‘Coming to America’ football scene: Why Eddie Murphy’s quote from 1988 movie is going viral after Packers vs. Giants

The Giants pulled off a surprising upset in Week 14 of the 2023 NFL season with their 24-22 win over the Packers on “Monday Night Football” thanks to some late-game heroics from Tommy DeVito and kicker Randy Bullock.

DeVito led the Giants on a game-winning drive during which the Giants marched 55 yards to set up a 37-yard kick from Bullock.

While Bullock, a streaky veteran, had missed from 48 yards earlier in the game, the Giants still trusted him to hit the relative chip shot and guarantee a Giants victory.

He did not disappoint.

The victory was an exciting one for the Giants. They have now won three consecutive games with undrafted rookie Tommy DeVito serving as the team’s starting quarterback. He has catalyzed the team and galvanized the fans during what had previously been a rocky season.

As exciting as the game was, it also had a bit of a familiar feel to it. That wasn’t just because it was a tightly contested matchup decided by a field goal, as those happen all the time.

MORE: DeVito leads Giants on comeback win over Packers on “MNF”

No, this time, the coincidence within the game is that it directly matches the plot of one described by Eddie Murphy in the 1988 movie “Coming to America.”

‘Coming to America’ football scene

The “Coming to America” football scene occurs when Murphy’s character Akeem Joffer, the crown prince of the fictional African nation of Zamunda, is working at a knock-off version of McDonald’s known as “McDowell’s.”

Joffer is trying to win over the restaurant’s owner, Cleo McDowell, in the hopes of getting closer to his daughter, Lisa McDowell. As such, Joffer attempts to create small talk with his boss, bringing up a football game he had watched the previous evening.

“Did you happen to catch the professional football contest on television last night?” Joffer says. “The Giants of New York took on the Packers of Green Bay, and in the end, the Giants triumphed by kicking an oblong ball made of pigskin through a big H. It was a most ripping victory.”

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McDowell looks at Joffer annoyed and confused before telling him, “You wanna keep working here, stay off the drugs.”

That scene will certainly elicit some chuckles, but it also captured the attention of NFL fans because it effectively described how the Giants beat the Packers in Week 14 of the 2023 NFL season. That prompted many, from Robert Griffin III to the actual New York Giants, to post about it on social media.

Surprisingly, there weren’t many jokes about the NFL being scripted despite this major coincidence. Surely, those cries will pop up in the coming days.

So too will the voices of those pointing out that the outcome described in the movie wasn’t overly prophetic. After all, it effectively just described the Giants beating the Packers with a last-second field goal. That was bound to happen at some point, right?

Perhaps that’s true. Still, it was fun to see a rather innocuous scene from a comedy classic suddenly take on new meaning because of a New Jersey-born quarterback and an 11th-year kicker.

MORE: Can the Giants make the playoffs amid their surprise winning streak?

‘Coming to America’ movie cast

Murphy starred in “Coming to America” along with Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, John Amos, Madge Sinclair and Shari Headley. Here’s a full look at the film’s notable cast:

Actor Role(s)
Eddie Murphy Prince Akeem Joffer, Randy Watson, Saul,
Arsenio Hall Reverend Brown, Morris, Extremely Ugly Girl
James Earl Jones King Jaffe Joffer
John Amos Cleo McDowell
Madge Sinclair Queen Aoleon Joffer
Shari Headley Lisa McDowell
Clint Smith Sweets
Paul Bates Oha
Eriq La Salle Darryl Jenks
Frankie Faison Landlord
Vanessa Bel Imani Izzi
Louie Anderson Maurice
Allison Dean Patrice McDowell
Sheila Johnson Lady-in-waiting
Jake Steinfeld Cab driver
Calvin Lockhart Colonel Izzi,
Samuel L. Jackson Hold-Up Man


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