Your 2020 Eagles are not enjoyable to watch.
They’re not enjoyable when they win.
Not enjoyable when they lose.
Not enjoyable to write about.
Not enjoyable to read about.
But if you are reading, then thank you. Bless your heart. Come join me on this Monday morning journey as we try to figure out how the Eagles came off the bye week to deliver that horse shit performance.
They had two weeks to prepare for a team they already played and beat, and THAT was the performance we got? Really? The offense couldn’t do “diddly poo,” as the great Jim Mora once said. The defense made Daniel Jones and Wayne Gallman look like the second coming of Michael Vick and Warrick Dunn. The special teams units were a joke and Doug Pederson couldn’t have coached his way out of a paper bag while watching his squad commit 11 penalties for 74 yards.
It’s one of those things where you don’t know whether to laugh, cry, or shoot your TV with a gun, like that idiot Cowboys fan from a few weeks back.
The Giants absolutely stink. You’ve got a healthy Jalen Reagor, Lane Johnson, Dallas Goedert, Malik Jackson, and Alshon Jeffery. All you have to do is beat a terrible team and you’re 4-4-1 with a healthy division lead and a new lease on life.
Instead the Eagles put their own heads in the toilet and flushed it.
1. Swiss cheese defense
Were the Eagles aware that the game started? They worked their way into this contest at sloth-like speed (the animal, not the guy from The Goonies).
For context in just how bad the Birds’ defense was on Sunday, here’s how the Giants entered the game offensively:
- 18.7 points per game (31st)
- 298.2 total yards per game (31st)
- 106 rushing yards per game (21st)
- 192.2 passing yards per game (30th)
The Eagles went on to concede 27 points, 382 yards, 151 on the ground, and 231 through the air. That is absolutely ridiculous for a unit that, just about a month ago, scored three takeaways and held New York to 325 total, 80 of those yards coming on a run in which Daniel Jones fucking fell down after tripping over his own feet.
Perhaps the thing that sums up the pitiful defensive performance was the fact that Jim Schwartz’s unit followed up an Eagles touchdown by allowing New York to go six plays for 75 yards in just 2:42, which killed any momentum the Birds had put together in the third quarter.
2. Run the football, please
Eagles running backs carried the ball 19 times for 153 yards. That’s an 8.05 average.
Even if you remove Boston Scott’s 56-yard score, that’s 18 carries for 97 yards, which is 5.38 and a pretty solid number.
There’s just no reason why Miles Sanders should only run the ball 15 times in a game like this. You can add two catches and make his number 17 total touches, but is the guy ever going to be able to handle the ball 20+ times per game? I know he’s just coming off injury and he’s not a durable Derrick Henry type of runner, but he had a 5.7 average in this game and yet Doug still threw the ball 37 times on the afternoon for a 5.6 average.
Think about that.
They averaged 5.6 yards per pass and 8.05 yards per run.
This team really needs to go out and get a complementary back for Miles Sanders, and we’ll do our best to replicate 2005 Reggie Bush and Lendale White.
3. Carson Wentz is whatever
Carson didn’t turn the ball over, which was nice, but Daniel Jones totally outplayed him. There’s no disputing that. Wentz had a couple of nice throws in the second half but Jones went 21 for 28 for 244 yards and Carson was 21 for 37 while barely cresting 200.
Everything is just so tedious for him, isn’t it? Simple throws don’t look simple. Every other play it looks like we’ve got a headless chicken running around trying to make plays, and it shouldn’t have to be like that. He’s got Reagor, Jeffery, Travis Fulgham, Goedert, and Miles Sanders out there. Surely the onus does not need to be on Wentz to try hero ball as if we’re playing flag football at Fairmount Park with a QB who still wears his state championship ring even though he was the third stringer at Archbishop Wood.
I think Carson (and Doug’s) game was summed up perfectly by that 4th and 10 play where they tried to throw back shoulder at New York’s best cornerback. That’s the decision and QB read? Throwing at James Bradberry on 4th and 10?
4. the offensive line and institutional arrogance
Russ loves to use the term “institutional arrogance” to describe the Birds, which basically just means that they’re smarter than everybody else. They thumb their nose at us peasants, the plebes who don’t know anything about football.
Sometimes things are so obvious though that it doesn’t matter whether you’re Mike Mayock or Mike from King of Prussia.
Case in point – why would you start Sua Opeta at left guard? If Nate Herbig can’t go, that’s understood, but you went out and re-signed Jason Peters originally to play GUARD this year. Now you’ve got him back at left tackle and Jordan Mailata is sitting on the bench doing nothing.
“We just felt that was the best five,” Pederson said after the game.
Dude, Doug, it’s not. That’s not your best five.
The Eagles would have been MUCH BETTER OFF with Mailata at left tackle, Peters and Matt Pryor at the guard spots, and then Jason Kelce and Lane Johnson rounding out the line. That’s how you get your five best AVAILABLE linemen on the field and keep Opeta on the bench.
But no, the Eagles are smarter than everybody else. Howie Roseman is the smartest guy in the room. They can never keep it simple or do something obvious. You have to bend over backwards for 38 year old Jason Peters, then make luxury draft selections in the 2nd and 3rd round on a gadget quarterback and project linebacker. Then you laugh off the criticism because you think we’re dumb and don’t get it.
It’s institutional arrogance.
