ATLANTA (AP) – The Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles couldn’t wait to get started on their rematch of the NFC championship game – two players got kicked out before the game kicked off.

Then, it was the Falcons who got a bit of payback.

Michael Vick ran for one touchdown and set up another with a long pass, enough to give Atlanta a 14-10 victory over the Eagles on Monday night.

Clearly, emotions were running high. Jeremiah Trotter of the Eagles and Kevin Mathis of the Falcons were ejected after a scuffle broke out in pregame warmups, setting an intense tone for the rest of the night.

The Eagles, after falling behind 14-0 in the first quarter, shut down Vick the rest of the way. But they couldn’t come all the way back, their final bid falling short when Donovan McNabb took a vicious hit from Rod Coleman, a fourth-down pass falling far short of Terrell Owens streaking down the sideline with 1:33 left.

Vick kneeled a couple of times to run out the clock, giving the Falcons a victory over the team that knocked them out of the playoffs two of the last three years.

Less than eight months ago, the Eagles beat Atlanta 27-10 for the NFC title in frigid Philadelphia.

AP-ES-09-13-05 0036EDT


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