PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 11 -- Defensive end Fletcher Cox had two sacks resulting in two fumbles that led to scores as the Philadelphia Eagles beat the New Orleans Saints 39-17 on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.
Cox's first sack and forced fumble on Saints quarterback Drew Brees, in the second quarter, gave the Eagles (2-3) possession on the Saints' 46 and led to a field goal and a 10-7 Eagles lead at halftime.
Then Cox did it again in the third quarter after the Eagles took a 17-10 lead. This time he knocked the ball out of Brees' hands and recovered it himself. That set up a 13-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Sam Bradford to tight end Brent Celek to give the Eagles a 23-10 lead with 6:31 left in the third quarter.
Bradford completed 32 of 45 passes for 33 yards and two touchdowns, while running back DeMarco Murray has his best game as an Eagle. The former Dallas Cowboy rushed for 83 yards on 20 carries after rushing for just 47 yards in his previous three games.
For New Orleans (1-4), Brees completed 26 of 43 passes for 336 yard and two touchdowns, but he was also sacked five times.
The Saints' first interception of the year led to their first touchdown of the game. Midway through the first quarter, the Eagles drove to the Saints' 12-yard line, but cornerback Brandon Browner picked off an underthrown pass from Bradford in the end zone and New Orleans took over on its 20.
That's when Brees and the offense got on track, driving 80 yards in eight plays, with Brees connecting on a 6-yard touchdown pass to tight end Benjamin Watson, which gave the Saints a 7-0 lead with 3:35 left in the opening period.
The Eagles tied the game early in the second quarter, but not before another Bradford pass was intercepted in the end zone, this time by cornerback Delvin Breaux. The Eagles finally cashed in after Murray ripped off a 24-yard run to the Saints 34. On the next play, wide receiver Josh Huff crossed the middle of the field and caught a pass from Bradford, and when two Saints defenders collided, Huff had clear sailing to the end zone.
The Eagles took the lead late in the second quarter, after Cox sacked Brees and forced a fumble that teammate Jordan Hicks recovered. That led to a 39-yard field goal by Caleb Sturgis with 10 seconds left in the quarter, giving the Eagles a 10-7 lead at halftime.
The Saints got those three points back on their first possession of the second half, after Brees hit wide receiver Brandin Cooks with a 46-yard pass on third-and-8. That led to Zach Hocker's 21-yard fied goal with11:12 left in the third quarter.
But the Eagles answered with possibly their best drive of the year as they moved 80 yards on nine efficient plays, with running back Ryan Mathews scoring from the 2 to make it 17-10 with 6:44 left in the period.
NOTES: The Saints played without two starting offensive linemen -- LT Terron Armstead (knee) and RG Jahri Evans (knee), who has now missed three straight games. Rookie Andrus Peat, a first-round pick from Stanford, made his first NFL start in Armstead's place. ... Also inactive for the Saints was starting DE Bobby Richardson (hip), who was replaced by Kaleb Eulls. ... Eagles LB Marcus Smith, last year's first-round draft pick, was activated for just the second time this season because of injuries to starters Mychal Kendricks (hamstring) and Kiko Alonso. ... Rookie Jordan Hicks started in Kendricks' place.