It took a while, but when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. A second half explosion saw the Eagles bury the Cowboys hopes of a playoff push and all but lift the crown for the NFC East division. Here’s a closer look at the top performers and slightly quieter outings from the stunning win.
The Eagles first-round pick now has 4.5 sacks in his last 5 games after a monstrous 3-tackle, 2-sack outing against Dallas. Barnett was an absolute monster in the backfield, adding some huge TFL’s to his tally including a huge 12-yard loss burning down Dak Prescott. The Tennessee product ran riot on Sunday night and saw a huge increase in snap count. It’s deserved and may only be a positive sign of things to come.
It would be easy to focus on Ronald Darby’s leap back into the deep end with an interception to his name along with some strong coverage on Dez Bryant, but that would be doing Patrick Robinson and Jalen Mills an injustice. Robinson has 0.5 sacks last night along with a crucial pass breakup and some outstanding coverage, while Mills racked up 7 tackles and did all he could to keep plays ahead of him. The trio were secure in their tackles, impressive with their ability to jump routes, and confident in their man-coverage skillset against a set of reasonably dangerous Cowboys wideout. It all started up front for the Eagles, but it ended in the secondary.
What more can be said about “KGH”? other than he was a stud. Leading the team in special teams tackles this season, Grugier-Hill added one more to his tally before stepping in as the Eagles emergency kicker, penning Dallas inside their own territory throughout the night. A touchback is a run-of-the-mill stat for a kicker, but for a linebacker, that’s a huge achievement.
The Brit’s 71-yard run will be sitting pretty in the memory of Eagles fans this morning and with good reason. Ajayi finally broke off for another explosive rush and led the team in rushing for the second consecutive week.
Barner may have only been active due to his return duties, but a stunning 22-yard reception pushed the Eagles up to the goal-line early on before he punched it in for six just one play later. If Wendell Smallwood is sidelined due to a surplus of talent at the position, Barner’s big first quarter doesn’t bode well for his future. For Barner however, it does the complete inverse.
A number one wide receiver? That debate has long been over. Jeffery led the Eagles in receiving once again with 4 receptions for 64 yards and a touchdown. Jeffery did a phenomenal job of clinging on to an absolute dart from Carson Wentz and forcing it into the end zone to assert his authority all over Jerry world.
There weren’t many ‘fallers’ in this scintillating win, but Nelson Agholor was one of them. His touchdown reception of incredible effort was called back due to the knee being down, leaving the USC product with 1 reception for -2 yards on 5 targets. It wasn’t the performance we are used to seeing From Agholor…but it shouldn’t hinder his back-end of the season.
Another quiet player was the Eagles leading receiver, Zach Ertz. Catching two of five passes thrown his way for a total of 8 yards, Ertz was held to single-digit receiving yardage since the 2015 win over New England…and his lowest since the loss to Seattle in 2014. It was a disappointing night for Ertz, but like Agholor, knowing the duo have amassed 12 touchdowns between them alone, the impact of this night shouldn’t linger with the team soaring at 9-1.
Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports