Grading the Eagles: Running backs get an A- in win over Jaguars | Paul Domowitch
Carson Wentz threw three more touchdown passes, and the defense held tough at the end in the Eagles' 24-18 win over Jacksonville.
Paul Domowitch hands out his grades for the performance. See what he has to say and then grade the Eagles yourself.
Considering the shuffling the Eagles had to do up front because of injuries, the success the Eagles had running the ball – 133 yards on 28 carries – was remarkable. Rookie Josh Adams, who had just 11 carries in the first seven games, rushed for 61 yards on nine carries, including 17- and 21-yard runs. Carson Wentz had two more rushing first downs, including a 13-yard scramble on a third-and-11 on the Eagles' first touchdown drive.
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Carson Wentz struggled early, turning the ball over on both of the Eagles' first two possessions. But he rebounded nicely, throwing three more touchdown passes to give him 13 in six starts. Jordan Matthews caught four passes for 93 yards, including a big 36-yard reception on the Eagles' game-winning fourth-quarter touchdown drive.
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Blake Bortles broke free a couple of times and rushed for 43 yards on eight carries. But the Eagles' defense, which had struggled against the run the previous two games, held the rest of the Jags' offense to 27 yards on nine carries.
Jim Schwartz unleashed the hounds early and often against Blake Bortles, blitzing possibly more than he ever has in his career. Playing most of the second half without cornerback Jalen Mills, and already missing safety Rodney McLeod and nickel corner Sidney Jones, the Eagles had some anxious fourth-quarter moments, but sacked Bortles four times and allowed just one TD pass in the game.
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The Eagles had some uncharacteristic breakdowns on a 23-yard Dede Westbrook punt return that gave the Jags excellent field position on a late-third-quarter drive. It was the longest return of the season against them. Four of Jake Elliott's kickoffs resulted in touchbacks and the other was returned just 17 yards. Elliott made his only field goal attempt – an early 31-yarder.
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A loss would have dropped the Eagles to 3-5 and put them in a difficult hole. They suffered injuries to their offensive line and secondary, but showed impressive resilience and withstood yet another fourth-quarter scare. Rookies such as safety Avonte Maddox and running back Josh Adams stepped up and gave them solid performances.