Winding road for Nick Foles, Case Keenum to NFC Championship Game

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Two backup quarterbacks are now one step away from leading their respective teams into the Super Bowl and completing one very peculiar path.

The roads for Philadelphia Eagles' Nick Foles and Minnesota Vikings' Case Keenum, two Texas-natives, intertwined at times throughout their careers, with Sam Bradford, the St. Louis/Los Angeles Rams, and NFL Drafts playing key roles.

The Eagles selected Foles in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Keenum went undrafted and was picked up by the Houston Texans.

Foles helped the Eagles win the 2013 NFC East title. The team, however, lost in the playoffs to the New Orleans Saints.

In 2014, Keenum signed with the St. Louis Rams while quarterback Sam Bradford was recovering from a torn ACL. He was then signed to the Houston Texans, where he had started his NFL career.

In March 2015, the Philadelphia Eagles traded Foles to the Rams for Bradford.

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Eagles trade Nick Foles to St. Louis Rams.

At the time, Foles took to Twitter to thank the Eagles players and the team's fans, "Thankful for the opportunity to start my career in Philly. Going to miss my teammates & Eagles fans who supported me."

Meantime, the Rams reacquired Keenum from the Texans for a draft pick.

"Considering the Rams traded a pick for Keenum and he has a full offseason to get acclimated in St. Louis, perhaps this time he'll get a legitimate shot to stick around," ESPN's Nick Wagoner wrote.

Nine games into the season, the Rams benched Foles. Rams coach Jeff Fisher named Keenum the new starting quarterback.

"I don't expect Nick to like it," Fisher said. "He's competitive, but he understands, and we're gonna move forward here. I'm not saying this is week-to-week, but this is what's best right now for our team as we move forward, from a production standpoint offensively."

In 2016, the Rams selected quarterback Jared Goff as the No. 1 overall pick. The Eagles received the No.2 pick in a trade with the Cleveland Browns and selected quarterback Carson Wentz.

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The Philadelphia Eagles have selected quarterback Carson Wentz as the second-overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.

Foles requested his release from the Rams and became an unrestricted free agent. He signed with the Kansas City Chiefs in August 2016.

The next month, the Eagles sent Sam Bradford to the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for draft picks.

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"My initial reaction was surprise," Bradford said. "It's something I really didn't think was a possibility. It kind of caught me off guard, but I think after the surprise, I was quickly filled with excitement for a new chapter and the opportunity ahead of me."

In spring 2017, Keenum joined the Vikings as the backup for Bradford and an injured Teddy Bridgewater.

Around the same time, Foles returned to Philadelphia.

"This was a great opportunity to come back here and be a part of this organization with a quarterback like Carson [Wentz.] I was once a young quarterback here. It's funny seeing a young quarterback. The opportunity to help him grow and excel. He's such a talented quarterback and individual," Foles said.

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Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles speaks about working with Carson Wentz.

In October, Bradford injured his knee in a game against the Bears. Keenum led the Vikings to victory in that game and then to a 13-3 season.

The Eagles were on a roll with an 11-2 record with Wentz in the QB position. But then during a December game against the Rams, Wentz tore his ACL.

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Wentz injured as Eagles clinch NFC East: Jeff Skversky reports on Action News at 11 p.m., December 10, 2017

Foles replaced Wentz on the next drive and for the rest of the season. In that same game, the Eagles clinched the NFC East title.

On Saturday, Foles helped the Eagles get past the Atlanta Falcons in the playoffs.

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On Sunday, Keenum helped the Vikings get past the New Orleans Saints in the playoffs.

This upcoming Sunday, the two will cross paths at the NFC Championship Game at Lincoln Financial Field. The road to the Super Bowl will end for one.

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