11:26 PM - January 3, 2021
11:26 PM - January 3, 2021

All she wrote

The Eagles season came to a merciful end Sunday night in embarrassing fashion. With draft position being the only thing at stake, the Birds opted to rely heavily on unproven young players and that reliance only worsened as their 20-14 loss to the Washington Football Team wore on. Jalen Hurts was eventually benched in favor of third-string quarterback Nate Sudfeld, who struggled to generate much offensive production and turned the ball over twice. The defense played Rudy Ford, a safety, at cornerback all game and decisions to go for it on fourth-down oftentimes didn’t line up with either conventional wisdom or analytical recommendations. The Eagles will finish this season 4-11-1 and will pick sixth in the NFL draft, putting an end to a year that will likely be remembered as the season everything fell apart for Carson Wentz. It’s expected to be Jim Schwartz’s last game as the team’s defensive coordinator, and more coaching changes should follow. It might also have been the last game in Eagles’ green for players like Zach Ertz, Jason Kelce, and Brandon Graham.

11:13 PM - January 3, 2021
11:13 PM - January 3, 2021

Giants players unhappy with Pederson’s decision

The Giants were big Eagles fans tonight, and several of their players didn’t like Doug Pederson’s decision to put in his backup quarterback in a one-possession game. The decision looked even worse when Nate Sudefeld had two drives end with turnovers.

10:54 PM - January 3, 2021
10:54 PM - January 3, 2021

T.J. Edwards gets payback

Just before halftime, Logan Thomas snagged a touchdown pass right over T.J. Edwards. This time, Edwards got the better of Thomas. Edwards undercut Thomas’ route as the tight end slipped. It was his first career interception.

10:43 AM - January 3, 2021
10:43 AM - January 3, 2021

Sudfeld time

The Eagles pulled Jalen Hurts in favor of Nate Sudfeld with 12:35 left in the fourth quarter, the latest measure to make sure the team secures the best draft pick possible. Assuming Hurts’ night is done, it was an up-and-down end to his four-game stretch as the starter. He went 7-for-20 and had a 25.4 pass rating, but scored twice as a runner and kept the Eagles competitive with an offense filled with practice-squad players at key positions.

10:35 PM - January 3, 2021
10:35 PM - January 3, 2021

Marcus Epps interceptions leads to no points

You can’t blame Doug Pederson. The Eagles have nothing to lose but draft position. Marcus Epps somehow made an interception where he tackled and caught the ball at the same time. Epps’ interception set the Eagles up 15 yards from the end zone. Jalen Hurts threw three straight incomplete passes from the four-yard that resulted in a turnover on downs. For all the good Hurts has done on the ground, he has equally struggled as much through the air. He is 7-for-20 with 72 yards passing through three quarters.

9:45 PM - January 3, 2021
9:45 PM - January 3, 2021

Washington regains lead

Both teams traded blows in the first half, but Washington delivered the final punch. The Eagles aren’t the only ones with a former collegiate quarterback making big catches. Washington tight end Logan Thomas hauled in a 13-yard touchdown pass from Alex Smith over blanket coverage from T.J. Edwards. Thomas needed every inch of his six-foot-six frame.

9:31 PM - January 3, 2021
9:31 PM - January 3, 2021

No answer for Hurts

Washington’s defensive line has no answer for Hurts early. Despite their ability to get into the backfield, Hurts seems to slither away and find rushing lanes. The latest example was his second rushing touchdown. The six-yard score gave the Eagles a lead after an ugly start. Hurts is leading the Eagles in rushing with six carries for 27 yards. He also had a 30-yard completion to J.J. Arecega-Whiteside.

9:10 PM - January 3, 2021
9:10 PM - January 3, 2021

Eagles answer with scoring drive

The NBC broadcast team said that they asked Jalen Hurts was he worried about Washington’s defensive line, and he responded by saying they should be worried about him. So far, that’s proven to be true. Washington has gotten pressure, but the elusive Hurts isn’t easy to tackle. He outran defensive lineman Montez Sweat and juked another defender on his six-yard touchdown run. The Eagles’ drive lasted 10 plays and totaled 75 yards.

8:50 PM - January 3, 2021
8:50 PM - January 3, 2021

New year, new Rudy

Maybe Rudy Ford’s New Year’s resolution was to play a different position. The Eagles’ safety got the start at outside cornerback because of injuries to virtually every corner on the roster outside of Darius Slay. Ford, typically a special teams ace, played just seven defensive snaps all season before tonight.

8:43 PM - January 3, 2021
8:43 PM - January 3, 2021

Washington gets first touchdown

The Eagles drove the ball near midfield on their opening drive. Doug Pederson opted to punt on a 4th-and-two, which was mildly surprising considering the Birds have nothing to lose. The Washington Football Team played much more aggressive on its opening drive. Alex Smith found Washington’s No. 1 wide receiver Terry McLaurin on a 5-yard touchdown pass. The drive lasted 15 plays and went 91 yards. Washington converted four third downs. Missing Derek Barnett and Fletcher Cox will likely show up on third downs. Washington has one of the NFL’s best offensive lines, and the Eagles struggled to get pressure without two of its best weapons.

8:36 PM - January 3, 2021
8:36 PM - January 3, 2021

Tanks for the punt

Doug Pederson decided to punt on 4th-and-2 near midfield on the Eagles’ first drive. In normal circumstances, it’d be a questionable decision. Team’s win probabilities typically increase when coaches decide to go for it on 4th-and-short near midfield, but in a meaningless game, maybe the win probability isn’t the primary focus.

8:00 PM - January 3, 2021
8:00 PM - January 3, 2021

Welcome to the blog

Good evening, Eagles fans. Welcome to the 16th and final iteration of the Eagles’ game-day live blog. Greetings from a wet and cold night at Lincoln Financial Field, where the Birds are preparing for the season finale against the Washington Football Team. Washington will clinch the NFC East with a win, while the Eagles would clinch a top-six draft pick with a loss.

The Eagles aren’t outright tanking this game, but they’re not exactly putting their best foot forward, either. Several starters, including Fletcher Cox, Miles Sanders, Jordan Mailata, and Dallas Goedert were held out of practice with injuries and will not play. Don’t be surprised if it looks more like a preseason lineup tonight as the team gets a look at younger players for next year. Even Jalen Hurts might get an early hook depending on how things are going.

If the Eagles do in fact play spoiler, the Giants would win the NFC East after beating the Dallas Cowboys, 23-19, earlier today to finish the season 6-10. That’s the NFC East, for you.

8:00 PM - January 3, 2021
8:00 PM - January 3, 2021

Pre-game stories of interest

Tonight won’t be Doug Pederson’s last coaching the Eagles. Jeff McLane and yours’ truly confirmed the coach is expected to return next season ahead of his season-ending meeting with Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie.

Pederson may be back, but the defensive side of the coaching staff will undergo major changes in the offseason. As Les Bowen reports, defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is planning on letting his contract expire after tonight’s game.

The rumor mill surrounding Carson Wentz is churning, too. According to an ESPN report, the quarterbacks’ relationship with Pederson is fractured and a trade request is expected soon. Paul Domowitch has the details.

What will happen with Howie Roseman in the offseason? Marcus Hayes argues the general manager deserves more power.