During the NFC divisional round playoff game Sunday between the Philadelphia Eagles and New Orleans Saints, Alshon Jeffery had an opportunity to help his team advance to the conference championship game.
But as it’s been replayed countless number of times, the Eagles receiver figuratively and literally let that opportunity slip through his hands by allowing a potential reception turn into an interception.
No one took the play and the defeat worse than Jeffery, who faced the hoard of reporters after the game and said the loss was on him.
“I gotta catch that ball,” he said, point-blank. “That’s on me. I’ll take that loss. I let all my teammates down. To the city of Philadelphia, that’s on me. I’ll take that.”
Jeffery may have been down, but he received some support from an unlikely source. A second-grader in the West Chester Area School District, west of Philadelphia, wrote a heartwarming letter offering her support to the receiver.
— Raymond Johnson (@RaymondJ17) January 15′, 2019
“I am a huge Eagles fan,” wrote 7-year-old Abigail. “When I watched the play last night I was crying. It’s okay to loose a game you don’t always have to win a game. We couldn’t have won the Superbowl without you last year. I think you are a awesome player no matter what. It takes lots of practice and courage to catch a ball. I think you are a good athlete. It takes a lot of practice to become a good athlete.
“I love you! My whole family was rooting for you! Don’t give up on playing football. Keep practiceing. Don’t get mad esally. I know you can do it. We all know you are a good player.
The note went viral, and Jeffery wanted to show his thanks by surprising the second-grade class.
The school had set it up so that Jeffery would FaceTime with the kids, but the teacher told them FaceTime wasn’t working. That’s when Jeffery popped into the classroom to surprise the children.
MUST WATCH: Alshon Jeffery @TheWorldof_AJ surprises the 2nd graders from West Chester who wrote him letters of encouragement after the @Eagles loss to the Saints. Such a special moment – we told them we were trying to FaceTime him ?#FlyEaglesFly#Eagles@6abc pic.twitter.com/WYgpPKb6VZ
— Jamie Apody (@JamieApody) January 17, 2019
“Can you sign my sweatshirt,” one student yelled out as soon as Jeffery entered the room. He gave high-fives to all of the kids and posed for pictures with Abigail and her family.
— Raymond Johnson (@RaymondJ17) January 17, 2019
A Philadelphia Eagles celebration, even after a heartbreaking loss, wouldn’t be complete without a singing of the fight song, and that’s just what the second-grade class did.
— TLFlorio (@TammiL38) January 17, 2019
The Eagles wouldn’t have been in the position they were in without Jeffery, who played while still recovering from offseason shoulder surgery.
He will now have a full offseason to get healthy again and is signed with the Eagles through the 2021 season.
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