It was a tale of two halves in Monday night’s game against the Washington Redskins. The first half could only be describe as utter dominance. The Eagles offense was firing on all cylinders, dominating the stat sheet and the score board. They were scoring at will. The defense was swarming to the ball, making stops and creating turnovers. RG3 couldn’t find any rhythm. Their run game could never get established. Besides a bogus call on a backwards pass that led to a Redskins TD, it was a shutout for the Birds.
The second half was a different story. The ‘Skins made some adjustments that made it more difficult for the Eagles to run the ball. RG3 and his offense started to find their groove and move the ball. Most people seem to be crediting this to half time adjustments by Washington, but I attribute it more to the Eagles taking their foot off the gas and allowing some sloppy plays.
But if you analyze the scores by the Redskins, you’ll realize that it was Philadelphia mistakes that kept RG3 and co. in the game.
As stated earlier, the first time Washington got on the scoreboard was questionable backwards pass call that led to their defensive touchdown. The play happened when the Eagles were in the redzone and should have led to a touchdown, or a field goal at minimum. It was a lazy play on both Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy. Both need to know that in this offense, most of the screens and dumps are going to be backwards passes, and that they should expect the ball to be live at all times.
The second Washington touchdown was a product of a good drive and their offense moving the ball well. RG3 looked more like his old self on this drive, and it looked as though he had knocked some of the rust off.
The third ‘Skins TD was all on the Eagles. Vick hit Jason Avant with a short pass, and when Avant attempted to hurdle a player to extend for the first down the ball came loose and was recovered by the Redskins. This gave Washington excellent field position which they capitalized on for the score.
The final touchdown should have been an Eagles interception. Patrick Chung terribly misjudged a deep pass to the back of the endzone. He was in perfect position to intercept the ball but let the defender get behind him and jumped way too late. This was a gift from RG3. The Eagles could have essentially sealed the victory with a first down or two after this.
This game was a thriller from beginning to end, but with a few less errors it could have been very lopsided for Philly. I have no doubt that these mistakes are going to irk Chip Kelly and he will work hard to correct them. When the Eagles get more familiar with the system and become a finely tuned machine, it could be dangerous. Look out.
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