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Eagles-Redskins: Numbers that matter

A by-the-numbers look at Eagles-Redskins, including Nick Foles' third-down numbers, the Eagles' red-zone defense and improved run defense and Zach Ertz's impressive red-zone production.

Eagles quarterback Nick Foles throws the football with offensive lineme Brandon Brooks, Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Stefen Wisniewski against Houston Texans outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney and Houston Texans defensive end Carlos Watkins on Sunday, December 23, 2018 in Philadelphia.  YONG KIM / Staff Photographer
Eagles quarterback Nick Foles throws the football with offensive lineme Brandon Brooks, Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Stefen Wisniewski against Houston Texans outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney and Houston Texans defensive end Carlos Watkins on Sunday, December 23, 2018 in Philadelphia. YONG KIM / Staff PhotographerRead moreYONG KIM / Staff Photographer

A statistical look at today’s Eagles-Redskins game:

The last time. . .

--The Eagles won the third-down battle in their Week 13 win over the Redskins. The Redskins converted just two of 10 third-down opportunities in the Eagles’ 28-13 win. The Eagles converted seven of 13 third downs. Carson Wentz was 6-for-9 for 76 yards on third down against the Redskins. The ‘Skins’ two quarterbacks in that game – Colt McCoy and Mark Sanchez – completed six of eight passes on third down, but for only 37 yards. Just one of those eight attempts produced a first down.

--In the first meeting, the Eagles used 11 personnel (1RB, 1TE, 3WR) on 48 of 72 plays (66.7 percent). Eighty-four of their 130 rushing yards were with 11 personnel. They averaged 4.2 yards per carry with 11. Carson Wentz completed 19 of 28 passes for 212 yards, two touchdowns and one interception with 11 personnel. He was 7-for-10 for 73 yards with 12 personnel, and 1-for-1 for 20 yards with 13 personnel.

--Zach Ertz was targeted 10 times in the first game against the Redskins and had nine catches for 83 yards. Six of his nine catches produced first downs. He had six catches for 52 yards with 11 personnel, two for 11 yards with 12 personnel and one for 20 yards with 13 personnel.

--The Redskins had 104 rushing yards on 14 attempts in Week 13. But 90 of those yards came on Adrian Peterson’s second-quarter touchdown run. Ten of the Redskins’ other 13 runs gained three yards or less, including six runs for zero or negative yards.

The pass defense

--The Eagles have allowed 11.2 yards per completion this season. That’s up from 10.7 last year. Wide receivers have averaged 12.7 yards per catch against the Eagles, up from 12.4 last year. Tight ends have averaged 10.9, up from 10.2. And running backs have averaged 7.9, up from 7.2.

--The Eagles have intercepted just nine passes this season, only two on third down. That’s a significant drop from last year, when they picked off 19, including nine on third down.

--The Eagles have blitzed significantly less this season (15.8 percent of pass plays) than last (21.7). That’s especially been true lately. In their last five games, the Eagles have blitzed on just 22 of 221 pass plays (9.9 percent).

--The blitz hasn’t been very effective this season for the Eagles. Opponents have a 106.4 passer rating when the Eagles have sent extra rushers, including a 64.1 completion percentage and a 9.2 yards-per-attempt average. Last year, opponents had a 69.3 passer rating when the Eagles blitzed, including a 50 percent completion percentage and a 5.8 yards-per-attempt average.

--Just nine of the Eagles’ 40 sacks have come on blitzes, including two in the last seven games.

--The Eagles have 14 sacks in the last five games. Eight of them have come on third down. In their first 10 games, just six of their 26 sacks were on third down.

--Opponents have a 94.6 passer rating against the Eagles on third down. That’s much higher than last year (65.7). This year, 36.8 percent of opponents’ third down pass attempts have produced first downs. Last year: just 30.7.

Shotgun v. under center

--Seven hundred fifty-seven of the Eagles’ 966 plays, or 78.4 percent, have been run out of shotgun this season. That’s up from 69.7 percent last season.

--The Eagles are averaging 4.2 yards per carry out of shotgun and 3.6 from under center. Last year, they averaged 5.1 out of shotgun and 3.7 from under center.

--The Eagles have used shotgun considerably more with Nick Foles than they did with Carson Wentz. In Foles’ four starts this season, 83.1 percent of the Eagles’ plays have been run out of shotgun, including 85.1 percent in the last two games. In Wentz’s 11 starts, just 76.4 percent of the plays were run out of shotgun.

