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Eagles 30, Redskins 17: Five quick observations | Marcus Hayes

Carson Wentz looked better than Kirk Cousins in the Eagles' win, though the losses of Ron Darby and Jason Peters could hamper the Birds down the road.

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Alshon Jeffery caught some key passes from quarterback Carson Wentz in the 30-17 Week 1 win over the Washington Redskins.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Alshon Jeffery caught some key passes from quarterback Carson Wentz in the 30-17 Week 1 win over the Washington Redskins.Read moreYong Kim/Staff Photographer

LANDOVER, Md. — Five quick observations on the Eagles' season-opening 30-17 win over the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field:

1. From Wentz it came: Franchise quarterback Carson Wentz, outfitted with a cache of new weapons, began his second season with a win and showed remarkable progress over his impressive rookie season.

His first drive of the year finished with a 50-yard touchdown pass to Nelson Agholor, made possible by Wentz's elusiveness. He also muscled a 7-yard fadeaway out to Zach Ertz, a crucial play in the team's second scoring drive. He found Torrey Smith for 30 yards in the third quarter.

His fourth-quarter scramble and dump-off to Ertz on third down for 23 yards was brilliant, and his 24-yard missile to Alshon Jeffery set up a field goal with 1:59 to play, and he found Jeffery for a 2-point conversion with 1:29 left.

Wentz also threw high and behind Agholor for a fumble in the first quarter, and he threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown in the second quarter. He took a delay-of-game penalty after a Washington penalty that hamstrung a possible TD drive and intentional grounding penalty late in the third quarter sabotaged another drive.

Wentz finished 26-for-39 for 307 yards with two touchdowns, an interception and a 96.8 passer rating.

2. You like that? Much was made of Cousins' success against the Eagles. He had a 102.9 passer rating in his five games against the Eagles, but he'd been pretty good against other teams he'd faced more than once (Cowboys 103.5, Browns 109.6, Bears 104.2, Ravens 95.7).

He was abysmal Sunday: 23-for-40 with a touchdown and a goal-line interception to Jalen Mills, the biggest play of the game. Cousins last season asked his general manager if he liked one of his performances. So, to answer the question: Washington did not like Cousins at all on Sunday.

3. M*A*S*H: The Eagles lost two of the players they could least afford to lose at positions where they are thinnest: defensive back and offensive line.

Ron Darby, the third-year cornerback acquired from the Bills for receiver Jordan Matthews, left the game on a cart with 11:51 to play in the second quarter with what appeared to be a devastating ankle injury.

Corey Graham and Jaylen Watkins both saw playing time. Left tackle Jason Peters strained his groin in the second quarter, returned to start the third quarter then left for good in favor of Halapoulivaati Vaitai, who played well.

4. Big Sack Attack: The Eagles' defensive line logged all four sacks and created such a pressured pocket that Washington seldom dared to try to form a pocket after the first quarter, even after cornerback Ron Darby was knocked out of the game.

Defensive end Brandon Graham and defensive tackle Fletcher Cox each forced a fumble with a sack, and Cox returned Graham's for a clinching fourth-quarter touchdown. Graham added another later.

Tim Jernigan, Cox's new partner at defensive tackle, got a sack, too. A blitz call early in the fourth quarter led to a goal-line interception by second-year corner Jalen Mills, the first pick of his career.

5. Holding the line: Injuries meant that the Birds' offensive line played just a little more than one quarter of the preseason together, and it looked like it, even before Peters' injury. The line surrendered just two sacks but Wentz was harried all day. Even Wentz's 50-yard touchdown pass was thrown under duress.

Fortunately for Wentz, the line played better as the game progressed.

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