The Philadelphia Eagles are no longer the only unbeaten club in the NFL after losing a shocking game at home to the Washington Commanders in Week 10.
I know, what a bummer, isn’t it? Fortunately, the Eagles still led all teams in records with an 8-1 mark, and they continue to hold that distinction going into Week 12 after Nick Sirianni’s team pulled off an incredible comeback victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
The Birds entered Frank Reich’s former home, stared Jeff Saturday in the eyes, and secured yet another victory in yet another manner, even though it wasn’t always simple and definitely wasn’t pretty. Philadelphia’s offence rallied around their quarterback, everyone rallied around their defence, and the Eagles are now one step closer to winning the division, obtaining a first-week bye, and having a lengthy and successful playoff run in a sport that doesn’t award points for aesthetic enjoyment.
Philadelphia Eagles offensive grade – B
The Eagles offense struggled in Week 11—at least until it didn’t. The Eagles scored just three points in the first half and 10 before the penultimate drive as they struggled to score against an uber-green head coach who seemed to have a directive to dominate time of possession.
The Eagles sorely missed Dallas Goedert in the air. The Eagles struggled to get yards in the middle of the field, where Goedert generally excels, despite him becoming one of the team’s top passing targets. His substitutes, Jack Stoll and Grant Calcaterra, combined for only one catch for seven yards.
The Eagles will need to find a way to replace Goedert’s performance now that he is on injured reserve, whether it be by utilizing more four-receiver sets with Zach Pascal filling a hybrid position as a blocking receiver or by having A.J. Brown play more in the slot.
And down there? Jalen Hurts led the team in rushes and yards, so do I really need to say anything else?
Outstanding Artist: Jalen Hurts
It would have been impossible to describe hurts as a “standout player” for much of the game, but my goodness, that final offensive drive was definitely a performance fit for a star, as Charles Davis noted on commentary.
Hurts made a crucial connection to Brown on second and 25, was wise enough to target Miles Sanders down the field when he had a linebacker on him, even if it resulted in a flag instead of a huge connection, and then played a significant role in rushing into the end zone for the game-winning touchdown. Hurts was sacked three times, lost two fumbles, and finished the game with a 1 at the beginning of his passing total.
Hurts gave his team the lead going into the game’s last drive, and in the end, the defence held. He didn’t throw for 350 yards, and he did run the ball more in Week 11 than any other game this season aside from Week 1.
Philadelphia Eagles defensive grade – B
If this statement has already been made, I apologize, but the Eagles’ defense was poor—at least until it wasn’t. Jonathan Gannon’s defense, which was put to the test right away by Wisconsin’s power rusher Jonathan Taylor, looked better with Lindell Joseph in the middle but was unable to stop him, giving up 84 yards on 22 carries to Taylor alone.
Fortunately, Matt Ryan only completed 23 of his 32 passes for 213 yards and no touchdowns, so the passing defense wasn’t as easily exploited. The entire City of Brotherly Love trusted Gannon’s defense to get a stop when the Eagles were down by one and the game was on the line. Even while it wasn’t always attractive, it did that.
Lindell Joseph and Ndamukong Suh are outstanding athletes.
On paper, the Eagles defensive linemen C.J. Gardner-Johnson, T.J. Edwards, and Brandon Graham probably merit more praise than Suh and Joseph, but goodness gracious, the veteran defensive tackles have been on the team for less than a week and they’re already making plays, combining for seven tackles, including a solo tackle from each, and combining to sack Matt Ryan once.
Suh provided versatility surrounding Joseph by playing in the four-man front and receiving some push for his efforts. Joseph looked better in the middle of the defense than any other alternative the team has used in lieu of Jordan Davis, even though he wasn’t a magical fix in the middle of the defense. Although neither play appears to have the potential to become a South Philly superstar, they appear to be valuable parts of a defense that could use them.