For starters, his quarterback still has his back.
“When that happens, it’s tough but you move on," Carson Wentz said. "Obviously any time you leave plays out there, it’s frustrating, but I’m coming right back to him on the next play."
This is where it needs to again be pointed out that Wentz did go back to him on the next play -- it was an incompletion -- and on the first play of the next drive -- don't tell me you forgot about the drop we showed you earlier. They were both incompletions.
Despite that, he's not giving up on the team's 20th-overall pick from a year ago.
“We have not lost confidence in [Agholor]. I have not lost confidence in him,” said Wentz, who added that he still has confidence in all his receivers. “We’ve just got to keep encouraging him. He works his tail off. A lot of things that he does, you guys don’t see — after practice, before practice, he wants to be great. He’s working his tail off. So we’re just going to keep working with him.”
First off, Matthews, the Eagles' leading receiver, said it's difficult being an NFL skill position player. If a lineman misses a block or a pass-rusher attacks the wrong gap, television viewers might not recognize the mistakes.
But a dropped pass? Everyone can see that, Matthews said.
Plus, Agholor's draft position (the Eagles took him 20th overall) brings its own unique stress.
"That stigma, when you throw 'first-round pick' out there, it's like that person isn't even a person anymore," said Matthews, whom the Eagles drafted in the second round in 2014. "Now, he doesn't have the ability to go out there and work and grow at the level Nelson Agholor was meant to grow. Now, he's compared to every other first-round pick."
Agholor crumbles; he's no building block - Inquirer
The ups and downs that Wentz has experienced since that blazing three-game beginning to his pro career should have been expected. He's a rookie quarterback, and rookie quarterbacks struggle, and Wentz has shown enough good things to suggest that he can be a terrific player in this league for a long time. Nevertheless, what the Eagles showed on Sunday, more than anything, is that having a potential franchise quarterback doesn't and won't mean much if they can't surround him with competent teammates - competent, in its most literal definition.
Forget a game-breaking wide receiver or shutdown cornerbacks. Those seem luxuries now. Wentz will need a defense that, over a 92-yard touchdown drive, doesn't commit three penalties and allow an opposing offense to convert first downs in second-and-20 and third-and-16 situations. The Eagles' defense did that in the second quarter. He will need a wide receiver who doesn't give up on a deep throw and allow an opposing cornerback to intercept the pass. Bryce Treggs did that in the third quarter. He will need a head coach who can coax that intelligent, efficient play out of his team and a player-personnel chief who can find and acquire the right players to put around him. Pederson and Howie Roseman have to do that. The Eagles may very well have their quarterback for the next decade, but they've only just begun to build around him, and make no mistake: They're still counting how many bricks they have.
When the Houston Texans and Oakland Raiders take the field at Mexico City's sold-out Estadio Azteca on Monday night, Brock Osweiler, Derek Carr and their teammates will be treated to the standard NFL amenities of a recently refurbished stadium. But when the Philadelphia Eagles and New Orleans Saints contested the first NFL game in Mexico on Aug. 5, 1978, the conditions were hardly befitting of professional American football.
"When we went there, they weren't prepared," Ron Jaworski, the Eagles' starting quarterback that season, says of that preseason matchup 38 years ago. "We played in a bullring, the locker rooms were too small, and the goal posts were crooked."