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January 21, 2018

How the NFC Champion Eagles (and their fans) celebrated the 38-7 beatdown of the Vikings

The party at Lincoln Financial Field began long before the final seconds ticked off the clock in Sunday night's NFC Championship Game. And, with the Eagles leading the Vikings by 31 points, that was just fine. 

The celebration actually started before that, and by the time the clock struck zero, officially sending the Eagles to Super Bowl LII for a date with the Patriots, it was bedlam in South Philly. 

And Northeast Philly.

And in Center City. 

And where ever this is...

Inside the stadium, it was quite the atmosphere as well, with players celebrating the team's first NFC title since the 2004 season under Andy Reid. Here's a look at some of their best celebrations, as well as their thoughts on advancing to the Super Bowl.

[Warning: Some of these videos contain NSFW language.]

Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie

"I’m so proud of this team; the players, the coaches. The adversity we’ve had to deal with is, to me, almost unprecedented with key players. Really important players that are just key to the way we operate, and yet we’ve been able to function at a very high level, focused. I mean it’s a credit to Doug [Pederson], the coaches, Howie [Roseman] and his staff in terms of the roster and people he brought in. It’s something very special. This is a special group of players and coaches. 
"However, all of our focus, as it’s been the whole year, is to win it all. It’s not to go to the Super Bowl. I think we’re on a special trip to Minneapolis, and there is only one goal in mind. That’s to win a World Championship. That’s what we’re all obsessed with. So other than that I’m happy to answer a few questions and we’ll go from there.”

Head coach Doug Pederson

"It's kind of surreal. I love coaching this football team. I love coaching those players in there. It's a tremendous feeling, quite honestly. It just hasn't sunk in. And the thing about this team is all the adversity and negativity and everything that surrounds the team, these guys don't listen to that. I don't listen to that. They come to work and practice hard every day, and they love being around each other. And that was part of two years ago when I came was having that type of culture in the building where people enjoyed coming to work, and our players and coaches really enjoy that. They love being around each other. 

"Now we've got two weeks to build again. Obviously, this is one of our goals to be the NFC champion and then represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. So we've got our work cut out for us. Just so excited for the guys."

Eagles quarterback Nick Foles

On his feelings after the victory: “Words can’t really describe what I feel right now. I said it out there that all glory belongs to God and I wouldn’t be here without any of that. I’m just grateful and humble to be a part of this team, to be in this moment, and to share it with our family, our fans, all of the people who love the Philadelphia Eagles, this franchise, and my teammates. It is honestly unbelievable and words just can’t describe it.”

On how it feels to be NFC Champions: “I haven’t even had time to comprehend what is going on, to be honest. I don’t know if I ever will. When I was up on that stage, that’s something that you dream about as a kid. With the magnitude of this game, for us to go out as a team and put together a great performance, that’s something that’s really special.”

On whether tonight was the loudest he has ever heard Lincoln Financial Field: “Absolutely. This place gets loud. I said it during the press conference this week that our fans are amazing. That is so hard when you’re the opposing offense and you’re trying to get your checks, you’re trying to communicate, you’re trying to say the play in the huddle, and you’re trying to do all of those things. That is a huge advantage and it’s shown throughout these last several years in Philadelphia in terms of the loudness and the passion of the fans. That’s why this thing is also so special because we got to celebrate this victory in [Lincoln Financial Field], in Philadelphia with everyone going crazy. I know everyone is going to enjoy themselves tonight.

Running back Jay Ajayi

On what it means to win the NFC Championship: “It’s just special for me, and [we’re] not done yet. We have one more left.” 

On the prospect of being the underdog in Super Bowl LII: “People can do whatever they want; count us out, count us in, we’re playing in the Super Bowl. They’re going to have to sit back and watch us do that.”

On the atmosphere of the NFC Championship Game: “Electric. Philly showed up tonight and we showed up tonight. It was amazing to go out there and complete a task that was in front of us. We have one left.”

Quarterback Carson Wentz

Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery

On going to the Super Bowl: "It feels great, but we are not done yet. We are not trying to go to the Super Bowl; we are trying to win it. All of our focus is on winning.”

