Deebo Samuel talked so much smack after last season’s NFC championship game, the box score almost needed a doublecheck to confirm that — yes, the 49ers did indeed lose to the Eagles.
Samuel called one Eagles cornerback “trash” and blistered Philly as his “most-hated” team in the NFL. Just for good measure, Samuel and some teammates arrived Sunday dressed in black, perhaps a knowing nod to the bleak day ahead for the Eagles.
Samuel backed up his big mouth with a blockbuster performance that showed the 49ers have plenty of room left to chase the No. 1 seed in the NFC.
Brock Purdy threw for 314 yards and four touchdowns, Samuel scored three TDs and Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts was checked for a concussion in San Francisco’s 42-19 win over Philadelphia.
The fiery NFC championship game rematch also featured 49ers’ touchdowns on six straight possessions and a pair of ejections that showed this year’s title game might not run again through Philly, after all.
“There wasn’t much to last year with this,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said. “We were just excited to come out here and play a really good team and play well and get a win.”
The 49ers (9-3) left Philly 10 months ago battered in the NFC championship game behind injuries to Purdy and his backup, and they never stood a chance in a 31-7 loss. The 49ers spent an offseason chirping at the Birds — Samuel called James Bradberry “trash” — and then entered the Linc as a rare betting favorite against a 10-win team at home.
“Talking trash, it’s part of the game,” Samuel said. “Hopefully, no one took it to heart. It’s all fun and games at the end of the day.”
It wasn’t much fun for the Eagles.
The Eagles (10-2) suffered a scare when Hurts jogged off the field in the fourth and went straight to the locker room. He was cleared to play and returned to action.
It was not immediately clear when Hurts was injured. He declined to get into specifics of the injury.
By the time last season’s NFL MVP runner-up returned, the Eagles trailed 35-13 and were on their way toward their first home loss of the season. Hurts did hit DeVonta Smith for a 2-yard TD on his return drive. He finished 26-of-45 passing for 298 yards.
Purdy put the finishing touches on the win with a 46-yard TD to Samuel.
Perhaps all that braggadocio paid off for the 49ers. Hard feelings spilled into the game, highlighted by a scrap in the third quarter that got 49ers linebacker Dre Greenlaw and the the Eagles’ chief security officer tossed.
Dom DiSandro, a constant presence on the Eagles’ sideline, pulled Greenlaw off Smith after a reception. Greenlaw popped up and reached over two officials to touch DiSandro’s face with a closed fist.
Greenlaw was ejected. DiSandro, a cult hero in Philly for his ever-present backup when Eagles are out in public, also was told to leave and walked to the locker room to a roaring ovation.
“I love how we rallied after,” Shanahan said.
The Eagles offered few other reasons cheer.
Purdy picked apart a defense that left receivers open for big chunks of the game. Samuel also inflicted his damage in the third quarter on a 12-yard rushing TD and caught a 48-yard TD pass from Purdy that stretched a 14-6 halftime lead to 28-13.
Purdy got a kick out of Samuel adding some added spice to an already anticipated rematch.
“In the locker room, maybe he was saying stuff that was fun for us to hear,” Purdy said. “Was it anything out of the ordinary? Deebo’s Deebo. His play did the rest.”
It sure did. Samuel turned just four catches into 116 yards. The scores were clutch in any game, of course. But they kept an Eagles offense that made a habit of halftime rallies at bay and sucked the atmosphere out of the Linc.
The Eagles turned halftime deficits into wins in each of the last four games — including a Super Bowl rematch at Kansas City — and five times overall this season. The Eagles have been outscored 144-156 in the first half this season.
One pesky detail among all those comebacks — Philly never trailed against Shanahan. The 49ers are 33-1 (including playoffs) when leading by eight-plus points at the break under Shanahan.
Hurts did his part in the first half to drive the Eagles inside the 20, connecting with A.J. Brown for 38 yards on the opening drive and to Brown for 17 yards on the second drive. The Eagles instead had to settle for Jake Elliott field goals of 26 and 39 yards for the 6-0 lead.
“Typically, when you play to the standard, you win,” Hurts said. ”I don’t think we’ve played to the standard and won.”
The 49ers shook of a first-quarter funk that saw them finish with minus-6 total yards until Purdy got the offense rolling in the second. Much like in the NFC championship game, Purdy was pressured early. But he stayed strong, notably on a scramble where he was popped twice but stayed on his feet and still got a 6-yard gain. He capped that drive with a 2-yard TD pass to Brandon Aiyuk that cut it 7-6.
Christian McCaffrey, who finished with 93 yards rushing, added a 2-yard score with 38 seconds left for a 14-6 lead.
The 49ers never really looked back — and maybe the black attire was fitting for this rout, even as Samuel insisted otherwise.
“It’s just the outfit,” he said, laughing. “It all clicked. The fit came together well.”
So did the 49ers’ offense.
San Francisco hosts Seattle on Sunday.
The Eagles are off to Dallas for a Sunday night NFC East matchup.
AP NFL: https://apnews.com/hub/nfl
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