Doug Pederson had been 4-0 on opening days. For a long time in the first half, it looked like it would improve to 5-0. But after taking a 17-0 lead, the Eagles collapsed during Sunday’s 27-17 loss to the host Washington Football Team.
Carson Wentz was sacked eight times and threw for only 73 yards in the second half. For the game, Wentz completed 24 of 42 passes for 270 yards and two interceptions and a 72.5 passer rating.
Pederson’s response to the loss was predictable, especially the way Washington’s defensive line dominated.
“It’s something that can’t happen, first and foremost, it can’t happen,” Pederson said.
When asked if the sacks were the offensive line’s fault or Wentz’s fault for holding the ball, he said, “I’d say it’s a little of both. Sacks don’t always go on the O-line, sacks don’t always go on the quarterback sometimes, you know protection. The backs are included in that, tight ends are included in that, and then the receivers just getting open so it’s there’s a lot that goes in.”
Pederson said the early part of the game went as expected, then...
“We thought we could attack against this team just come out and play tempo football and it’s something that our quarterback is good at, our offense is good at,” he said. “He came out and played extremely well and you know again I got to look at this film, to see exactly why there were some breakdowns.
Pederson then stated the obvious.
“We just got to continue to get better,” he said. “I’ve got to get better, the players got to get, the coaching staff, so this is one game of a long season and that’s what w’ere going to focus on this week.”
Wentz’s desire to extend plays, led to several sacks. He did admit. “I have to know better when to just get rid of the ball.”
After taking such a pounding, Wentz said all is well physically.
“I feel fine,” Wentz said. “It’s obviously been a while since we’ve been hit, just in general so Week One soreness is definitely going to set in tonight, but I’ll be fine and we’ll bounce back from this one.”
Pederson said his message to his team afterwards was direct.
“I just told them we got a to of work to do, today was not our best,” he said. “And we’ve got to eliminate the mistakes, we can’t have the sacks, we can’t have the turnovers that we had today and expect to win, especially against a division opponent. So it is just one game I told them we are going to go to work.”