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Battle for First Place between the Eagles and Cowboys at the Linc in a hostile environment, it should of been the Eagles game for the taking right? Well we were all blindsided by the Eagles latest success and the hype for QB Nick Foles as he looks horrendous with the rest of the offense as they lay an egg against a mediocre Cowboys defense Sunday afternoon to drop to 3-4 and out of first place in the division!

Eagles Notebook

-Point taken … The Eagles defense has now held its opponents to under 21 points in each of the last three games. Coming into this week, only three other NFL teams had surrendered 21 points or less in each of its last two games (Green Bay, Kansas City and St. Louis).

-Division D … This year, NFC East QBs have posted a combined 69.2 quarterback rating against the Eagles defense, completing just 82 of 148 passes (55.4%), while throwing 7 interceptions … The Eagles defense has also limited NFC East teams to 211 rush yards on 58 attempts (3.6 ypc), an average of just 70.3 yards per game


-Offensive nuggets ...RB LeSean McCoy set a record for the most yards from scrimmage (952) by an Eagle through the first seven games of a season … With 6,406 career yards from scrimmage, McCoy passed Steve Van Buren (6,383) for eighth place in team history … McCoy (976 career rushing attempts) also passed Ricky Watters (975) for 5th place in team annals … WR DeSean Jackson tied Bobby Walston for 7th place in team history with 311 career receptions


-Birdseed …  After nailing a 31-yard field goal, K Alex Henery passed Tom Dempsey and Cliff Patton and moved into 15th place in team history with 283 career points … LB DeMeco Ryans became the second Eagle this season to record a sack and interception in the same game (CB Cary Williams did so on 9/9 at Washington). It was Ryans’ third career game posting both an interception and a sack, and his second time doing so as an Eagle after accomplishing that feat on 9/16/12 vs. Baltimore … WR Riley Cooper has posted 10 catches for 208 yards in his last two games … S Earl Wolff recorded his first career interception … DE Vinny Curry recorded his second sack of the season … QB Matt Barkley, WR B.J. Cunningham and RB Matthew Tucker all played in their first NFL game, becoming the 9th, 10th and 11th players to do so in an Eagles uniform this season

Grades

-Offense: F: QB Nick Foles is brought right back down to earth after this faulty performance from the young quarterback. He just looked lost out on that field. He was missing wide open receivers all game long. When they did have seperation he was overthrowing or underthrowing. And can't put the blame on the offensive line for not giving him time to throw the football. He hung onto the ball way too long and just looked like he was afraid to pull the trigger and would only throw to a reciever if he was completely open. It just seemed the kid cracked under pressure with this game meaning so much. But can't completely put all the blame on the kid. When he did put the ball where it needed to be, his weapons didn't help the cause with drop passes. and couldn't fin any seperation Foles finished 11/29 for 80yds before eventually exiting with a head injury.

But the offense all around looked out of sync. The Eagles couldn't find any success on the ground. Todd Herremans continued to get beat and the line didn't open any holes for RB Lesean McCoy. McCoy finished with 18 carries for 55 yards which is good for 3.1 yards a carry and the Eagles as a team only racked up 84 yards on the ground and only 278 yards of total offense when this was a team leading in the NFL in rushing with over 120yds a game and one of the top offenses in the NFL. They couldn't stay on the field long enough to put up a consistent drive only converting four third down conversions in 14 attempts.

The Eagles offense had some problems before but this game just opened up a can of worms and could be some time until it's fixed. To put only 3 points against a defense that has its own issues is astonishing and pathetic at the same time. And I know he was thrown in a horrible situation but Sunday's game also showed that QB Matt Barkley is not ready to take the lead and who knows if he will ever. He is the only guy in NFL history that can throw two interceptions on his first drive. He was not prepared and showed he doesn't have the mechanics just staring down his receivers throwing up prayers which resulted in 3 interceptions in 4 drives.

-Defense: B+: You have to give Billy Davis a lot of credit for his gameplan to contain this Cowboys offense. QB Tony Romo has been on a tear of late and even though he threw for 313 yards still held him to only one score through the air and forced two interceptions. The pass rush started strong in the first half but sort of fell off a bit and reason for the vulnerable secondary. And their were some bright spots.

CB Bradley Fletcher has continued to be the only consistent member of this secondary making some nice plays on the ball. Didn't allow his receiver to get too much of a step ahead of him to get beat deep. And LB Demeco Ryans perhaps had his best game in his Eagles career. He was making tackles left and right including a few key 3rd down stops when the game was still in reach. He recorded his first sack of the season and his first interception on the year.

For how much slack this unit has gotten this year, they are far from fixed but continue to make progress. When they only allow 17 points and 5 of 16 on 3rd down to an offense that has weapons all over the place and are scoring over 30 points a game, you done your job. TE Jason Witten wasn't too much of a factor as he can only reel in 4 grabs for 48 yards. WR Dez Bryant did have over 100 yards in the game but didn't really have too many impactful plays. But Romo did do a good job distributing the football as he hit eight different targets in the football game.

Hopefully they can build upon this performance moving forward and continue to play as well as they did overall yesterday because they did their job as a defense to give this team a chance to win this football game.

-Special Teams: A+: The biggest playmaker in this football game besides Demco Ryans and Bradley Fletcher absolutely has to be Punter Donnie Jones. He might be the biggest free agent acquisition for the Birds this offseason. 9 Punts for 419yds and and a couple of inside the 20 with only one touchback. In such a close battle of a game, field position was key and Jones did his part to make things difficult for the Cowboys.

One thing that continues to lack from the Eagles special teams is the lack of success from the Eagles return game. Damaris Johnson is just not the answer for the Eagles return problem woes. I understand Desean Jackson can't be the full time returner but with a guy that has big play ability it would make more sense to have him back there and get some type of production.
-Coaching: C: Once again Chip Kelly's play calling and decision making was questionable... Where is the innovator we were suppose to get from the man in charge?

-Overall: D: It has been a trend all season for this Eagles team. They just can't put together a complete game where all three units are on the top of their game. When one unit plays well the others don't. Luckily for the Birds they have the Giants this week and then the Raiders on the road the following week to get back in the thick of things but only if they know who their QB is.... Both Vick and Foles are banged up and Barkley sure hell isn't ready.... Hopefully they don't come out flat and lay an egg like they did last week otherwise it's going to be a long 12 more weeks of the season....

 Box Score

PHI

DAL

1st Downs

19

22

Passing 1st downs

13

18

Rushing 1st downs

3

2

1st downs from Penalties

3

2

3rd down efficiency

4-18

5-16

4th down efficiency

1-1

0-0

Total Plays

75

75

Total Yards

278

368

Yards per play

3.7

4.9

Total Drives

14

15

Passing

287

257

Comp - Att

22-31

26-43

Yards per pass

9.3

6.0

Interceptions thrown

0

1

Sacks - Yards Lost

1-9

2-16

Rushing

138

94

Rushing Attempts

33

21

Yards per rush

4.2

4.5

Red Zone (Made-Att)

2-3

1-2

Penalties

3-31

8-71

Turnovers

0

1

Fumbles lost

0

0

Interceptions thrown

0

1

Defensive / Special Teams TDs

0

0

Possession

26:14

33:46