On the Tuesday before the game against Dallas, the phone call finally came that the baby was on its way. The next day Cunningham flew to Vegas, and last Thursday son Randall was born. On Friday, Cunningham rejoined the Eagles, arriving after practice. He hadn't taken his game plan with him to Vegas. Cunningham took part in the Saturday walk-through, and that was the extent of his preparation. Forget it.
"All the guys are furious," says former Eagle guard Brian Baldinger, who now does radio and TV work in Philadelphia. "A couple of guys on the team had babies this year and none of them pulled anything like that. You saw what he looked like—everything thrown off the back foot, no rhythm, no nothing. He didn't give his team a chance."
Cunningham underthrew and overthrew his receivers. With 5:43 to go and the score 30-3, he finally dressed up his stats with a long scoring drive, but until then he had been 7 for 21 for 98 yards. "Randall was definitely swimming upstream," said Aikman.
The Eagles, with blanket coverage, sometimes three defenders, on wideout Michael Irvin, held the five-time Pro Bowl receiver to one catch, a fourth-quarter nine-yard touchdown. "What that did was set up everyone else," said Aikman afterward. "I told Michael, 'The reason you got only one catch is that you're one of the best receivers in the league,' if you can follow that."
Irvin was in good spirits about all the attention he had received. "You realize what it's all about and what goes into winning a game," he said. "But drawing that crowd did get a little frustrating at times. Once I yelled over to Ray Rhodes and said, 'Hey, Ray, a little man-to-man, just one time, what do you say?' Rhodes shook his head and yelled, 'No! No!'
"I know Green Bay will have something cooked up special for me. It doesn't matter as long as we spread it around."
On Sunday there was more than enough for everybody.