I will say this, if the Philadelphia Eagles could have played more like they did in the fourth quarter in this 30-17 nightmare loss to the Atlanta Falcons than they did the first three quarters, you may have seen a different outcome. However, they do play four quarters for a reason. This was kind a reverse of the last couple losses to the Detroit Lions and the Pittsburgh Steelers. In those games, they decided to play like garbage to close the game out, whereas on Sunday they figured they’d just stink it up for the first three before showing signs of life late. A lot to discuss, so let’s look at the game.
What I liked…
-There was plenty of blame to go around for this loss, but this time, Michael Vick is low on the list of offenders. He was hardly great – or even good – but he didn’t turn the ball over at least. That’s how bad he’s been. I’m listing him as something I liked only because he didn’t hand the game to the Falcons via fumbles and interceptions.
-LeSean McCoy showed, yet again, why they need to use him more. When did they move the ball effectively? When they were using Shady. His first down on third down right before they put up their second touchdown was amazing. Dick Stockton said it best, “that was ALL Shady!”
-Casey Matthews got the start today (I’ll get to more on that later) and didn’t embarrass himself. He also blocked a punt that could have been huge if the offense was worth a damn and could have done something with it.
-Defense finally got a sack?
-I’m as impressed with Falcons DE Kroy Biermann as I was unimpressed with Todd Herremans late in the game. Biermann burned Herremans badly to sack Vick. Next play? Holding penalty on Herremans (that means, umm, you got beat). And then he blew up Brent Celek and Stanley Havili, ran past Herremans again and tracked Vick down…again. For a guy that not many people know, that was very impressive.
-Say what you want (and I’m sure you will), but as awful as this team was today, they still had a chance to win it deep into the fourth quarter. I have no idea how, but they were still in the game…technically.
…and not so much…
-So, why was Casey Matthews starting? Well, it seems that Mychal Kendricks missed a team meeting and was benched as punishment. This team is reeling heading into the bye week and you miss a team meeting? Where is the focus? He was also called for three penalties in coverage, which is just unacceptable. Awful game for Kendricks. Oh and he dropped a ball he should have intercepted too.
-Awful game for the entire defense. They look disinterested. Is this on Todd Bowles? I don’t know that. But, I do know that Juan Castillo’s defenses haven’t given up 30 points in a game this year. I also know that the Falcons scored points on each of their first six possessions. They didn’t punt until well into the 4th quarter. How can any team win like that?
-No turnovers caused again. So, if this defense doesn’t get sacks, can’t get a turnover and can’t get off the field on third downs…what is it doing? Terrible.
-I’m done with Brandon Boykin returning kicks. If he catches it in the field, he’s had some success. But, if he catches it in the end zone (which is usually the case), he’s lucky if he gets it to the 16-yard line. How does no one else notice this? No one can tell him to just take a knee? He repeatedly gets stopped before the 20…so…why not just take the touchback? Unconscionable.
-Nnamdi got flat-out torched on the Julio Jones touchdown. Didn’t get a bump and can’t run with Julio.
-Where have Jason Babin and Trent Cole been? You don’t even hear their names called. At what point do you dress Vinny Curry and see what he can do?
-Offensive play calling was dreadful again today. They ignored Shady (again) until they were down three scores in the second half. Oh now you commit to the run.
-If you’re continually starting off slow offensively every game, maybe those 15 scripted plays are no good? Just a thought?
-This offensive line is pretty bad. We know this.
-This team has too many problems for anyone to think that they are going to turn it around. Sure, they are only 3-4, which isn’t the end of the world, but when you watch these games you don’t see any signs that things will get better.
-Nate Allen has to be kidding with that attempted tackle of Jacquizz Rodgers in the back field.