What a way to end a Monday. We got to see it all last night at Lincoln Financial Field as the Eagles were able to DOMINATE the time of possession to move to 6-6 on the year. Fans were finally able to see Darren Sproles find the promise land for the first time this season, the offensive line not give up a sack, and see Mark Sanchez throw the ball around! Winning this rivalry game was able to set up the biggest game of the year on Sunday in Dallas. I cannot stand that stadium. Obnoxiously big scoreboard, showing Jerry Jones 100 times a game, and the occasional highlight of a random high school football team playing in the stadium that 99.6% of America doesn’t care about. Now let’s dive into last nights win!
Anyway, the birds were able to beat the ‘Skins in all areas of the game. Getting 30 first downs, going 7-13 on 3rd down, and the time of possession were the 3 major factors to winning this game. Carson Wentz was able to control the game by having the ball for 39:19 minuets and carving up the secondary with extended plays, RPO’s, and a balanced dosage of running. Wentz was right around his average on the year with 69.2% completions and passed the 300 yard mark again. I thought his best throws came from his ability to by time in the pocket and find Golden Tate up the sideline and for the touchdown in the first half. The way the Eagles extended drives and converted on 3rd down was the way they dominated games last year and it was great to see them find that same formula last night.
When it came to the rest of the offense, it was a true team effort. Seeing the older guys in Matthews and Sproles score was awesome,and even the Golden boy getting a touchdown and the 2 point conversion. Zach Ertz continues his record setting season by hauling in another 9 catches to give him the franchise record for catches in a season, passing the great BWestbrook. Ertz and Wentz are the Bonnie and Clyde of this team and its pretty neat. Agholor was spectacular on 3rd down as well as the big dog Alshon Jeffery (who combined for 6 catches and 78 yards). Additionally, we need to show some love to the men up front. 71, 73, 62, 79, and 65 played outstanding by not giving up a sack, tremendous down field blocking on numerous screen passes to Clement, and getting key 3rd and short conversions early in the game. This was hands down the best the offense has looked with everyone contribution to the offensive productions.
With the all the good, there is obviously some bad. The 4th and goal stop early could have been the nail in the coffin besides having Sanchez come in for self destruction. (shout out to the almost butt-fumble part 2). Not blockign the defensive end was a head scratchier. Im sure Jaws will catch that in the 80 hours of film he’ll watch. Carson throwing the pick in the red zone was a back breaker. I thought he starred down Jeffery on that and Norman being a high risk corner under cut the route big time. Elliot kicked well which is very promising come down the home stretch where field position and long kicks are extremely important.
As we transition to the defensive side of the ball Rasul Douglas played phenomenal in the open field. 32 had some key tackles and was only lost once on a great route. Brandon Graham was consistently in the backfield as well as Fletcher Cox. I would have liked to see more pressure down the stretch with Sanchez under center and Washington’s depleted offensive line could have been a feast for the front four. 9 QB hits and 3 sacks could always improve, especially with Jared Goff and Deshaun Watson coming up. The most impressive stat was holding Adrian Peterson to 98 yards after he had a 90 yard TD run…let that sink in. The man ran once for 90 yards, and 8 other time he had 1 yard per carry. That’s Eagles football!
This game not only kept the season alive, but it also gave this team confidence. An inexperienced secondary needed a game under their belt like this and the offense needed a tune up game. Next Sunday with the season on the line I expect the Birds to be ready to go. If Dallas can steal one from the Eagles at home, there is no reason why they can’t go take one there.
Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports