Yes, the Eagles have given up 90 points in two games. Yes, the Secondary has been appalling as of late. Yes, there has been a complete lack of pass rush and yes, the run Defense has more holes than Augusta National Golf Course.
But firing Bill Davis, a coach who built a secondary that until recently has kept this team alive is the wrong move…firing a head coach and leaving a system driven team without their innovator for the last five games is a bad move…but firing an Offensive Coordinator who shies away from the media so much we forget his name? Eh, could work.
Fans are quick to jump to the conclusion that because the Defense allowed 90 points in two games that it should be Davis getting the axe. I may be a lone wolf on this one but honestly, if an axe were to swing..it should be in Shurmur’s direction.
If you take away player effort levels and all other contributing factors to concentrate on nothing but play-calling..Offensively, it’s been atrocious.
The first play against the Bucs sums it up. If you can’t remember what it was, have a guess..go on, just a stab in the dark….did you say swing pass?
Look at how close this was to being intercepted. The Tampa SAFETY stormed down prior to the snap and leapt in the way..ON THE FIRST PLAY OF THE GAME. It’s that same predictability that the team later admitted led to an interception.
The Eagles reportedly simplified the playbook for Sam Bradford. But it’s gotten to the point where we only ever see a handful of plays and the result of that is basically what we saw in week 2 where the Cowboys were able to read and shut down DeMarco Murray..only across the entire Offense.
Receiver’s are unable to get open because the opposing Defense will be familiar with the routes and how much attention to pay certain guys in certain formations. If the Defense sees a certain lineup, they’ll know where the ball is going. But where’s the proof you ask? Just look at how many times Josh Huff was targeted after his touchdown on Sunday. Spoiler alert: 0. Why was this? Because he wasn’t “the intended receiver” on the route which this Offense seems to be built around.
What did Mr Shurmur have to say in response to why the wideouts were getting minimal targets?
“Well, there’s this team in New England that throws the ball a lot inside and I don’t think you’ll hear anybody complain about that,”
– according to this article on Phillymag
The problem runs even deeper than that. One of the most important plays in this Offense is the read-option..only now it appears Sanchez doesn’t read it…and there isn’t an option..he just kind of..hands the ball off and does a little run thinking he’s somehow fooled the Defense.
Sanchez is yet to actually take a read-option this season but the problem is every single time the play occurs, the running back is wrapped up. If he READ the play, there’s acres of space after the linebacker charges after Murray/Sproles..so why not take it and run? It could be down to the playbook, it could be down to Sanchez but the same happened with Bradford until about two weeks before his injury.
Then there’s the running game that by now needs no introduction. It’s been 11 weeks of the same problems, it’s just that some Defenses highlight them more than others. We have posted so many articles on why the running game has struggled, at this stage we don’t need another. But running the same 5/6 plays doesn’t exactly help.
There’s a lot of criticism about the Defense not adjusting but the Offense is hardly shapeshifting..it’s the same swingplays every single drive followed by a Murray run that goes nowhere due to predictability and then an attempted deep pass that often ends up incomplete due to predictable routes.
But the Eagles don’t change things up…in fact the Eagles had SEVEN drives under 2 minutes 30 seconds today and four of those were under a minute…now Chip says time of possession doesn’t matter, it does if you can’t score.
The Offense and Defense are supposed to help eachother out. It’s almost as if they’ve switched roles and it’s the Offense trying and failing miserably to bail out the Defense..only instead of not being able to stop drives defensively, they can’t start them Offensively.
If the Eagles don’t adjust and throw in some different plays (like they did that one time Ryan Mathews scored on a wheel route) then this will be the same story for the rest of the season.
It’s almost as if a conversation after the game goes like this:
Chip: Okay Pat, it’s obvious that we were out-coached this week, like every week..do you think we should change things up?
Pat: Absolutely…what if…..we throw more swing passes?
Chip: Pat, you’re a genius..I knew you were the right man for this job.
Yes the Defense has been bad…but at one point it had two of the top safeties in the NFL and two corners who went on fantastic streaks of not allowing a touchdown. The Offense has been plagued by the same issues since week one.
Now admittedly it is Chip that runs the show Offensively but he can’t fire himself. The team needs a fresh perspective from someone who doesn’t possess a God complex. Pat is basically Chip’s ultimate “yes” man.
If there is any change to come in the coaching staff to assert a point, the finger is being pointed at the wrong man…
Liam is a 24-year old sports journalist from the UK and founder of the Philly Sports Network. In just five years he turned a hobby into one of the fastest-growing Philadelphia sports sites in the world, amassing 7,000,000 views and writing over 3,000 articles. Drawing attention from the likes of CSN, NJ.Com and Bleacher Report in the process, Liam is set on changing the way Philadelphia sports teams are reported on forever.
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