--Foles has been sacked three times in 20 pass plays from under center. He’s been sacked the same amount of times in 150 pass plays in shotgun.

The red zone story

--The Eagles are third in the league in red-zone defense. Opponents have a 44.6 touchdown percentage in the red zone against the Eagles. That’s the good news. The bad news is opponents have been in the red zone 56 times. That’s the fifth most red-zone opportunities in the league, behind only Oakland (59), Cincinnati (58), Kansas City (58) and Miami (57).

--Opponents have a 40.6 completion percentage against the Eagles in the red zone. The Eagles have five sacks in the red zone. Last year, opposing quarterbacks completed 50 percent of their pass attempts in the red zone. The Eagles had just three red-zone sacks last year.

--After finishing first in red-zone offense last season (65.5 touchdown percentage), the Eagles are 18th heading into Sunday’s game against the Redskins (57.4). In their last four games, four of which they’ve won, the Eagles have converted 12 of 19 red-zone opportunities (63.2 percent) into touchdowns.

--Nick Foles has completed 10 of 19 passes in the red zone with two touchdowns and one interception in his four starts. Carson Wentz had a 60.7 red-zone completion percentage in his 11 starts, with 18 red-zone touchdown passes and one interception. Wentz was sacked four times in the red zone. Foles has yet to be sacked inside the 20.

----Zach Ertz recorded his seventh red-zone touchdown catch last week against Houston. He’s tied for fifth in the league in red-zone TD catches, behind the Packers’ Davante Adams (12), the Chiefs’ Travis Kelce and the Colts’ Eric Ebron (9) and the Texans’ DeAndre Hopkins (8).

--Ertz has 15 red-zone TDs the last two years. He had eight in his first four seasons with the Eagles.

--A breakdown of the Eagles’ 20 red-zone TD catches this season: Ertz 7, Alshon Jeffery 4, Dallas Goedert 3, Nelson Agholor 2 and Wendell Smallwood, Golden Tate, Jordan Matthews and Darren Sproles each with one.

Nick Report

--Foles completed 12 of 13 passes for 149 yards and a touchdown on third down last week against Houston. Seven of his 13 attempts produced first downs. He has an 80.5 completion percentage on third down in his four starts this season.

--Foles has attempted 16 passes that have traveled 20 or more yards from the line of scrimmage in his four starts this season. He’s completed six of them. A percentage breakdown of his attempts by throwing distance: 20-plus yards – 10.1%; 10-19 yards – 15.2%; 0-10 yards – 56.3%; behind line of scrimmage – 18.3%. A breakdown of Carson Wentz’s attempts by distance: 20-plus yards – 11.8%; 10-19 yards – 21.5%; 0-10 yards – 49.6%; behind LOS – 17.1%.

--Foles was sacked just once in 82 pass plays in his starts against the Rams and Texans the last two weeks. In his Week 2 starts against the Falcons and Bucs he was sacked five times in 88 pass plays.

--Foles got the ball out quicker in his last two starts than he did in his first two. He averaged just 2.27 seconds from snap to release against Houston and the Rams, according to Pro Football Focus. In his Week 1-2 starts against the Falcons and the Bucs, he averaged 2.76 seconds.

--Foles has a 114.8 passer rating with 12 personnel (1RB, 2TE, 2WR) in the last two games. He’s completed 82.9 percent of his attempts with 12 personnel against the Rams and Texans. He has a 112.3 passer rating with 11 personnel in those games, including a 10.9 yards-per-attempt average.

Run defense

--The Eagles held Houston’s running backs to 13 yards on 11 carries last week.

--In the last 10 games, the Eagles have allowed a league-worst 5.94 yards per carry on first down. But they held the Texans to 33 yards on 13 carries on first down last week.

--In Josh Johnson’s two starts, the Redskins have run the ball on 67 of 120 plays (55.8 percent), In their first 13 games, they ran the ball on 335 of 803 plays (41.7 percent).

--The Redskins have run the ball on 38 of 49 first-down plays in the last two games.

This and that

--The Eagles have scored 53 points in the fourth quarter in their last five games. That’s just one less than they scored in the fourth quarter in their first 10 games.

--Josh Adams has averaged just 1.9 yards per carry in the Eagles’ last two games. In the previous six games, he had averaged 5.1.

--Alshon Jeffery has averaged 22.0 yards per catch the last two games with Nick Foles at quarterback. He averaged 11.1 in Carson Wentz’s 11 starts.

--The Eagles’ average drive start in the last five games has been the 32.2 yard-line. In the first 10 games, it was the 26.5.