Carson Wentz outplayed by Jared Goff, turnovers doom Eagles again, other quick takes in 37-19 loss | Marcus Hayes
The shoddy Eagles fell to 0-2 behind Carson Wentz's second straight week of poor decision-making.
Jared Goff went first overall in the 2016 draft. Wentz went second. They played like it Sunday in the Eagles' 37-19 loss.
Goff completed his first (13) passes before he finally had to throw one away under mild, eventual pressure from Fletcher Cox. He finished 20-for-27 for 267 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions.
» READ MORE: Carson Wentz, porous Eagles defense doom home opener in a 37-19 loss to the Rams
After playing the worst 32 minutes of his 5-year career in Week 1, in which he almost single-handedly lost the game at Washington, Wentz replicated that performance in Week 2.
Wentz started 18-for-24 for 167 yards, no fumbles, no interceptions in the first 40 minutes, after which the Eagles trailed, 21-16. He then went 8-for-19 for 75 yards and finished 26-for-43 with two interceptions. Don’t blame the pressure this week. He went down eight times in Week 1, but he was not sacked in Week 2. He was seldom pressured, and he was rarely hit. He threw high and late and short and, generally, badly.
Midway through the third quarter Wentz threw an end-zone interception into double coverage after staring down J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, his worst receiver, a late and inaccurate throw, midway through the third quarter. That cost the Eagles at least a field goal, since the Eagles had the ball at the Rams' 21. The Rams eventually kicked a field goal.
Wentz did, however, throw the ball away three times in the second half, a degree of discretion that would have won the Eagles the game a week before. It was not enough in Week 2.
Possession: nine-tenths of the ... game
The Rams scored their first touchdown after Miles Sanders fumbled on his third touch of the season, which also was the third play of the game. Combined with Wentz’s early interception, his late pick, and Wentz’s three turnovers last week, Eagles opponents have scored 24 points off the Eagles' six turnovers this season.
The better coach is ...
In their first two meetings, Philadelphia coach Doug Pederson beat 2017 Coach of the Year Sean McVay, one of the NFL’s brightest stars, in Los Angeles in 2017 and 2018. Pederson, an offensive coach, won his trip to the Super Bowl after the 2017 season, beating the Patriots and defensive genius Bill Belichick. McVay, an offensive coach, lost his trip to the Super Bowl after the 2018 season to the Patriots and defensive genius Bill Belichick. McVay looked a lot sharper than Pederson in Round Three. That might have had something to do with Pederson’s defensive coordinator.
» READ MORE: This Eagles season is looking like a major letdown after loss to the Rams | Mike Sielski
Overrated defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz once again was undressed by Sean McVay. In their three meetings, McVay’s Rams now are averaging 31.6 points against Schwartz’s Eagles defense.
After missing Game One with a lingering hamstring injury, second-year running back Miles Sanders ran 20 times for 95 yards and a touchdown and caught three passes for 36 more yards.
The Donald vs. The Line
Defensive tackle Aaron Donald has been the best player in the NFL for three seasons, and he is the best defensive lineman since Reggie White, but he didn’t play like it Sunday. The Eagles' offensive line had these issues: tackles Jason Peters (knee, 38 years old) and Lane Johnson (ankle) both appeared on the injury report this week; right guard Nate Herbig, undrafted in 2019, made his second NFL start; and center Jason Kelce had one of the worst games of his career against Washington. The Eagles then lost left guard Isaac Seumalu with 6:29 to play in the second quarter and was replaced by Matt Pryor, who’d failed to win the left tackle, right tackle, and left guard spots. Donald finished with one assisted tackle.
Hurts: so, good?
Controversial second-round pick Jalen Hurts, a quarterback, was active as the backup Sunday instead of veteran Nate Sudfeld. Hurts entered the game twice in the second quarter, lined up as a running back, and served as a receiver decoy on a 10-yard completion over the middle to tight end Dallas Goedert, then later as a runner decoy on a 6-yard run by Sanders.
Pro Bowl right tackle Lane Johnson (ankle), Sanders (hamstring), free-agent defensive tackle Javon Hargrave (pectoral) and defensive end Derek Barnett (ankle) returned Sunday. Johnson played well, and Sanders was the best player on the field, but the defensive linemen were invisible.
In his season debut defensive end Derek Barnett, who was second in penalties among defensive ends last season, lined up offside to help extend the Rams' third touchdown drive. ... Eagles rookie wideout Jalen Reagor absorbed a violent hit to his midsection with 11:45 to play in the second quarter and left the game. He returned two plays later. He later absorbed a helmet-to-helmet hit but kept on truckin'.