On what makes the Eagles a special team: “It is the brotherhood with everyone together. We are a family. We all hang out and have fun.”

Wide receiver Nelson Agholor

Tight end Brent Celek

On his emotions following the win: “When this is all over, we’re going to get back to work because we have a lot of work to do. If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best. The Patriots are a great football team. I’m excited. We have a great team right here. I wouldn’t want to be on any other team right now.”

On wanting to be in this situation for a long time: “I mean, I always keep a positive mindset. It’s worked out. It was all worth it. I love this city. This city deserves it. We’re going to have so much fun. We just have to finish this thing. I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself. We have to finish this.”

“At this point, it’s for the city. It’s for Mr. Lurie. For the city. For everybody that put the hard work in this season. It doesn’t matter who we play. It’s not about them; it’s about us. 

"We’re not done yet."

Right tackle Lane Johnson

On his feelings at this moment: “It is euphoric. I am happy for everybody in this building and for this community. There have been a lot of ups and downs over the years. It feels good tonight to give people a smile on their face. I don’t know what is going on outside, but it is a riot. I am just happy.”

On hearing the doubters, but not believing it: “I think winning games starts inside your head first before you can go out and accomplish it. I know it sounds cliché, but for the mentality of successful athletes, that is where the battle is won first. You believe in yourself and your teammates.”

Safety Malcolm Jenkins

On how rewarding it is to win the NFC Championship: “Personally, this has been a roller coaster year for me. With all the stuff with the [National Football League] and the coalition and all that I work, and this season that we’ve had with the amount of adversities our team had to push through. Even as of late having my second daughter earlier this week, it’s been a grind and it’s so rewarding. I wouldn’t change anything or add anything. This team that I’ve been blessed to be a part of – and blessed to be called a leader of – has been a blessing to me and my family. I love every guy in this locker room and I’m so proud of what they’ve been able to accomplish.”

Tight end Zach Ertz

On how happy he is for Eagles TE Brent Celek: “It’s not lost on us that he went to the same game during his second year. The guy has been huge for my development as a tight end. You hear horror stories coming in as a rookie of veteran guys being mean to the high draft picks and never helping them, but Brent was the complete opposite. He helped me from the get-go, especially in the run game. I like to think that I helped him a little bit, but I owe a lot of my success to him. I’m very grateful that we’ll both be out there. He brings a different kind of energy to our tight ends room, and we wouldn’t be the same without him. We love playing with him and I hope he never retires. I think he’s got a few more good years left in him, but that’s his decision.”

Defensive end Chris Long

On showing veteran leadership this season along with Eagles S Malcolm Jenkins: “I think that’s our responsibility. Malcolm is an awesome humanitarian and a leader of men. I hope that I am, too. We are given so much, so it’s the least we can do. This city has been awesome, especially since I was a new guy. They have kind of adopted me. Everything I’ve done off the field they were a part of and really stepped up. You feel that real bond with the city, and at the end of the day this is the least we can do. Everyone always says to focus on football and be in your playbook, but I think Malcolm and others have proved that you can do positive things in the community and still be successful. The way Malcolm attacks things off the field is the same as how he plays. We’re just really lucky to be in this platform.”

Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox

On the team’s underdog mentality: “That’s good. We haven’t been talked about all year. That’s our story; no one has been talking about Philly, the Eagles defense, or the Eagles offense. If you go back and look, we finished in the top five of a bunch of different categories. This team just keeps finding ways to win, and that’s our motto.”

Defensive end Vinny Curry

On if he’s excited to get a chance to sack Patriots QB Tom Brady in the Super Bowl: “At this point, it’s for the city. It’s for Mr. Lurie. For the city. For everybody that put the hard work in this season. It doesn’t matter who we play. It’s not about them, it’s about us. We’re not done yet. We just have to stay the course. Like I said, we’re going to embrace this moment. It’s a wonderful feeling.  This is the thing guys talked about at OTA’s and here we go, you know what I mean? I’m pretty sure you’re happy.” 

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