Roob's observations after Eagles' embarrassing loss to Browns originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
Another catastrophe for Carson Wentz. Another coaching abomination for Doug Pederson. Another organization-wide embarrassment.
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Browns 22, Eagles 17.
Six weeks to go.
Because I don’t care who’s in first place today in the NFC East, the Eagles are not winning this division.
Here’s our 10 Instant Observations off a gruesome loss to a team that hasn't made the playoffs in 18 years.
1. It’s not a question of whether Carson or Doug is responsible for this train wreck of an offense. It’s both of them. Terrible quarterback. Terrible head coach. And it keeps happening and nothing is changing and this team is an embarrassment right now. Carson has lost all sense of pocket awareness, isn’t seeing the field and continues making terrible decisions. And Doug has no sense for getting Wentz into a rhythm, calling the right plays at the right time or balancing the run and pass. Injuries are no longer an excuse. There are no excuses for this disaster. If Doug won’t give up play calling, Jeff Lurie needs to make him give it up. This is like something out of a Dana Bible nightmare. This can’t be allowed to continue. It's not going to change on its own.
2. Quarterbacks have a salary cap hit. Coaches don’t. Sitting here on Nov. 22, 2020, I don’t know how Doug survives this.
3. If one play symbolizes the Eagles’ offensive struggles this year it’s Wentz standing there in the end zone and waiting and waiting and waiting and — OOF, getting sacked for a safety. How a guy in his fifth year can take a safety in that situation instead of unloading the football is unfathomable. WHAT ARE YOU DOING???
4. I can’t stop thinking about Wentz’s NFL debut against the Browns on opening day of 2016. Here’s a 23-year-old kid out of a football championship subdivision school, he had missed a good chunk of training camp, had mediocre wide receivers, had barely played in the preseason, was the No. 3 QB two weeks before the opener. And then he goes out there and is 22-for-37 for 278 yards, 2 TDs and 0 INTs and a 101.0 passer rating in a 29-10 win. What on Earth HAPPENED?
5. Seven 1st-half points against the Cowboys, three against the Giants last week and none against the Browns on Sunday. First time since 2012 - Andy Reid’s last year - the Eagles have gone three straight games scoring seven or fewer 1st-half points. When a team manages just 10 first-half points in a three-game stretch, that’s a team that’s simply not prepared, and that falls squarely on the head coach. The Eagles have had one halftime lead in their last six games. Tough way to win. For this team, an impossible way to win.
6. I’m on the record as saying that when Jason Peters came back, it made the most sense to play him at left tackle and sit Jordan Mailata. Never mind. J.P. can’t play anymore. That may have been the worst game of his career. Imagine if the Browns had Myles Garrett? Jordan Mailata at least will give you an honest effort, and he’s got some upside. I just can’t watch Jason Peters try to play left tackle anymore. You know what? Cut him.
7. The defense only gave up 13 points, and that should be enough to win a football game. But for crying out loud, how often do we have to see this unit give up points as soon as the offense scores? Both Cleveland scores followed Eagles scores, and I don’t care how many points you allow, if you all of a sudden go soft right when your team needs you the most, you’re not a good defense. The Eagles closed to within two points on a Jake Elliott field goal early in the third quarter, they’ve got some momentum, and three plays later, there goes Nick Chubb for 54 yards and a couple plays later the Browns score and make it a two-possession game again. Why do I feel like if the Eagles scored 38 points, the defense would have given up 41?
8. This one stat pretty much tells you about the two head coaches, their philosophies, their play calling and their approach:
- Eagles rushing yards: 19-for-96 in the first half, 6-for-10 in the second half
- Browns rushing yards: 13-for-18 in the first half, 27-for-119 in the second half
For crying out loud, if you’re going to commit to the running attack, you have to commit to it for more than ONE SERIES.
9. The Eagles came out on their first drive with a good scheme, a smart game plan, lots of Miles Sanders and Boston Scott, picking up 71 yards and four first downs. It ended with Sanders fumbling on the 4-yard-line, but the disturbing thing is how as the game went on, the offense steadily began to deteriorate. The crispness and execution we saw on that first drive disappeared. Browns defensive coordinator Joe Woods adjusted and Pederson had no answers. Averaging netting 71 yards on their first drive and 53 on their next, the Eagles averaged 13 yards on their next 11 drives before some garbage time yards. At one point the Eagles had two first downs in the span of seven drives. Inexcusable.
10. A couple positives. Alex Singleton, who didn’t even start getting regular defensive reps until Week 6, is a player. Active, tough against the run, around the ball. It’s been a while since a homegrown Eagles linebacker helped this team. Jordan Hicks for a couple years. Mychal Kendricks before that. And Richard Rodgers has really given the Eagles a lift with Zach Ertz out. This is a veteran tight end who caught 13 passes from 2017 through 2019, but he had 4-for-52 with a TD Sunday and is now 23-for-296 since getting his first offensive snaps in Week 3. Rodgers wasn’t even in training camp with the Eagles, but he’s a smart, crafty veteran with good hands, and if Ertz isn’t here next year the Eagles would be in good shape with Dallas Goedert and Rodgers.
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