Over the past couple days at the Novacare Complex, players and coaches have tried to articulate what exactly has gone wrong with an offense that is scoring just 17.1 points per game, 28th in the league.
During training camp, it seemed like the 2012 version wouldn’t be far off from last year’s group. Michael Vick and company produced 64 pass plays of 20+ yards in 2011, eighth-best in the league. The plan was to cut down on turnovers, get DeSean Jackson back on track and resume the high-flying, big-play attack.
But a few things happened to derail that plan. Demetress Bell failed to be even adequate filling in for Jason Peters at left tackle. Another hole was created when center Jason Kelce suffered a season-ending injury. And the offense failed to fix the turnover problem.
After the Cardinals game, Andy Reid and Marty Mornhinweg decided to switch things up. More balance, coupled with a methodical passing game, was Plan B. If the defense could come up big (like it did against the Giants), perhaps that kind of offense would be good enough for the Eagles to get into the playoffs.
Nope. That hasn’t worked either.
One reason why Andy Reid is sticking with Michael Vick is because the quarterback has actually shown real improvement in a couple key areas.
Most notably, against the blitz.
In the last three games (while the offense has still had plenty of issues), the Eagles have done damage against the blitz. Just look at the numbers. Vick is 29-for-42 for 405 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions against extra pressure. That’s a 69 percent completion percentage and 9.6 yards-per-attempt.
If you’re a glass-half-full kind of fan (c’mon, there has to be one or two of you out there), this is something to be optimistic about looking ahead to the final 10 games.
Since the Eagles were on bye last week, there’s no new All-22 to break down. So instead, let’s take a look at some of the ways the offense has beaten the blitz in the last few weeks.
Why aren’t the Eagles hitting on more big plays? Michael Vick still has a big-time arm. They still have an outstanding vertical downfield threat in DeSean Jackson and other options like Jeremy Maclin and Brent Celek.
The way I see it, there are three factors. Let’s knock them out, one-by-one, with a little help from the All-22.
Andy Reid’s next shake-up will not include Michael Vick or Marty Mornhinweg, according to a report.
Vick will be the starting quarterback a week from Sunday when the Eagles host the Falcons, and Mornhinweg will continue with play-calling duties.
Given everything that’s happened this week, and because it’s the bye, now is a good time to assess the state of the Eagles. From Marty Mornhinweg to Andy Reid to Michael Vick, here are three thoughts on the Birds.
Here’s what I saw from the Eagles’ offense after having reviewed the All-22 tape.
Tagged with: Brent Celek
, Danny Watkins
, Demetress Bell
, DeSean Jackson
, Evan Mathis
, Jeremy Maclin
, LeSean McCoy
, Marty Mornhinweg
, Michael Vick
, Sheil Kapadia
, Todd Herremans
Posted in All-22
Andy Reid’s fate in Philadelphia will be determined by what happens in the next 10 games.
Owner Jeffrey Lurie put a number on it during his preseason address, confirming that another 8-8 year would not be enough for the head coach to stay.
That means the Eagles need to go at least 6-4 (possibly 7-3) for Reid to stay put.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think Reid is overly concerned with his job security. If Lurie does let him go, he’ll find a job elsewhere. But yesterday’s comments made Reid sound very much like a guy who is willing to do something drastic during the bye week to get his team on track.
Andy Reid used the word “pathetic” to describe the last two offensive drives against the Lions Sunday. Deemed the league-high 17 turnovers his team has committed “ridiculous.”
The ever-even Reid rarely takes his criticisms to that level. This loss is clearly causing the head coach some extra irritation. Now starts a bye week where he will go back and evaluate and “tear things apart.” What changes will come of it? Reid left his options open.
DeSean Jackson is on pace for a career-high in receptions and yards this season. He has yet to drop a pass and leads Eagles receivers in most statistical categories. He is invested and it shows.
Noticeably absent, though, are the big plays. Jackson just hasn’t landed many haymakers this season.
Given that the Eagles’ offense is averaging just 16 points per game (second-worst in the NFL), you get the sense that Andy Reid and Marty Mornhinweg are willing to try just about anything to get Michael Vick and company on the right track.
Since Week 2, the offense has been using some form of the no-huddle throughout games – not just at the end of halves. What’s the reasoning behind the move? Well, not all no-huddles are created equal.