After 9 games of near perfect football, the Eagles winning streak has finally come to an end. From the beginning, the Eagles looked out of sync and never really got any momentum going. There were drive killing penalties and costly turnovers and nothing seemed to go right for the Eagles all night. Here are some things to think about after a day to reflect on the loss.
Russell Wilson made big play after big play and it was extremely frustrating to watch. Russell Wilson reminds me of playing the guy who always wins in Madden but doesn’t really know anything about football. The guy who always used to play with Michael Vick and run around the backfield aimlessly until they would either take off and run or someone would finally get open. Don’t you hate that guy!? Sunday was one of those nights. The Eagles had good pressure on him all night but he twisted and turned on almost every play just long enough to make something happen. You watch it, shaking your head, thinking, “this isn’t real football, this is nonsense”, but that “nonsense” worked for him Sunday and is what makes him so special (tips cap).
The Eagles were literally a couple plays away from extending their win streak to 10. Early penalties killed the first 2 or 3 drives of the game. Wentz missed a wide open Agholor early on that could have ended in a touchdown. He also overthrew Barner on a critical 4th down late in the game, although he was heavily pressured. The biggest of all is the Wentz fumble at the goal line. That one was a killer. You can’t win big games giving up sure points like that. Carson played pretty well but there are a couple plays he’d like to have back for sure. Take it as a learning experience. Oh, and not to mention…
Talk about a back breaker. t was pretty obvious after seeing 1 replay that it was a forward lateral so I don’t know what the guys in the Eagles booth were waiting for in signaling Pederson. Even without the advice from upstairs, Doug probably should have thrown the flag anyway. It was just such a huge play in the game that you kind of have to throw the flag there. Doug later said he didn’t want to throw the flag because it was a close play and he didn’t want to lose another timeout. The Eagles lost the first challenge even after it was clear that Torrey Smith was contacted past the first down marker. Referee Tony Corrente and his crew seemed to have their heads up where the sun doesn’t shine all night. Since 1999 the Eagles are 5-11-1 in games Corrente has reffed while the Seahawks are 19-5.
If the team is playing with that much confidence and swagger, then Doug should back them up and coach that way. He certainly didn’t inspire the troops by punting twice on 4th and short early in the game. Both instances were in Seattle territory. Seriously Doug, your team is rolling, why would you all of a sudden coach scared? Can’t get a tight sphincter just because it’s a big game.
Hopefully it’s not too serious. Fingers crossed he’s able to play as early as this week because he’s been such an important part of the offense. He is truly Carson’s security blanket. rey Burton looked good in his time but it’s not quite the same as Ertz.
First Signs of Vaitai’s Struggle:
Halapoulivaati Vaitai didn’t have a great game on Sunday. praised him here last week but Frank Clark had his way with him all game. It’s not panic time at all but it’s a situation that should be monitored. If he’s having a game where he’s struggling, they need to send more help his way. Frank Clark is a good, young, emerging pass rusher so we can just chalk this up as a bad game. Vaitai has been solid enough to trust him going forward.
Ajayi was in for 41% of the offensive snaps on Sunday and was also starting to get involved in the pass game. You wonder if that was just the gameplan or if he’s just picking up more of the offense to allow him to be on the field more. He didn’t break that big run on Sunday as he had in all of his previous games as an Eagle. He also missed a blitz pickup that allowed Wentz to get crushed by a cornerback. The more he’s picking up the better because he can be a huge weapon for this team down the stretch.
Customary Agholor Props:
It seems like weekly I have to mention how much Nelson Agholor has improved this year. Against the Seahawks he had the best game of his career. Agholor had 7 catches for 141 yards and a touchdown. He was confident catching the football and he was elusive after the catch. You have to feel good for the kid and I will continue to give him props for his effort and production. He is now up to 40 catches for 599 yards and 7 TD’s on the year as well as his recovered TD. Proud of you Nelson.
And Brandon Graham Props:
Another good week for Graham so he gets another mention. Graham was one of the only players that was able to corral Russell Wilson all night. Graham racked up 1.5 sacks which brings him to a career high 8.5 on the season. He’s looking to cash in on a big extension.
*TAKEAWAY OF THE GAME*
Just a loss. Not exposed:
The Eagles got beat on Sunday. They flat out lost but there’s no shame in that. The Eagles traveled to Seattle, which is notoriously one of the loudest environments in the league and were beaten by a very experienced Seattle team that plays well in December. They were not exposed however. There was nothing that Seattle put on film that would make other teams say “That’s the weakness. That’s how we attack the Eagles”. Seattle just had a couple calls and a couple bounces go their way and the Eagles missed some big plays of their own. There should be no concern that this will become a trend. It was a learning experience for sure and you better believe that a resilient competitor like Carson Wentz will learn from his poor performance and come out guns blazing against the Rams ready to right the ship.
The Eagles need to put this one in the rear-view because they have another big game against a very good Rams team this coming Sunday. It will be the first time the first 2 picks of the 2016 draft will play each other. Jared Goff was drafted ahead of Wentz that night and I have to believe Carson is going to want to show everyone what a stupid decision that was.
Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports