Eagles notes: DeVonta Smith dominates, D-line explodes, and more

A phenomenal defensive line performance and another great game by Jalen Hurts led the Eagles to a 24-8 victory over the Washington on Sunday at FedEx Field.

Nine sacks to defend, three touchdown passes for Galen Hurts, two and a half bags for Brandon Graham, 169 yards for DeVonta Smith and a massive win on the road in a short week over Carson Wentz.

The Eagles still need to figure out how to really finish teams. But 3-0 is a good place. The Eagles are one of four remaining unbeaten teams and that number could drop by one or two by Monday night.

What a fun team the Nassour 2022 is.

1. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen the Eagles defensive line simply take on a football match like this. That’s what Reggie, Clyde and Jerome used to do for teams. take away their heart. crush their souls. They broke their will. They gave up on their hope. Carson Wentz’s 17 passes in the first half on Sunday resulted in three short passes, seven incompletes, six sacks, one trip and a 16-yard minus net. soccer. Jonathan Gannon’s unit finished with nine sacks — tied for fourth in franchise history — making a defensive shutdown until the last few minutes and keeping Washington 240 yards out — mostly in trash time. This is the first time since the Super Bowl season that the Eagles have held back-to-back singles teams and only the fourth time since 2009. This was old-school Eagles defensive football. The front four generated insane pressure, the back end defended the few times Wentz got the ball out, and Washington had no answer. The biggest question about this defense two weeks later was its ability to generate pressure, and they answered that quickly. Wentz, working behind a poorly injured attacking line, had no chance, and the Eagles didn’t hold back from their former teammate. He kept taking those seven steps and someone – Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox, Josh Sweet, Hasson Riddick, Javon Hargrave – was in his face at every moment.

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2. Let’s talk about Galen Hurts. He’s now undoubtedly one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, and it’s amazing to watch. The growth he shows is amazing. its accuracy. made his decision. The speed at which it passes during its progression. These are back-to-back masterpieces by 24-year-old Hurts, and he deserves plenty of credit for putting in the work of going from the player we saw as a rookie to the player we see today. He is 24 years old, has started 22 games in his life, and is absolutely crushing it. Performing another 330-yard pass, three TD passes, and no spin. He is in complete control of crime, and he silences many skeptics and haters on a weekly basis.

3. Nick Siriani has a good sense of what his team needs in terms of practice, and he really fell back on them last week. They had a towel-less walkthrough on Wednesday, a dozen beginners sat in a Thursday workout and Friday’s workouts lasted about 70 minutes. This is the work week. Tons of movies, tons of meetings, tons of studying, but get the guys off their feet and get them as fresh as possible for a road match in a short week. You certainly succeeded. The Eagles dominated both sides of the ball from the start and they barely looked like a team away from home coming out of Monday night’s game. There are plenty of reasons players would love to play Sirianni, and his willingness to make sure they’re physically okay instead of being crushed is a big deal.

4. We talked a lot during training camp about how much having AJ Brown helped DeVonta Smith help, and we definitely saw that on Sunday. If teams wanted to spread their coverage of Brown – and you can’t blame them – Smith would either be open or have a useful rivalry, and the talented kid is so terrifying that he’d play if given the chance. This was a fine performance by Smith, who finished with eight grabs for 169 yards and a touchdown. Smith has such a flair for getting high and going down with the circus catching in traffic, and so fast that he always threatens to take big yards after the hunt, which we also saw on Sunday. The Eagles have had a lot of elite receptionists over the years. They now have two and a midfielder who knows how to get the ball. I don’t know how these guys stopped.

5. Some props should be given to Avonte Maddox for that fourth-place play and a goal early in the fourth quarter. Wentz completed a short pass into tight end Logan Thomas, but Maddox mustered him in front of the goal line for another stop in the red. Thomas is 6-6, 250. Maddox is 5-9, 185. Maddox is one of the best baccarat corners in the league, and his ability to play physically as he does at this size is incredible.

6. How about Fletcher Cox turning back the clock? Cox had a half sack in Detroit, a full sack against the Vikings and 1 sack in Washington, and 3.0 sacks during week three matching the best start to his career. He had 3.0 three games in the 2016 and 2018 seasons as well. More important than bag numbers is the way Cox plays. He has juice he hasn’t had the last two years. Heck, he’s already only got half a sack out of his 2021 season total. He’s had 13 ½ rovers in 47 games over the past three years, but we’re seeing Fletcher Cox right now who’s really causing some havoc in the trenches.

7. You must love the number of deep shots the vultures take. He had five Sundays – 45, 44 and 31 yards to Smith, 40 yards to Grant Calcaterra (on his first NFL goal) and 38 yards to Brown. Hurts had 12 completions for 30 yards or more in 15 games last year. Hurts just got more accurate in deep throws. He’s a killer now. Four different Eagles receivers have already earned a pass for at least 40 yards, and this is only week three. This offense has so many ways to keep pressure on the defense, and if they hit choppy, it’s hard to stop. .

8. How bout bg? What a performance. The 34-year-old, in his thirteenth season, knocked out his Achilles tendon, and tied the second best game of his career with 2 sacks. Brandon Graham had 3.0 sacks in a game against the Jets in 2019 and 2 ½ against the Bengals again in 2012, and was unmissable on Sunday. Added five quarterbacks sprinting, tackle for loss, knockout pass, and mandatory fumble. BG – at 34 years and 175 days old – is the second oldest player in franchise history with 2 sacks in the game. William Fuller was 34 years, 289 days old, when he had 3.0 sacks against Kent Graham and cards in 1996. Are you kidding me? He still has BG.

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9. Winning training takes many different forms, and that showed up late in the first quarter after Galen Hurts completed a 45-yard run in front of DeVonta Smith down the right sideline. The responses clearly showed that Smith did not put his left foot in bounds, and the Eagles knew this. But captains coach Ron Rivera was a bit slow to throw the challenge flag, and Siriani knew the only chance the Eagles had in play was to call up a play ASAP. It doesn’t even matter if you succeed. Just turn on a play. So they went without dribbling and dashing to the line, picking up the ball the moment everyone was set, and blasting into play before Rivera could throw the challenge flag. The Eagles got two yards of play – a pass to Dallas Guedert – and ended up scoring a field goal on the road. All because they staged a play before Washington could throw the defiance flag. Being ready for this situation and doing the acceleration, playing clean without penalty and getting 45 yards from an incomplete pass was phenomenal.

10. One area of ​​concern in Week 4 is the Eagles’ inability to maintain attack intensity late in the games. They led the Lions 38-21 after three quarters and held on after edging out 14-0 in the fourth quarter. They led the Vikings 24-7 in the first half before the second goalless half. On Sunday, they scored 24 points in the first half before the offending attack stopped. The Eagles won 29-14 in the second half of this year. They win, which is cool, but they have to find ways to finish.

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