Eagles – Falcons: 7 Tragedies

That was a gut kick of a game, wasn’t it? Falcons coach Dan Quinn brought his defensive coaching skills more effectively than anyone could have imagined, and moved Julio Jones everywhere imaginable around the field. Worse yet, the Eagles showed enough power in the second half to get your hopes up, just to kick you in the afeormentioned gut again for a tough loss. Here are seven tragedies from tonight’s game. (I’m sure I forgot some other ones.)

 

1. Cody Parkey
It’s been there right in front of us all off-season. Parkey missing kicks, sitting out with a groin injury. The same groin injury that hobbled him last December, when he missed two field goals to cost the Eagles their second game against Washington, knocking them out of the playoffs.

Most people didn’t want to hear it about Parkey’s struggles. But even before he muffed an unremarkable 44-yard kick to blow the game, he was only able to get two touchbacks on five kickoffs. Atlanta’s Matt Bryant Bosher had a touchback on all seven of his.

And then disaster struck. Yes, Atlanta had good pressure on that final field goal attempt. But dealing with pressure is Parkey’s job, injured or not. Chip said after the game that he had a lot of confidence in Cody Parkey. That makes one of us.

 

2. The Offensive Line

Everyone knew it was a risk when the Eagles cut both starting guards and promoted their backups, Allen Barbre and Andrew Gardner. The surprise was that the three returning offensive linemen didn’t look much better (and Barbre had an assist on the Eagles last TD, pushing Mathews over the goal). Actually, Lane Johnson was solid, and the fact that Chip kept calling sweeps to the right indicates that he was relying on him.

But Jason Peters was cleanly beat by rookie Vic Beasly. Later he moved early with the Eagles pinned down at their own five, sending the team back to the two-and-a-half yard line. And Jason Kelce was called for a couple of big holding penalties, including a costly one on the fourth quarter drive to win that fell short.

 

3. Chip Kelly played small ball(s)

You know Chip Kelly wanted to go for it on fourth and one with just under three minutes left and the game on the line. That’s why he ended up rushing the kick team onto the field at the end of the play clock, which didn’t help the situation. Even if they had made it, the scene was set for a replay of the 2013 playoff loss to the Saints, with a stud veteran QB ready to march up the field with plenty of time to get into range for the winning FG. Especially with Matt Bryant, an excellent long kicker, warming up for the Falcons.

The defense played its part, too, which makes the choice even more tragic. Even if the Eagles had failed to get the first, they would have gotten it back. At Oregon, Kelly explained that he often went for it on fourth because he was confident that his defense could stop the other team if it failed. The defense did its part. Chip didn’t do his.

 

4. Maxwell didn’t earn his money

The Eagles paid $63 million to sign Byron Maxwell as a free agent, specifically to plug the holes in pass coverage, and he didn’t show many signs of being worth it today. Matt Ryan showed no fear of Maxwell at all, and was rewarded with pass after pass to Julio Jones (nine receptions for 141 yards and two touchdowns). Roddy White added four for 84 yards.

On the other hand, Oregon bias paid off as ex-Ducks Kiko Alonso and Walter Thurmond had great interceptions that did a lot to keep the Eagles in the game. (Check out Kiko’s Odell Beckham, Junior-ish one-handed catch. I know you’ve seen it, but you want to see it again.) They did a lot more to improve the pass coverage than Maxwell did. DE Taylor Hart also had a couple of solo tackles in his first NFL action after a redshirt year.

 

5. Penalties

The Eagles did their best to throw the game away with penalties, somehow managing to overcome five of them on one late 95-yard drive that required them to gain 130 yards to reach the end zone. But they didn’t need to increase their burden on this night.

 

6. Malcolm Jenkins just can’t catch a ball

Twice, he had easy interceptions in his arm. One bounced off his chest. The other off his arms. Last year, the same thing happened. Why is he not at the Jugs machine before and after practice every day? If he caught all those balls, he’d be a Pro Bowl safety easily.

 

7. The pieces were all there

The final tragedy is that you could see all of the elements that Chip Kelly has assembled– the scheme, the great quarterback [editor’s note: would we call him great?], the gritty north-south running, and the ball-hawking pass defense. The raw materials are there to make this a team that can go deep in the playoffs. They were down 20-3 after a dis-spiriting first half, but even in that miserable stretch of football you could see a lot of open passes where timing was a bit off, Bradford miscommunicated with a receiver, or the WR dropped it.

In the second half, the Eagles dialed up some blitzes and Bradford found his rhythm, throwing underneath to a wide range of targets time and time again. Ten different Eagles caught passes, including two receivers who almost everyone had forgotten –Miles Austin (two receptions on three targets for 22 yards) and Riley Cooper (three of four for 25). Darren Sproles showed that he will be a devastating weapon out of the slot or the backfield this year. And once the passing started to connect, DeMarco Murray and Ryan Mathews displayed their power.

Seeing all of those elements right in front of you, falling barely short of a great comeback? That was the biggest tragedy of all.

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55 Comments

  • Steve Mason Elite NHL Goalie September 14, 2015 at 11:41 pm

    GREAT QUARTERBACK?! Kyle, fire this hack.

    Reply
    • STEVE MASON ELITE NHL GOALIE September 15, 2015 at 3:30 am

      That sucks. I logged on and banged refresh until a story was posted. I really didn’t get as much attention as I needed. Well, maybe Tuesday will lead to some internet attention. I wish I knew my dad. He would be proud that I am a grown man and a troll.

      Reply
      • Steve Mason elite NHL Goalie September 15, 2015 at 7:16 am

        Wow. I don’t remember writing this at 3:30 AM on a week night. I must really reevaluate my life.

        That being said, I guess if this blog could call me an “ELITE NHL goaltender” I guess Sam Bradford can be called “great”

        Reply
        • Bob September 15, 2015 at 7:29 am

          Steve could not have written that. There are not enuf spelling mistakes. And he was busy getting lubed up for his nightly double fisting.

          Reply
  • Bob September 14, 2015 at 11:52 pm

    Mark. Your c0ck. Stop teasing us. How big? Chode? Shower or grower?

    Reply
    • sandusky September 15, 2015 at 9:10 am

      you’re a child molester aren’t you?

      Reply
  • George September 15, 2015 at 12:11 am

    Matt Bosher (the punter) kicks off for the Falcons, not Matt Bryant. Get it right. No 40 year-old kicker is going to kickoff.

    Reply
    • BringBackRichards September 15, 2015 at 12:50 am

      THIS. Guys, you want respect as a sports blog but you get this wrong? Can’t you afford to hire someone who at least know who’s doing what in a game? I usually like this blog and defend it but Jesus Christ.

      Reply
      • Kyle Scott September 15, 2015 at 8:57 am

        Who cares about the blog when I have these awesome t-shirts to make money off of?

        Reply
  • Union Jacks Wings September 15, 2015 at 12:12 am

    If your writing for a sports blog (or watched the game), you should know that Bryant doesn’t handle kickoffs. The punter Bosher does it.

    Reply
  • TBEmpire September 15, 2015 at 12:14 am

    No doubt Vegas stepped in on that 4th and 1, tons of money on the Eagles side.

    Reply
    • yea Dr. September 15, 2015 at 7:40 am

      No doubt.

      Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:14 am

      thats what i was thinking

      Reply
  • Real Recognize Real September 15, 2015 at 12:18 am

    1. Jim you’re fucking terrible.

    2. I can’t wait to listen to people wild out on the radio tomorrow.

    3. Chip will bail next year.

    Reply
    • sandusky September 15, 2015 at 9:11 am

      chip aint goin nowhere

      Reply
      • Breeze September 15, 2015 at 1:32 pm

        neither are you

        Reply
  • who are you September 15, 2015 at 12:51 am

    so all this guys gonna do is write shitty list-style articles about the eagles…?

    Reply
  • Kelly green is the right thing September 15, 2015 at 1:07 am

    Called this loss to the falcons three months ago. Fuck Jeff lurie’s fruity midnight green eagles

    Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:15 am

      if parkey makes the kick i guess you didn’t call shit huh?

      Reply
      • This Team Sucks September 15, 2015 at 8:45 pm

        Was this the first time you watched football? There was 2:32 left on the game clock. If you think the eagles defense was gonna hold to a 27-26 win just stop watching because you are a fucking complete moron. They got a 24-23 lead… What happened? Atlanta went back on the attack and put TIRE MARKS on that dogshit $63 million corner. Only reason Eagles had a chance in this was because Atlanta got conservative in the end. Just stop watching football if you blame the kicker for losses.

        Reply
  • Rotting corpse September 15, 2015 at 1:11 am

    As usual, philly fans totally overvalue their team and underestimate the opponent.

    A team rebuilding it’s defense against a team with two stud receivers. Tough matchup.

    Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:12 am

      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^this guy

      don’t over-react to this loss seattle and new england were 1-2 to start last season

      Reply
      • This Team Sucks September 15, 2015 at 8:49 pm

        Who fucking cares what they did last year? Those teams have a defense and a QB and they’ve ACTUALLY WON SOMETHING in recent memory. This team hasn’t won a playoff game in 7 years. You probably thought they were gonna blow Atlanta so just fall the fuck back already.

        Reply
  • Neighbor Dyke September 15, 2015 at 5:59 am

    How about that Julio Jones? Bwahahaha! Some fantasy “expert”.

    Reply
  • Nick Foles September 15, 2015 at 6:19 am

    Suckers.

    Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:13 am

      HAHAHAAAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

      let me catch my breath

      AAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAH

      dude thanks for that laugh i needed that

      Reply
  • Love September 15, 2015 at 7:16 am

    The Tuesday morning experts on here. I want a job that easy.

    Reply
    • This Team Sucks September 15, 2015 at 8:50 pm

      This is part of being a football fan. If you can’t handle it go watch tennis loser.

      Reply
  • Neighbor Mike September 15, 2015 at 7:54 am

    Can’t wait to give you my expert opinion for the upcoming weeks games. Let me give you a teaser. 50% of the teams will win…..tomorrow I will get into what percentage will lose. Book it.

    Reply
    • Breeze September 15, 2015 at 1:33 pm

      now, that was the funniest post of the day

      Reply
  • IgglesPhan September 15, 2015 at 7:56 am

    even maxwell was entertained by getting burned
    http://www.sbnation.com/lookit/2015/9/15/9328301/byron-maxwell-julio-jones-lol-yeah-he-got-torched

    Reply
    • ME & JULIO DOWN BY THE SCHOOLYARD September 15, 2015 at 9:02 am

      Whoa, Whoa, Whoa. Pasting links from another site? Do you work for CB?

      Reply
      • IgglesPhan September 15, 2015 at 12:29 pm

        interesting, now my link makes a line item for CB, thanks guys!

        Reply
  • bee September 15, 2015 at 8:22 am

    Cody Parkey should have been cut last night

    Reply
  • BRIANDAWKINS#20 September 15, 2015 at 8:24 am

    I BARELY SLEPT LAST NIGHT. THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE OUR YEAR BUT WE CANT EVEN BEAT THE FALCONS.

    WHY DID WE GET RID OF FOLES? HE BEAT SEATTLE YESTERDAY AND OUR QUARTERBACK WITH THE BAD KNEE CANT EVEN BEAT ATLANTA.

    7-9

    Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:17 am

      LOL you said it as a joke but thousands of idiots will call sports radio today and say that exact same thing. morons

      Reply
  • angry al September 15, 2015 at 8:36 am

    Season starts the same way last season ended. Dallas alone at first place.

    Reply
    • dude September 15, 2015 at 8:49 am

      Get the shit out of your mouth and throat.

      Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:18 am

      monday morning lets see if your still here…..something tells me you will be under a rock somewhere

      Reply
  • still in atlanta September 15, 2015 at 8:49 am

    Anyone up for the coke tour this morning? Yay.

    Reply
    • Big daddy graham September 15, 2015 at 8:57 am

      Dude, I blew so much fucking coke last night I thought my eyes were guna explode. Me and my buddy joe blew an ounce and 1/2 of disco shit in 2 hours.

      Reply
      • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:18 am

        how much of the kids college fund did that set you back LOL

        Reply
  • Homeless September 15, 2015 at 8:53 am

    Kyle told me to bet the house….Now I am homeless

    Reply
  • Typical radio caller September 15, 2015 at 8:55 am

    R E L A X …. Relax.
    It’s only the first game.
    Let’s not jump ship just yet
    This is a parady league
    We have to put 8 in the box

    Reply
    • Kyles below average size penis September 15, 2015 at 8:58 am

      I love this guy.

      Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:21 am

      below average radio caller:

      HOLY SHIT WE SHOULDVE KEPT SHADY AND FOLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      IM GOING TO COMMIT SUICIDE NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Reply
  • Drew September 15, 2015 at 9:09 am

    Lol…I don’t think you can fully blame Parkey on the kick…the field goal unit was running onto the field with 18 seconds on the play clock. That being said he hasn’t been solid in the preseason. Also, Peters shut down Beasley in the second half. It was a very sloppy game, but if they clean it up they win this game easy. Make like a Sixers fan and don’t panic.

    Reply
    • smartest guy in the room September 15, 2015 at 9:20 am

      exactly, same slow start as last year. first half was a mess and that was the end of it.

      Reply
    • Steve Mason Elite NHL Goalie September 15, 2015 at 9:29 am

      If they were playing a QB that protected the ball better than Ryan lats night the game is out of reach by the third quarter. Door swings both ways.

      Offense looked great in third quarter against one of the worst defenses in the NFL last year

      Reply
      • Steve Masons mother. September 15, 2015 at 11:32 am

        I hate you Steve. Did you know you were adopted?

        Reply
  • 0-49 September 15, 2015 at 9:39 am

    They lost to the god awful Falcons and you have morons on here trying to put a positive spin on it. Also, BRIANDAWKINS#20, are you a member of MENSA?

    Reply
  • Reality September 15, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa sheep baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…….FUCK OFF

    Reply
  • happy rams fan September 15, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    Foles beat last years best defence,
    Bradford lost to last years worst defence,
    Thanks for the $15 million discount and a draft pick

    Reply
  • happy rams fan September 15, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    If my rams stay here in st. louis I owe the eagles a shit load. Still cant believe you guys gave up soooo much for a slightly below average qb that we were 2 weeks away from cutting…. Still blows my mind that you guys were willing to throw this guy out a pro qb that went 27-2. any excuses you want …. a 27-2 qb is legit…. Chip kelly is dumb as fuck, FACT!!! but thanks!!! Oh by the way beagles dumb fucks,… we actually won a superbowl… how many u got? E-A-G-L-E-S!!! ,, Bahahahahahaha!!!!!!! http://www.sportsgrid.com/nfl/mnf-live-eagles-looking-like-the-losers-in-the-bradford-foles-trade/

    Reply
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