TUCSON, Ariz. - After he was released by the Los Angeles Rams, he thought about walking away from the NFL. And less than two months ago, he was the backup quarterback in Philadelphia behind rising star Carson Wentz.
Fast-forward to Sunday night. Former Arizona Wildcats star Nick Foles didn't just become the first UA QB to start a Super Bowl; he's a Super Bowl champion and MVP.
Thrust into the Eagles' starting job following Wentz's season-ending injury Dec. 11, Foles completed 28 of 43 passes for 373 yards and three touchdown passes -- and he became the first QB in Super Bowl history to catch a TD -- as the Eagles defeated Tom Brady and the Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl LII on Sunday. The game featured the most total yards in any NFL game ever.
Foles' improbable TD reception just before halftime gave the Eagles a 22-12 edge. And trailing 33-32 in the fourth quarter, Foles' touchdown pass to Zach Ertz -- whose wife Julie is a Mesa Dobson High School alum and a star with the US women's soccer team -- gave the Eagles the victory.
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Foles wasn't the only former Wildcat to shine Sunday. Tight end Rob Gronkowski caught nine passes for 116 yards and two touchdowns, and linebacker Marquis Flowers made a big third-down stop that allowed the Patriots to eventually take the lead in the fourth quarter. All three men played together under then-UA head coach Mike Stoops. Also, Eagles special-teams coach David Fipp played for UA from 1994-97.
Stoops and Arizona convinced Foles to transfer from Michigan State after Kirk Cousins won the starting job with the Spartans. Foles won the starting job at UA early in the 2009 season, and he played at UA through 2011. He was drafted by the Eagles in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft and had one outstanding season in Philly, but he was traded to the Rams after the 2014 season.
The Rams released Foles before the 2016 season, and he was reacquired by the Eagles in March.
Foles is married to former UA volleyball player Tori Moore. The couple had their first child, a daughter, last year.