Lost

Posted: November 22nd, 2020 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 2 Comments »

Another week, another L. The Eagles lost to the Browns 22-17 in an ugly game on a rainy, sloppy Sunday afternoon. There were mistakes on offense, defense and special teams. There were questionable coaching decisions. In other words, the Eagles stuck to their 2020 script.

Ugh.

We keep waiting for the light to go on. No one expects perfection, but some signs that this team is working past the mistakes that have plagued it all year long. The offense finally has playmakers back. Miles Sanders looks terrific. Jalen Reagor and Travis Fulgham give the Eagles a pair of young, athletic receivers. Dallas Goedert is coming alive. Isaac Seumalo came back and gave the team a good OG for the first time in a while.

Despite that, the offense struggled in a major way. They needed some luck to get to 17 points (both TD drives started in CLE territory). Carson Wentz produced nine points for the Browns, throwing a pick-six and taking a sack in the end zone. Both plays involved clear hesitation on Wentz’s part. He remains physically gifted, but he’s a mess between the ears right now.

Wentz said after the game that he’s playing aggressive, confident football. Clearly he’s not watching the guy who plays QB for the Eagles.

The offense wasn’t particularly compelling from a schematic standpoint. If your QB is struggling, help him out. Figure out how to get him in a rhythm. And stick with the running game when it is working.

What’s so troubling is that the Eagles limped into the bye off a pair of ugly wins. They had extra time since they played on a Thursday night before the bye. The coaches had a chance to self-scout and find ideas for fixing the offense. The team started to get healthy and key players returned. The results have been two bad losses and only 17 points per game in them.

Right now it feels like no one has a clue how to fix Wentz and the offense. And that’s a big problem.

If this team was losing due to injuries and the weird season, you could live with that. That happened back in 2005. When you had Mike McMahon, Darnerian McCants and Ryan Moats trying to replace McNabb, TO and Brian Westbrook, you could understand losing and struggling. We’re looking at Wentz and Sanders and Reagor and Fulgham and Goedert. These guys are the key to the offense for the next few years.

Jeffrey Lurie should be very worried. Something is lost in translation. What is the problem: the messengers, the message or the guys receiving it? The franchise QB is a mess. That’s enough to make you question everyone, but then you look at the rest of the offense and there really are problems everywhere. There isn’t anything compelling about the Eagles offense right now.

The defense is hardly perfect, but they were the better unit today and they’ve been the better unit this year. The defense needs talent more than anything. Avonte Maddox has shown that he’s not meant to be a starting outside CB. Put him in the slot or back at safety. Alex Singleton has developed into a solid LB, but it sure would be nice to have an impact player in the middle of the field (S or LB).

The defense did have three offside penalties on Sunday. That’s been a problem recently and they tend to come at key moments. The lack of discipline is frustrating. Jalen Mills blew a coverage that led to a big play and resulted in a field goal. The whole point in having Mills at safety is to take advantage of his cover skills. He doesn’t have CB speed, but is okay for safety. Mills is average as a blitzer, hitter and tackler. If he’s making coverage mistakes, why play him?

Special teams continues to be an erratic area. They blocked a FG, which prevented three points, but Greg Ward failed to field a punt deep in Eagles territory. The ball was downed at the 2-yard line. That resulted in the safety and a subsequent FG. You’re giving away five points there.

The Eagles are now 3-6-1. They will fall out of first place next week (unless they shock Seattle). Reality should be starting to set in for Doug, Howie and the organization. This is a bad team. They need to have one eye on this year and one on the future.

2020 is a lost cause.

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