Week 1 Report Card: Eagles run wild on the Redskins

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The Eagles made their season debut against the Redskins in Landover, Maryland on Monday Night Football. The results were mostly impressive until the fourth quarter of the game. The Eagles offense was blazing outside of a horrible call on a forward pass that was ruled a backwards pass and went for a Redskins defensive touchdown. DeSean Jackson and LeSean McCoy both went over 100 yards before the end of the first-half. Michael Vick was sensational in the first two quarters with with two passing touchdowns and a rushing score. McCoy added a touchdown in the third quarter and finished one yard shy of tying his career high in rushing at 184 yards.

The Eagles defense kept the Redskins' offense to zero points through the first 44 minutes and 54 seconds of the game, before giving up a rushing touchdown to running back Alfred Morris at the end of the third quarter. Quarterback Robert Griffin eventually led the Redskins to two touchdown drives, with one those drives coming from a start with great field position.

The Eagles were able to close out the game by managing the clock on offense and making plays,for the most part, on defense to settle the final score at 33-27. The Eagles start the season at 1-0

Hot

  • Michael Vick: The guy was clearly impressive on Monday night. Not only did he mostly make good decisions, but he also killed the Redskins with his arm and his feet. While he still seemingly has trouble with blitz recognition, Vick showed significant improvement on his pocket awareness. When he felt pressure, Vick scrambled and either threw to an open man, threw out-of-bounds or tucked it and ran. Vick finish 15-of-25 for 203 passing yards and two passing touchdowns. He added 54 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Outstanding game for the veteran. His only turnover was a questionable call on a backwards pass that resulted in a Redskins' touchdown. In my unbiased position, it was a forward pass, but I understand why it was not reversed after a review. Tough break on a tough call. He also blocked for his running backs several times, which is extremely uncommon in the NFL for a quarterback and admirable.
  • LeSean McCoy: I said on Twitter earlier in the week that I thought McCoy could be in the MVP discussion this season and his 2013 debut didn't make me look ridiculous. Shady was phenomenal as always in space and was able evade tackles left and right. His masterpiece was on a 34-yard run, in which zoomed through several players untouched on his way to the end zone. He finished one yard shy of his career high with 184 rushing yards and a touchdown. He also caught a five-yard pass. McCoy is absolutely scary in this offense.
  • DeSean Jackson: The play-maker came out firing on Monday Night. He constantly got open and should toughness in the first half. He had a 10-yard catch where he was quickly thrown to the ground, but he was able to hold onto the ball. He had a nice touchdown in the first quarter. Jackson finished with 104 receiving yards and a score.
  • DeMeco Ryans: "Cap" had a solid game with eight tackles and a very violent sack on Robert Griffin III.
  • Brent Celek: The tight end scored a touchdown and had a couple of nice catches. He finished with two catches for 56 yards and a touchdown.
  • Riley Cooper: While he was held to only two catches for 14 yards, his blocking was great, especially on long runs by McCoy and Vick.
  • Brandon Boykin: The young cornerback was all over the field on Monday night and defended several passes. He finished the game with the first interception of his young career and added five tackles.
  • Trent Cole: Wow. A lot of us thought this guy was done in Philadelphia after his mediocre preseason, but we were very, very wrong. Cole consistently got pressure and was always in the Redskins' backfield. He finished with three tackles and a forced fumble, which happened on the first drive of the game for the Eagles' defense. The play was a major momentum-changer.
  • Cary Williams: The cornerback had a rough introduction to Philadelphia over the last few months, but he is clearly here to play. Williams was able to secure a sack and an interception during the game, while being adequate in coverage. Perhaps his most important play was a pass breakup on a Redskins' fourth-down, late in the fourth quarter. His diving interception was a thing of beauty. We're sorry Cary.
  • Mychal Kendricks: What a difference a year and a new scheme makes. I will be the first to admit that I was unhappy when he was drafted to be a 4-3 outside linebacker, as I believed he was more of a 3-4 inside linebacker. Turns out, he truly is a perfect fit for the inside linebacker spot in the 3-4. He was everywhere on Monday night and really was impressive in the run game. He led the team with ten tackles and recovered a fumble forced by Cole.
  • Evan Mathis: If you watched the game closely, you would see that Mathis constantly controlled his man. He had a very solid game.
  • Jason Peters: While he wasn't perfect, having him on the field was an improvement.
  • Fletcher Cox: He was definitely a force on Monday night. While the box score will show just three tackles and a sack, Cox really pushed the pocket with consistency.
  • Chris Polk and the special teams unit: The "Incredible Polk" was terrific in coverage on Monday, as was most of the group. Very solid effort on the third phase.
  • Donnie Jones: This is what a real punter looks like Eagles fans. He had six punts and planted four within the opposing 20-yard line.

Not

  • Chip Kelly's challenging ability: I am not sure what he thought he saw on the Zach Ertz drop, but that was clearly a drop due to a lack of a pass interference call.
  • Zach Ertz: Speaking of the rookie, he had at least two drops on Monday night. He even made his lone catch a lot more dramatic than it needed be. He caught an 11-yard pass from Vick with no one around and still rolled backwards to maintain the catch. His college days were full of drops, so his NFL performance thus far is a bit discouraging. He is also still a subpar blocker.
  • Todd Herremans: I am not sure what the offensive line calls were, so I can't really hate on Todd too much. However, he constantly looked like he let blitzers and possibly even his own man just run by him. Some of those blunders may have happened partially because of rookie Lane Johnson or Vick's protection calls.
  • Pat Chung: While he went mostly unnoticed in the passing game, his allowance of a late, long touchdown by the Redskins was awful. He seemed to not know where his man was and if he had shown a bit more awareness, the pass would have been intercepted. He did well against the run for the most part, but giving up a touchdown like that is inexcusable.
  • Jordan Poyer: He did well on special teams, but was over-matched on defense. He allowed a handful of catches and really wasn't all that impressive in coverage based on first viewing.

Miscellaneous Musings

  • LeSean McCoy led the league in rushing by halftime. Very impressive outing for the former and future Pro Bowler.
  • People question DeSean Jackson's toughness but he was absolutely impressive with his aggression toward DeAngelo Hall. You have to admire a former Andy Reid player showing serious "fight" on the field.
  • The Eagles rotated and rearranged offensive linemen several times during the game. Lane Johnson, in particular, was used at left guard a few times with Todd Herremans kicking out to right guard. The most successful use of the rearrangement came on the 34-yard touchdown run by McCoy.
  • The defense didn't allow a point for 44 minutes and 54 seconds. Say what you want about the fourth quarter, but that is absolutely improvement from last year.
  • Bryce Brown was up-and-down in Week 1 and has to stop bouncing out side. The gesture made him lose yardage a few times.
  • The Eagles are the first team to run 53 plays in the first-half of a game since the 1998 Minnesota Vikings.
  • The Eagles used a lot of their young guys outside of special teams. Rookies like Jake Knott, Damion Square, Jordan Poyer, Lane Johnson, and Zach Ertz all noticeably played on offense and defense. I did not notice Earl Wolff on first viewing, which is likely a good thing.
  • Kurt Coleman and Nate Allen didn't stick out in a bad way, so there is that.
  • While he fumbled earlier in the game and that led to a Redskins' touchdown, Jason Avant made two major plays to make up for his mistake. He had a long stretch for first-down on a drive where the Eagles were trying to run out the clock and he also secured the game-ending onside kick. Shout out to Jake Knott for helping Avant protect the ball in the pile.
What did you notice during Monday night's game? Tell us what you thought was "hot" and what was "not."

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