Philadelphia Eagles: How big was Jake Elliott’s miss against the Chiefs?

KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 17: Tight end Travis Kelce
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 17: Tight end Travis Kelce /

Eagles kicker Jake Elliott may have cost himself the kicking job already.

Newly-signed Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliott is a product of the Memphis Tigers‘ football program. His collegiate career saw him connect on 81 of 104 attempts, good for 78 percent. He was also perfect on his extra-point attempts, going 202 for 202 during his four years with the program.

That’s where the good news ends with Mr. Elliott. The Cincinnati Bengals felt positive enough about him to draft him with the 153rd-overall selection. On September 2nd of 2017, following a below-average preseason, he was waived in favor of veteran Randy Bullock.

An injury to Caleb Sturgis led him to a second chance with the Eagles.

A chance to make a name for himself:

In week two, during the Eagles’ second game of the season, Philadelphia trailed the Kansas City Chiefs with less than a minute to go in the first half by a score of 6-3. Then it happened.

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In one of the weirdest plays you’ll ever see, Philly ignored conventional wisdom and the theory that they should “play it safe” by kneeling and threw a bomb to tight end Zach Ertz. It was deflected and almost intercepted, but it found its’ way into Ertz hands.

The Eagles were now in position to tie the game with a last-second field goal. After a time out by former Eagles and current Chiefs head coach Andy Reid, Elliott’s kick went awry, and a golden opportunity was missed.

Looking back, it kind of makes you ask how big was that miss exactly? Is there a greater significance than it just being a missed field goal?

Finding momentum:

First, we need to understand that the miss didn’t cost the Eagles the game. They had an entire half left to play. Still, making that field goal would have sent the Eagles into the locker room with some much needed momentum on the road.

They had a nice drive at the beginning of the second half. They, at one point even had the lead in the game, but it was still obvious to see that they weren’t the same team. They just seemed to deteriorate as the game went on.

As far as Elliott goes, despite making his other two field goal attempts, it’s the first half miss that will plague him after week two. The miss was the first by any Eagles kicker from 30 yards or less since 2012. It comes following a preseason where we all saw him struggle. It comes when a man who had little margin for error made a huge error.

It probably means Caleb Sturgis job is secure when he returns from injury. That could change, but for now, it doesn’t seem as though it will.