Good morning, Eagles fans. In the first four games of the season, the Eagles had three total sacks. But in Sunday’s 31-6 win over the beleaguered New York Jets, the Eagles sacked quarterback Luke Falk 10 times for losses of 59 yards. Brandon Graham led the way with three sacks.
“This is my first time with three sacks in a game,” Graham said. “We started fast, and that’s what you dream of.”
For Falk and the 0-4 Jets it was nothing but a nightmare.
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The quarterbacks’ take on the sacks
After the game Falk, was asked how he would describe the Eagles’ pass rush.
“It was good,” he said.
“But when you get down in known passing situations, they can put their head back. I’ve just got to do a better job getting the ball out, being on the same page as the receivers, and we’ve just got to clean some things up,” Falk said.
That may be simplifying it a little, but it was the combination of Falk sometimes holding the ball too long and other times a porous offensive line getting torched.
“You have to protect the quarterback in this league, and that is the bottom line,” Jets center Ryan Kalil said. “For us it is about going to work and fixing the things we have to fix. A lot of it is technique, and that is what we have to do.”
If only it were that easy. After the game, Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz was asked whether he felt for Falk as he got pummeled by any of the seven different Eagles who recorded sacks.
“I feel bad for quarterbacks that have to play our D-line,” Wentz said. “I see it in training camp. Fortunately, I am wearing a red jersey so they aren’t hitting me, but our D-line is great, and they were able to get after him especially as we got up early and they knew they had to pass. Our D-line played great.”
The key is whether the Eagles can carry this into next week against the Minnesota Vikings, another team that doesn’t have an exceptional offensive line but is miles better than the Jets. Graham for one, feels that Sunday’s performance could be a springboard for the Eagles’ pass rush.
“I am just happy we won, got some sacks finally, and got in that column in a big way,” Graham said. “I am just excited for what’s to come because like I say, sacks come in bunches.”
What you need to know about the Eagles
Les Bowen praises the defense in his game story, but said it wasn’t the offense’s best day.
Mike Sielski writes that little could be determined about the Eagles after their win due to the ineptitude of the Jets.
Here is a look back at the Eagles game as it happened, including video highlights of many of the key plays.
Paul Domowitch gives his grades for the game. Hint: the defense aced its assignment.
Even though the Eagles entered the game with just three sacks, coach Doug Pederson said he was never concerned with the pass rush, as Damichael Cole writes.
The Eagles received a stellar performance from linebacker Nate Gerry, who had a 51-yard interception return for a touchdown. David Murphy writes about Gerry’s big day.
Jeff McLane has his up-down drill, and not surprisingly the defense was praised while the offense had mixed reviews.
McLane wonders how long the Eagles can keep winning without injured wide receiver DeSean Jackson.
As usual, EJ Smith has the social media reaction to the Eagles win.
Here is another spectacular photo gallery of the game from our Inquirer photographers.
Marcus Hayes has four quick takes on the Eagles win, beginning with the dominant play of Brandon Graham.
Hayes warns that Carson Wentz must play smarter if he wants to escape injury.
The defense played great, but Domowitch wonders how legitimate the performance was given the opponent.
Bowen has a collection of notes from the game, including why Corey Clement went after that punt, resulting in a turnover.
Stat of the day
According to the Eagles, they became the first team in NFL history to record 10 or more sacks, a fumble recovery touchdown, and a pick-six in the same game.
Stat of the day, part II
The Eagles are now 11-0 all-time against the Jets.
From the mailbag
Joe from Haddonfield was among a few emailers who asked this question: “Should Eagles fans be worried about the offense?”
What would it be like to be an Eagles fan, Joe, if you couldn’t worry? This was a tough day, no doubt, for the offense, but in the back of their mind, I think they realized they wouldn’t need to score much to win against the Jets. The Eagles offense barely outscored their own defense, 17-14.
There is no doubt that as the Eagles play much better teams than the Jets — which is most of the rest of the schedule, with the possible exception of Miami and a second game with Washington — they will have to do better offensively.
On the positive side, the offense went turnover-free, with the one fumble coming on special teams. Also, Carson Wentz has thrown for under 200 yards each of the past two weeks, and the Eagles won both. The offense did miss DeSean Jackson, who sat out his third game due to injury, and Wentz did overthrow a wide open Nelson Agholor on what could have been a touchdown, so it wasn’t a sharp performance.
The offense is capable of much more, but this week it looked like they played down to the competition, while the defense didn’t.