The Philadelphia Eagles are now 0-2 in the 2015 NFL regular season schedule after being defeated by the Dallas Cowboys by a final score of 20-10. It was an awful, downright pathetic performance. Here are 10 things we learned from this wretched game. There is a lot to discuss, so let's get right to it.
1) The run game still isn't working
I've said it all along: Philadelphia's run game is the key to their success. It's going to make or break this team. So far, the Eagles haven't been able to get it going, and it's broken the team. The Eagles have rushed for 70 yards on 33 rushing attempts this season. That's pathetic. It's a cascade effect, too. The lack of a viable running game prevents the Eagles from sustaining scoring drives. With the Eagles unable to stay on the field on offense, there's all that much more pressure on the defense to step up. The Eagles are doomed if they can't soon revive their running game.
2) Offensive line play is still bad
Part of the reason why the run game has struggled is due to poor blocking up front. The Eagles just aren't creating much room for DeMarco Murray to run. The team clearly isn't very confident in the interior offensive line considering how they aren't running up the middle with any frequency. Pass protection has been an issue at times as well.
3) Sam Bradford is Sam Badford
Clever, right? No. Not at all. But yeah, Bradford wasn't good. He finished 23/37 (62.1%) for 224 yards (6.1. average), one garbage touchdown, two interceptions, and a 65.6 passer rating. His interception to Sean Lee in the end zone was awful and it really killed any hope the Eagles had of making a comeback. He didn't seem to be seeing the field well and his accuracy was off at times. To Bradford's defense, it wasn't like he was getting a ton of help. Which leads me to my next point ...
4) Too many drops
Just way too many drops. Jordan Matthews had two big ones. Miles Austin had one. Zach Ertz had a very catchable pass go off his hands and get intercepted to essentially seal the game. The Eagles offense is struggling enough as it is. This team can't afford to continue to waste opportunities. Drops were obviously a big issue in Week 1 as well. Malcolm Jenkins dropped two interceptions. Jordan Matthews dropped a pass on fourth down to end the game. This needs to get fixed.
5) Malcolm Jenkins is showing up
I know I just criticized Jenkins for his drops, but give him credit for being one of the few players who has looked pretty good so far this season. Jenkins made two really good solo tackles near the line of scrimmage against the Cowboys. He also recovered Byron Maxwell's forced fumble. Jenkins has been good on the back end and he's also been a solution to the Eagles' nickel cornerback position.
6) Inside linebacker is suddenly a concern again
DeMeco Ryans really struggled early on in the game. Then Kiko Alonso and Mychal Kendricks both had to leave the game early. Jordan Hicks looked solid and forced a fumble on Tony Romo, but the rookie also gave up a big passing play. The extent of the Alonso/Kendricks injuries remain to be seen, but if they're expected to miss a significant amount of time, well ... that's a big blow to Philadelphia's defense.
7) Byron Maxwell still isn't looking so great
Maxwell didn't struggle as much as he did against Julio Jones in Week 1, and he did a nice job of forcing a fumble, but he still was an issue at times. His effort looked questionable on the play where Terrance Williams scored a touchdown at the end of the game. He hasn't been the cornerback the Eagles paid for.
8) Chip Kelly's general manager moves aren't looking so hot
Maxwell has struggled Alonso is hurt. Bradford hasn't looked great. The neglected offensive line has struggled. Murray hasn't been able to run. It's still early, but Kelly's offseason moves haven't really been paying off so far. To make matters worse, Kelly has been getting outcoached.
9) The NFC East is terrible
The Cowboys lead the division but they haven't even looked all that great and now they're likely without Tony Romo and Dez Bryant for an extended period of time. Washington is 1-1 but how far are they really going with Kirk Cousins at quarterback? The 0-2 New York Giants look bad. The 0-2 Eagles also look bad. Dave Mangels said it earlier this week ... everyone stinks.
10) Eagles are in a bad spot
This was arguably a must-win game for the Eagles ... and they lost. They're now 0-2 in the conference and 0-1 in the division. It's a really rough start. Now the Eagles have to go on the road for their next games against the New York Jets and the Washington Redskins. Those games seem winnable on paper, but they certainly won't be very winnable if the Eagles' offense doesn't rebound. The Eagles just haven't shown many encouraging signs this season after looking so good in the preseason. Maybe things will get better, but until they do it's going to be hard to fully believe in them.