Good morning. The banged-up Eagles received high grades for their competitiveness, if not for their execution, after Sunday’s 30-28 loss to the visiting Baltimore Ravens. Now 1-4-1, the Eagles have little time to dwell on the defeat.
That’s because the Eagles will host the New York Giants on Thursday night and the big question will be how many healthy bodies will there be to take on a Giants team that beat Washington on Sunday for its first win of the season.
— Marc Narducci (email@example.com)
Carson Wentz drew admiration for the courage and fight he showed in Sunday’s loss. Actually, he has shown that type of courage all season, and throughout his career, but one has to wonder if all the hits are eventually going to add up.
Sunday, he took 16 hits. Wentz was sacked six times. Pro Football Focus wrote that eight players had at least two pressures on Wentz. Wentz attempted 40 passes, and he was running for his life on many plays.
Remember when the Eagles sacked Joe Burrow eight times, leaving observers wondering if the Bengals rookie would make it through the season? Now Wentz has moved ahead of Burrow for the NFL lead in most times sacked.
According to NFL.com, here are the leaders through the Sunday afternoon games:
Carson Wentz, Eagles, 25
Joe Burrow, Cincinnati, 24
Deshaun Watson, Houston, 19
Daniel Jones, N.Y. Giants, 17
Russell Wilson, Seattle, 17
Of these five, only Wilson, who has appeared in only five games, is playing on a winning team. Wentz is being sacked 4.16 times per game. Over a 16-game season, if this average holds, Wentz will be sacked 66 times.
If he keeps that pace, that would be the fourth-highest single-season total since 1970. Here are the quarterbacks who have been sacked the most in a season since 1970, according to pro-football reference.com.
1. David Carr, Houston, 76, 2002
2. Randall Cunningham, Eagles, 72, 1986
3. David Carr, Houston, 68, 2005
4. Jon Kitna, Detroit, 63, 2006
Here are Wentz’s sack totals year by year
Year, Games, Sacks
2016, 16, 33
2017, 13, 28
2018, 11, 31
2019, 16, 37
2020, 6, 25
While Wentz brings some of the sacks on himself with his refusal to give up on a play, he has played this year behind an injured offensive line. Against Baltimore, center Jason Kelce was the only projected offensive-line starter from the beginning of the season still in the lineup.
Wentz suggested that there were no physical problems when asked after the game how he was feeling after taking a pounding by the Ravens.
“Pain and soreness, bumps and bruises — that’s part of football,” he said.
He shrugs it off. At 6-foot-5 and 233 pounds, Wentz is built to take hits and administer them, but all quarterbacks eventually have a limit.
Question: Who called that last two-point conversion play and why? — @Rosebuddies on Twitter
Answer: Thanks for the question and to all who sent in some version of it. Pederson calls the plays, and he owned up to it. When pressed on why he went with the run, he didn’t get specific other than saying he thought it was the best play. Wentz also expressed confidence in the play, saying, “We had a scouted look there that we felt confident in that play.”
Apparently, though, the Ravens expected it. In the postgame, linebacker Matthew Judon, who along with L.J. Fort, made the play, said, “We knew they were going to try to run it. They went heavy and tried to run it in. … They’d been running it well, so we had to come up with a big stop there and we came up with it.”