RUNNING a lot hurts Jalen.
EAGLES 25 – Bears 20
Categories include an EXCLUSIVE weekly Offensive Line Report (Rushing TD’s (6 points) + 3rd downs converted by handoffs (1 point) + sacks allowed (-2 points) = score); as well as Drive Killer (Int – FR – 4th down Tackles – FF – TD).
New Category Ace is for Kick return TD’s, Returners run-down, kicks blocked, etc.
Passing :(S) QB Jalen Hurts (22/37 – 59.4% – 315 – 0 – 2)
Rushing :(S) QB Jalen Hurts (17 – 61 – 3.5 – 3 – 0)
Receiving : (S) WR A.J. Brown (16 – 9 – 181 – 20.1 – 0)
Offensive Line Report/Enforcer : (3 (18) + 1 (1) – 1 (2) = 17 ) LT Jordan Mailata
Drive Killer :(S) OLB Haason Reddick (0 – 1 – 0 – 1 – 0)
Sack Leader :(S) OLB Haason Reddick (4 – 2.0 – 0 – 1)
Ace : RB Boston Scott: 58 yard KR (3 – 92 – 30.6 – 0)
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: Bears did the Eagles actually get around to doing? Well let’s see:
1) Lock The Box: Don’t mush-rush. Play the LB’s in shallow zones, and get aggressively after their QB with our front four. That was the call and that’s EXACTLY what we did. Three different Eagles had 2 sacks each, as DT Javon Hargrave (3 – 2.0 – 0 – 0), DE Josh Sweat (6 – 2.0 – 1 – 0) and OLB Haason Reddick (4 – 2.0 – 0 – 1) all laid hands upon Chicago’s QB.
Aside from 95 rushing yards to a run-first QB, we gave up just 62 yards on 15 carries (4.1) to the rest of their team. Some of the yards were in small chunks, but most were in small pieces and slivers. So it was never something they could rely on, or use to complement the rest of their offense. (DONE)
2) Man Coverage on the Corners: Chicago’s top three WR’s COMBINED for 4 catches, 72 yards (18.0 yards per catch), with a 35 yard score on a blown coverage. Our CB’s played up in the receivers faces and reduced them essentially to spectators. (DONE)
3) Use Play-action: You can’t use play-action if you don’t hand the ball off. In the first half of this game RB Miles Sanders (11 – 42 – 3.8 – 0 – 1) carried the ball all of 4 times. That’s a recipe for getting your QB killed. (NOT DONE)
4) Quick Hook: We never got the chance to pull our starters because we never had a 20 point lead. However, the contingency plan of hammering the football was also not even glanced at. (NOT DONE)
This week 2 of the Four Things was enough for us to grab a the “Dub”. Next week we go to Dallas to clinch the NFC East, and guarantee home-field advantage (and then a neutral site), throughout the playoffs.
On The Whole:
Let me get this gripe in, first. I’ve been very vocal about how much wear and tear all the running will put on Hurts. I haven’t talked about punishment. I’ve talked about wear and tear. I don’t know if YOU noticed it, but Hurts looks slower running these days. More catchable. That’s the wear and tear. Like on your own joints!
With Hurts being easier to catch, that means he’s now easier to hit. Notice the kind of hits he took in this game? In September/October no one repeatedly got those sort of shots on him. They did in this one! And he’s only going to keep getting up slower and slower. You want to watch the Cowboys knock him out of a game? Me either. They have to ease up on the called runs.
Thanks to QB Tom Brady and Deflate-gate, I’ve repeatedly talked about how cold weather affects footballs. Early in the game I figured this was why Hurts’ ball placement was so spotty. Turns out his hands were numb, and he was having trouble seeing. He doesn’t think Philly will get as cold as Chicago did. Somebody tell him!
Do I think this team looked past Chicago, to next week’s match-up with Dallas? In the fourth quarter, on the two point conversion, Miles Sanders went into motion, setting off a series of pre-snap shifts. When he went by the TE, Sanders touched him on the rear, that TE shifted and touched the rear of the next man to go into a shift.
For those who don’t know what that was, it was the Eagles running silent, to handle noise. Soldier Field wasn’t loud at that point, so why do that? Because it was practice for next week. The Eagles used this Bears game as a first practice for Dallas. It’s not just players that looked past the Bears. The coaching staff was doing it too.