Here’s a position-by-position look at what we saw from the Eagles’ offense against the Packers.
* I thought Nick Foles played great against Oakland. This was a bit of an uneven performance. I know that seems crazy to say, considering he posted a 149.3 passer rating, but I’ll try to explain.
* There were a couple decisions that could have been costly. In the second quarter, Foles was being pressured and just launched a pass up for grabs. It was in the direction of DeSean Jackson, but there were defenders nearby. The ball landed incomplete as Jackson couldn’t find it in the sun, but it was a dangerous throw. In the third, Foles made an awkward throw to Jason Avant, stepping into it with his right foot. It ended up being a 23-yard completion, but just as easily could have been picked off.
* The first touchdown to Jackson was obviously flukey. Jackson had the corner beat, and the Packers had a single high safety, but Foles underthrew him. Chip Kelly said today that the wind played a factor on the pass. Read more »
On their first drive of the game, the Packers set up with a 1st-and-10 from the Eagles’ 31-yard-line.
They were in ’12′ personnel with two tight ends and Eddie Lacy in the backfield. The rookie running back had picked up 21 yards on his first four carries as Green Bay entered field goal range.
DeMeco Ryans lined up at his usual spot at middle linebacker about 4 yards behind nose tackle Damion Square. Seneca Wallace took the snap from under center, turned to his left and handed the ball off. As Lacy looked for a hole, Ryans flowed to his right.
Left tackle David Bakhtiari tried to get to him, but was unsuccessful. Ryans diagnosed the play, got downhill and planted his helmet into Lacy’s mid-section, knocking the 231-pound rookie backwards and onto the ground at Lambeau Field.
Lacy would manage just 54 yards on 19 carries (2.8 YPC) the rest of the day. And Ryans, with a game-high 13 tackles, was a big reason why. Read more »
GREEN BAY, Wisc. – Here’s what we saw during the first half of today’s Eagles-Packers game.
* It was a strange day for the Eagles’ offense. They got a little luck on their way to their first touchdown. Nick Foles eyed DeSean Jackson deep, but underthrew him. Two Packers defensive backs collided, and the ball popped into the air before Jackson came down with it for a 55-yard touchdown.
* Then in the third, Foles threw one up for grabs, and Riley Cooper did a great job of finding the ball for a 45-yard touchdown. It looked like the ball moved a little when Cooper hit the ground, but the score stood.
* Later in the third, Cooper got wide-open with a double move and scored from 32 yards out. Overall, Cooper had three catches for 102 yards. In the last five games, he has 462 yards and five touchdowns.
* Foles’ numbers looked good: 12-for-18 for 228 yards and three touchdowns. But as described above, he got a lot of help. In the first half especially, he looked a little hesitant.
Read more »
Here’s what the national media are saying about Nick Foles and the Eagles this week. Read more »
Every young quarterback has to go through the process of trying to win over the locker room.
In Pittsburgh back in 2004, starter Tommy Maddox went down with an elbow injury early in the season, forcing Ben Roethlisberger into action. Veteran lineman Alan Faneca was asked at the time if he was excited to see what the rookie could do.
“Exciting?” Faneca said. “No, it’s not exciting. Do you want to go work with some little young kid who’s just out of college?”
Roethlisberger went 13-0 as a starter that year and led the Steelers to an appearance in the AFC Championship Game. He was the 11th overall pick and wasn’t exactly replacing a legend, but there was resistance.
This is a brutally tough league and the window for every player is always threatening to slam shut. There is little patience for a project.
Nobody has given Nick Foles a stiff arm like Faneca did Roethlisberger. As the Michael Vick-Foles joint press conference illustrated, this is a pretty unique situation. Vick has put team in front of self-interest, and that has really set the tone. There is support for whoever is under center.
That’s not to say that Foles hasn’t been climbing uphill in some way. This preseason he was charged with not only winning the quarterback competition but also winning the hearts and minds of his teammates — some of whom once idolized Vick. Read more »
In the days leading up to Sunday’s game against the Raiders, Chip Kelly was asked what his message would be to Nick Foles to get him to rebound from the clunker against the Cowboys.
“Sometimes, as I told Nick, grip it and rip it, let’s go,” Kelly said. “He’s thrown a lot of really good passes since I’ve been around him, and he’s been really good with the football.
“The big thing for him is let’s just get him back in the flow. Let’s get in a rhythm. That’s the biggest thing. Can you get in a rhythm, can you get your feet set, can you throw the ball?”
Answers to those questions came against the Raiders: yes, yes and yes.
After losses to the Cowboys and Giants and a grand total of three points by the offense, Kelly emphasized that there would be no grand scheme changes. The concepts would stay the same, but the execution had to get better.
And it did. To the tune of 49 points in three quarters. So what worked? And why was there such a difference from the previous two weeks? Here’s what we saw from the tape. Read more »
Here’s a position-by-position review of what we saw from the Eagles’ offense this week.
* Not sure what else there is to say about Nick Foles. He was spectacular, completing 22 of 28 passes for 406 yards and seven touchdowns. Two things really stood out when I re-watched the offense. One, Foles was willing to take shots downfield. And two, he did an outstanding job of buying time with his feet to create space. On the Eagles’ opening drive, they faced a 3rd-and-13. Foles could have easily checked the ball down, but instead fired a pass to Jeff Maehl in traffic over the middle for a 19-yard gain. That had to be big for his confidence.
* Foles did a great job of looking defenders off all game long. In the first, he looked to LeSean McCoy in the flat, drew a defender and then hit Zach Ertz for a first down. The 17-yard TD to Riley Cooper down the left sideline was a beauty. Foles let go of the ball while Cooper was covered and let his receiver make a play. He later found Cooper for a 63-yard bomb. Read more »
When addressing the media after his team just dropped 49 points against the Oakland Raiders, Chip Kelly wanted to make one thing clear: The offensive explosion was not the result of some magical play-calling elixir he had concocted in the wee hours of the morning at the NovaCare Complex.
Rather, it was something a lot more simple.
“We called a lot of plays that we’ve called the last two weeks,” Kelly said. “We just executed ‘em. I think that’s the biggest thing.”
The masses are searching for answers on the day after the Eagles earned their fourth victory of the season.
How can an offense that scored three points in two weeks all-of-a-sudden look unstoppable?
How can a quarterback who was a complete disaster two weeks ago come back and play the best game of his life? Read more »
Reactions still vary from player-to-player when Riley Cooper is brought up.
Nick Foles, as an example. stood in the corridor following his press conference and sang the praises of the receiver during a phone interview with Peter King.
“I love Riley to death,” said Foles. “He had that [incident]. He has really grown as a person. I’ve always thought the world of him.”
Meanwhile, in the back corner of the Eagles’ locker room, Cary Williams struck a different tone.
“I mean he’s playing OK, I guess,” said Williams of Cooper, who had just put together a five-catch, 139-yard, three-touchdown performance against the Raiders. Williams followed with a compliment. ”Whenever we’ve needed him he’s come through…That’s one thing he’s been doing, he’s been working and when his name is called he’s been able to make plays whenever the ball is thrown to him.” Read more »
Editor’s Note: This feature will post every Friday. We’ll bring you nuggets from the locker room, scouting reports on the upcoming game, reader e-mail and more.
LeSean McCoy took heavy breaths in between sentences, his forehead glistening with sweat from extra conditioning work after practice.
On the surface, everything is good for the 25-year-old running back. At the halfway point of the season, he’s the NFL’s leading rusher (733 yards). He’s carrying the ball more than ever (19.5 times per game). And he’s averaging a healthy 4.7 yards per carry.
Yet McCoy is in the midst of a mental tug of war in his fifth NFL season. In the past four games, he’s averaging 3.4 yards per carry. The Eagles’ offense has scored just three points the last two weeks, failing to hit on explosive plays and finding difficulty in sustaining drives.
“Just more attention to really try and contain the backs, keep everything in front of them,” McCoy said when asked this week about opposing defenses. “The backers are way more into the line than usual. And everything just seems so cluttered, seems so packed. That’s probably the biggest difference I’ve noticed. Even on some of the fakes, if it’s a half-fake or an average fake, they’re all on it. So that’s probably the biggest difference I’ve noticed from just early in the season to the last couple weeks.”
Defenses game-plan for the Eagles and make No. 25 their first priority. With a shaky QB situation and one true dangerous threat in the passing game in DeSean Jackson, it’s really a no-brainer. But that has led to tough times for McCoy, who has been critical of himself after each of the last two games. Read more »