RUNNING down a dream.
EAGLES 40 – Saints 29
New categories include an EXCLUSIVE weekly Offensive Line Report (Rushing TD’s + 3rd and 4th downs converted:missed of 2 yards or less – sacks allowed); as well as Drive Killer (Int – FR – 4th down Tackles – FF – TD).
Passing: (S) QB Jalen Hurts (13/24 – 54.1% – 147 – 0 – 0)
Rushing: (S) RB Miles Sanders (16 – 94 – 5.8 – 0 – 1)
Receiving: (S) TE Dallas Goedert (8 – 5 – 62 – 12.4 – 0
Offensive Line Report: (3 + 5:1 – 3)
Drive Killer: (S) MLB T.J. Edwards (1 – 1 – 0 – 0 – 0)
Sack Leader: NO QUALIFIER
I hear you asking, “What about all the stuff that stats don’t reveal?” Well, that’s the reason for these Four Things articles. It’s to point out what we need to address BEFORE the game. Then AFTER the game, there’s a no-bullshit assessment of whether or not the Eagles did any of what they needed to do, to ensure the win.
So how much of what I mentioned in Four Things: Saints did the Eagles actually get around to doing? Well let’s see:
1) Play Man Press: We started out playing this, and played a fair amount of it. We also played a lot of off coverage which allowed the Saints back-up QB to throw for 200 yards and three scores.
It also contributed to why the Eagles didn’t have a single sack, against a team missing both of it’s starting OT’s. This was one of several things which probably went overlooked, due to the score. We did this, but not nearly as consistently as we should have. (DONE)
2) Force Malcolm Out Of the Middle:
We did a GREAT job of this! We kept S Malcolm Jenkins (4 – 0 – 0 – 0) out of the box, and so we kept him from impacting the game, in any meaningful way. Jenkins had all of FOUR tackles, in this game, despite us handing it off 32 times. He was kept safely away from the action, and our RB’s ran for 173 yards, on 32 totes (5.4 ypc), largely due to an uncongested middle of the field. (DONE)
3) Just Make the Tackle: Great job here as well. We didn’t see a bunch of piles moving, as our defenders clawed pointlessly at the ball. The one forced fumble we got from DT Fletcher Cox (2 – 0 – 1 – 1), was him reaching out to make a tackle, and grabbing the bicep of the opposing RB. BOOM. Ball popped out like Janet Jackson’s nipple.
Nothing extra needed. No holding the ball-carrier up. No clawing for the pig, and letting him churn out extra yards. Just went for the tackle and was rewarded by the football gods. (DONE)
4) Use Play-Action: There was some play-action, but not nearly enough to qualify it here. More to the point, it was deployed poorly. Understand, the game started with a designed QB run, which the Eagles kept repeating. On the day, Hurts threw the ball 24 times, and ran it 18.
There was never a point when the defense got to be more focused on some other player, than they were on Hurts. As a result, the defense keyed on him, never truly buying his fake hand-offs, pressuring him into some ugly scrambles, sacking him 3 times, and keeping the question of his accuracy a viable subject. None of those are the result of play-action used effectively. (NOT DONE)
That brings this week’s tally to 3 of Four Things. Next week we take a 90 minute drive to the cesspool that is Rutherford, New Jersey. Then we’ll do what we need to, and walk out of there as a .500 football team. At which point we’ll have seriously positioned ourselves to be in the playoff discussion.
On The Whole:
There are several things about this victory that bug me. They were bugging me even during the game. However, this is the first time we’ve had consecutive wins since November 1st of last season. So I’m going to let the fans enjoy this Four Things Reviewed.
Enjoy your turkey. We’ll talk soon. (Unless you decide to reach out to me sooner.)