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Eagles Players Challenge Soldiers In Afghanistan To A Game Of Madden

By David Spunt and Justin Udo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Not even 24 hours after the Eagles' big win in Dallas, three players spent time playing a little football with American soldiers overseas. It all happened thanks to an internet connection, the Eagles, and a group called Pro vs. GI Joe.

Quarterback Mark Sanchez, Connor Barwin and Riley Cooper took turns playing the game they know well, as they developed new friendships.

"To be able to play video games and talk with those soldiers and stuff, it really gives us a good feel for what we're really doing on the field," Sanchez told Eyewitness News.

Eagles players challenge soldiers to a game of Madden. (credit: Justin Udo/KYW)

The game took place with soldiers from Afghanistan. Army Sergeant Joseph Oneto jumped at the chance to play the real life football stars and he isn't shy. He had some fun freestyle rapping, before talking to Eyewitness News about virtually hanging out with three Eagles on the other side of the globe.

"Anytime somebody takes the time out of their day to come up and say something, it doesn't matter if they have celebrity status or are really good at what they do," Oneto said.

Oneto said talking to the players gave him a new outlook on life.

"It's rare that you get to meet people that are just nice anymore," he said.

Eagles outside linebacker Connor Barwin said the game was the first time he played Madden in five years.

"Impressed with Madden and how real the game is now, but obviously there's a little bit of pressure playing against those guys," Barwin told Eyewitness News.

"It was cool. It was great to see how happy he was and to just talk to him about the game yesterday, talk to him about what his day was today and what he did and then him asking some football questions it was pretty cool," Barwin told KYW Newsradio.

Before heading their separate ways the players promised to keep in touch with Sgt. Oneto. Riley Cooper even invited him on a hunting trip.

"Philadelphia is the foundation of this country. It's the City of Brotherly Love and there's a reason for that," Oneto said.

Oneto hopes to catch a game at Lincoln Financial Field when he's stateside.

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