Half-Assessment Week 5: Eagles vs. Saints

Photo by Hunter Martin/Philadelphia Eagles

Photo by Hunter Martin/Philadelphia Eagles

 

Wow wow wow, a convincing win! It sure was a relief to see the Birds finally bash another team. It wasn’t the easiest bashing I’ve ever seen, but the Eagles still cruised to a 39-17 win over the New Orleans Saints.

Offense

Sam Bradford had another rough start, at least in the red zone. Bradford threw two picks with the Eagles in range of the opposing end zone, driving the football loving population of Philadelphia to the brink of madness (moreso than usual I guess). Thankfully, Sam settled down and finished the day 32-45 for 333 yards, 2 touchdowns and the previously mentioned interceptions. I still have no damn clue what to make of this guy. There are times when he seems completely inept. There are times when he gets that fire in his belly and looks like nothing can stop him.

DeMarco Murray finally had a really game as an Eagle! He rushed 20 times for 83 yards and a touchdown, as well as catching 7 balls for 37 yards. Even better, Murray getting fed didn’t take away from Ryan Mathews, who rushed 8 times for 73 yards and a touchdown. This is the balance that we’ve been looking for with the ground game.

There was balance in the receiving corps as well. Bradford spread the ball around to 9 different targets. Josh Huff had the highlight of the day, catching a 41 yard touchdown pass from Sam Bradford and flipping into the end zone.

There were high expectations for Huff coming into his second season, and hopefully this is the start of bigger and better things for him. Yeah, the flip was a little excessive. It ruled, shut up already. This team needs a dose of fun. It was also nice to see Bradford get the tight ends involved, with Zach Ertz going 5-60-0 and Brent Celek going 3-44-1.

Hey, Caleb Sturgis had a pretty good game! The big dumb dumb missed another extra point, but he went 4 for 4 on field goals. I’ll take him making the 3 pointers, I guess.

Sure, the Saints defense isn’t very good, but this is what the Eagles needed to do against a team like this.

Defense

It was a great game for the defense as well, as they held Drew Brees and the Saints down for most of the game. The D produced 5 sacks, most of them coming from Fletcher Cox. What a monster game for Cox! He took Brees down 3 times, forcing 2 fumbles and recovering 1. Bryan Braman and Bennie Logan also sacked Brees on Sunday. Am I the only one who hears the name Bennie Logan and thinks of Arnold Schwarzenegger screaming, “BENNNYYYY!” in Total Recall?

How about another interception for Walter Thurmond? That makes 3 on the year, which is a pretty darn good start. Don’t let that garbage time touchdown at the end of the game fool you, the Birds’ defense took it to the Saints on Sunday, in their best performance of the season.

Next Week

Ohhhhh boy, it’s Giants week! The Giants were so close to being tied with the rest of the NFC East at 2-3, but then they pulled a last minute win out of their collective butts over the 49ers.

It’s a tough matchup for the Iggles on the defensive side of the ball. Eli Manning might be the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of the NFL, alternating horrendous and solid seasons. This is a Dr. Jekyll year for Eli, as he’s ranked in the top five in passing yards and touchdowns. The Giants’ biggest weapon is Odell Beckham Jr., who is just ridiculous as far as wide receivers go. ODB is experiencing some hamstring issues, but I wouldn’t count on it keeping him out for a big Monday night divisional showdown.

The Giants are weak on defense, ranking near the bottom of the NFL. They’re especially vulnerable in their secondary, allowing 304.2 passing yards per game. It’s a tough game for the Birds, as their matchups with the Giants usually are. It’s also a must-win. The Eagles badly need a W in the weak NFC East. My prediction? I think the Eagles take it to the Giants on a national stage and finally pull out a divisional win.

Week 6 Beer Recommendation

I will embrace the pumpkin side this week and recommend Two Roads Brewing Company’s Roadsmary’s Baby. It isn’t overwhelming and not all in your face Poochy style with its pumpkin flavor. 6.8% in the alcohol department is enough to have a good time without needing your buddy to haul you home in a wheelbarrow.

 

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