Half-Assessment Week 14: Eagles vs. Bills

Image via Philadelphia Eagles

Image via Philadelphia Eagles

 

Shady came back and did not completely stomp all over the Eagles like a revenge-filled hornet who loves booze buses and parties with ladies and just ladies. Is that a thing? Well, the Eagles beat the Bills by the score of 23-20.

Offense

Up until he took a dumb sack with a little over two minutes to go in the game, Sam Bradford was having a pretty nice day. Sleeves went 23/38 for 247 yards, 1 TD and 1 very questionable interception. The officiating crew was brutal on Sunday. It felt like they needed a committee just to decide if someone was offsides. We can scratch that old INT off the old chalkboard of responsibility (also not a thing) along with a few more dropped passes from the receiving corps. Sam has improved to an area just above the “game manager” classification. He hasn’t been throwing catastrophic picks these past few game. Maybe Sammy is okay! I can deal with okay!

On the bright side of the receivers, Nelson Agholor scored his first NFL touchdown! Yay Nelson. Zach Ertz had a terrific game with 5 catches for 98 yards. It wasn’t such a good day for Jordan Matthews, who only managed 3 catches for 19 yards. It’s almost like this young group could have used a vet who knew the offense to balance them out. HMMMMM. Oh dammit, I went to the “shoulda kept” well. I will be sure to give myself 10 lashes and go without dessert tonight. Sorry.

Ryan Mathews was back for the run game, but didn’t quite set the world on fire, only gathering 38 yards on 13 attempts. It was another effective game for Darren Sproles after taking it to the New England Patriots last week. Little Man ran it 7 times for 41 yards and a touchdown. DeMarco Murray continues to do little as he only rushed for 34 yards on 11 attempts. What a signing!

Defense

These guys kept LeSean McCoy under 100 yards on the ground, so I’m pretty darn happy. Shady did manage to gain over 100 between the ground and air, but he didn’t utterly destroy the Eagles and ended his day throwing his helmet in frustration right in front of CBS cameras. All in all, it went pretty, pretty, pretty well.

A huge part of that containment was Fletcher Cox, who had 8 tackles and a sack. He seemed to be giving a little extra on each hit throughout the day. And damn, how about that one tackle? You know the one. Where he stomped right over the Eagles’ all-time leading rusher? What a beaut.

It wasn’t all roses for the Eagles’ D. Shady’s stats were still pretty good. Tyrod Taylor had a decent day, going 19/36 for 268 yards, 1 TD and 1 interception along with rushing 8 times for 53 yards. Robert Woods gathered 5 catches for 106 yards and Sammy Watkins had 5 catches for 81 yards and 1 touchdown. It was a pretty in-between day for the Eagles defensively. Ultimately, they did just enough to get the win.

Next Week

It’s another tough one for the Eagles as they take on the 11-2 Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals may have lost leading rusher Chris Johnson, but they still have Carson Palmer, who is having a hell of a year. Palmer has thrown for 4,003 yards, 31 TDs and 9 interceptions on the season. Palmer’s late career resurgence with the Cardinals sure has been something to watch. Also having a late career resurgence? Larry Fitzgerald, who has flat out whooped the Eagles over the years, catching 38 passes for 650 yards and 8 touchdowns in 8 career regular season games. Eagle killer? You betcha. This year he was 96 catches for 128 yards and 7 TDs. Pass the Pepto.

Oh yeah, this one got flexed to Sunday night too. Terrific. It’s not a great matchup for the Eagles. The Patriots weren’t either, and they pulled that one out. This team is completely unpredictable. However, the Cardinals have a very good defense to go along with those offensive weapons. Forget “not great”, this is a bad matchup for the Eagles without the usual Sunday night TV options to rescue you. Hey, it’s all divisional matchups after that, and the NFC East is a dumpster fire of ineptitude. We’ve got that going for us.

 

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