5. Hurts so bad
Swear to God, if I gotta see Carson Wentz line up at receiver one more time, just so Jalen Hurts can run a predictable zone read, I’m gonna… I don’t know. Do something stupid. Stick needles in my eyes or drink black coffee (disgusting).
This is a column I wrote twice already. The first one was called “You Don’t Always Have to Run Jalen Hurts; He Can Throw the Ball, Too.“ The second was called “Doug Pederson Needs to Trust Jalen Hurts and Take off the Training Wheels.”
You just can’t keep running this shit with Hurts unless you’re gonna take Carson off the field and/or let Jalen throw the ball. Again, dude threw for 3,800 yards at Oklahoma. He is not a scrub, yet everything you give him is a zone read of sorts, so defenses simply tee off on him.
This is just a zone read. They pull Lane Johnson and Matt Pryor and then Hurts is left to read the unblocked defensive end.
How do we know for sure it’s not a passing play?
The receivers are run blocking, or just running half-assed dummy routes, because they know these plays are a joke. Lane Johnson totally whiffs on his guy and the Eagles take a one yard loss on a play that might have gone for one or two.
It’s just so bad. Enough already. You drafted this guy second round and you are letting him run nothing but zone read, not even a simple RPO or anything like that! You don’t let him throw the ball. You stick your quarterback in a receiver position and he serves as nothing, not even a decoy.
Please either remove the Jalen Hurts package from the playbook entirely or expand it, because you’re getting nothing from it as currently constructed.
6. Mistakes and breaks
If numbered bullets had an odor, this one would smell like Oscar the Grouch:
- Malik Jackson 3rd down penalty on the opening drive.
- Carson Wentz tripping and falling over on a third down snap.
- Needed Jalen Reagor to field that punt before it rolled for 71 total yards.
- Jason Kelce LOW SNAPS all day long.
- Multiple receiver false starts.
- Block in the back on the kick return to start the second half.
- Having to blow a timeout at 7:47 in the third quarter.
- Needed Greg Ward to field the punt he watched go over his head.
- Defensive holding to wipe out a sack.
- Miles Sanders dropping an easy check down pass.
- Giants COWARDLY deciding to punt right before halftime.
- Dion Lewis penalty knocking the G-Men out of field goal range.
- No definitive evidence to overturn the Boston Scott TD run.
- Kelce snapping the ball into Jalen Hurts’ feet and then Miles Sanders somehow turns it into a first down run.
- Darius Slayton dropping a wide-open third down pass.
- Holding to wipe out Daniel Jones 2nd TD run.
The Giants weren’t exactly world beaters on the day, but they limited their mistakes and didn’t turn the ball over.
7. Ancillary wins and losses
- lost time of possession 31:43 to 28:17
- 0 turnover margin
- 0-9 on third down (0%)
- 1-3 on fourth down (33%)
- allowed Giants to go 5-14 on third down (35.7%)
- lost 18 yards on three sacks
- 1-1 success rate in the red zone (only got there once, which was pathetic)
- 11 penalties for 74 yards
- 22 first downs, 22 for New York
- ran 63 total plays, New York 67
Zero for nine on third down is absolutely incredible. You could not be worse if you tried. And 11 penalties for a team with two weeks to prepare is barf-worthy. It makes me wanna ralph everywhere.
8. Doug’s best call?
Dunno. I guess the slip/tunnel screen on the lone 4th down conversion was nice.
9. Doug’s worst call?
A 4th and 5 hard count? From the opponent’s 45? At that point you might as well just go for it, and whatever with the cutesy stuff.
But let’s get to the big story on Action News, and that’s Doug’s decision to go for two while down 21-17.
Doug, listen –
KICK THE FUCKING EXTRA POINT TO MAKE IT A THREE-POINT GAME.
KICK THE EXTRA POINT!!!
But no, you had to try and fail to go for two, so now you’re down by four points and can’t tie the game with a field goal. You already got that two-point conversion earlier to cut the deficit to three. Keep the deficit at three. Do not squander the earlier conversion that you hit.
Here’s Doug’s postgame explanation:
“The decision making there was to obviously trust my guys upstairs. We had just converted one before and felt good with the play call. You go for it and make it when the field goal can win the game for you later on in the fourth quarter. At least it gives you an opportunity to know what you need to do to win the game.”
Uh, okay, yes, if you cut the lead to two, you can win with a field goal, but holy shit dude, there’s so much football left to play. Kick the XP (easy), instead of trying the conversion (harder), and avoid the risk of putting yourself in a hole.
This is not hard. The analytics people can take a fucking hike.
10. The broadcast
Kevin Kugler and Chris Spielman with Laura Okmin.
I appreciated this line:
“Ever since, Travis Fulgham has been the best wide receiver in the NFL on the Eagles.” That one made me chuckle.
Honestly, I didn’t pay much attention to these three since I was so annoyed and distracted by the dog shit performance, but how about this:
Instead of a Panthers/Bucs game break, can we please get a replay of Carson Wentz tripping over himself? From now until forever, people want replays of their own game more than highlights from another game. We really do not care about Tampa and Carolina; please just show us the replays in our game.
We are approaching critical mass with NFL broadcast replays. We need to hold an intervention. Maybe storm the FOX and CBS offices (peacefully) and demand change.
Thanks for reading the column, and good morning. This entire game was a shit sandwich: