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Eagles news: The Eagles are apparently too exciting

News and notes for 11/8

Minnesota Vikings v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Jenkins says Eagles must be boring to win - Inquirer

Jenkins made a plea for pragmatism and common sense and it wasn't a coincidence that the coaching staff was included in the audience. Study the Eagles and what do you see? Are there game-changing superstars at the skill positions? There are not. Are there shutdown defenders who don't need the help of others? That would be a no. What you see is a decent football team that could be more, but only if it isn't asked to play like a great one.

That's a sobering bit of analysis to drop into a locker room after a tough loss - everyone wants to think his team is great - but it was accurate.

"When we take care of the football on offense, whether punting it or kicking field goals . . . just be patient, methodical with the football, not turning it over, and then have our defense be stingy like it has been, not making mistakes, not beating ourselves, and bank on the special teams to be devastating, that formula works for us," Jenkins said.

Vikings, Packers, Eagles have ample reason for full-blown panic -

The panic meter is on red. And it should be.

I love Carson Wentz. He's going to be a star in this league. But he's still a rookie and didn't play well in a 28-23 loss to the Giants that dropped Philly to 4-4. (Don't forget: The Eagles were one of the NFL's big stories through September, starting at 3-0 with fine quarterback play and a stifling defense.)

OK, I'm certainly not gonna put all of this on the first-year signal caller. Frankly, I blame offensive tackle Lane Johnson, who is in the midst of a 10-game suspension for violating the league's policy on performance enhancing drugs. His absence has derailed the Wentz Wagon -- and the Eagles' season. And the aformentioned defense has given up 57 points in the past two weeks (yielding a whopping 460 yards of offense to the Cowboys in the Week 8 loss).

And really, Sunday's loss was largely on Doug Pederson. Twice in the second quarter, the first-year head coach eschewed a field goal ... only to get stuffed on fourth-and-short. Think those six points could've come in handy in a five-point loss? Way too aggressive. And running the read option with Wentz? That's amateur hour.

In the wide-open NFC, that's a terrible loss to a division rival -- allowing the Giants, hardly a juggernaut, to improve to 5-3. And while I loved the Wentz draft pick, I was dubious on the Pederson hire. His in-game decisions confirm my skepticism.

Ranking the NFC East’s Quarterbacks - Fox Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles were obviously fine with giving Wentz the keys to the car this season after shipping Sam Bradford to Minnesota for a first- and fourth-round pick. They made the right move in doing so, but they’re also working through Wentz’s growing pains. That’s not to say Wentz has been bad, but he’s looked like a rookie after a 3--0 start.

With the game on the line, Wentz struggled mightily against the Giants on Sunday. He went 4-for-12 on the Eagles’ final three drives, failing to put the ball in the end zone with a chance to tie it. Not all of that falls on him, of course, but he has got to be better late in games, which he simply hasn’t been. In the fourth quarter, he’s completed 29 of 48 passes with zero touchdowns and an interception (68.8 passer rating).

On the season, Wentz’s numbers have been relatively good but not great. Certainly not as solid as they were in his first three starts, when he had five touchdown passes and no interceptions. He’s thrown for 1,890 yards, nine touchdowns and five interceptions in eight starts, completing 64.4 percent of his passes. His 6.9 yards per attempt leaves plenty to be desired, and while that’s not a direct indicator of how often a quarterback takes shots downfield, Wentz does often throw short passes rather than deep ones.

Wentz still has plenty of developing to do as he’s currently 30th in total QBR, but there are clearly signs of promise and potential. He has all of the tools – a big arm, athleticism, terrific work ethic, outstanding football IQ – to be a top quarterback in the NFL, and he just needs time to build on those assets.

Doug Pederson letting down rookie Carson Wentz in worst way - Sporting News

The Eagles are also trying to force Darren Sproles into a busy power back role, when he's more effective as a third-down change of pace runner and outlet receiver. The few times Pederson trusts Wentz to throw down field, it's been often low-percentage situations to the wrong personnel. Ryan Mathews isn't used enough beyond goal-line situations and Jordan Matthews is thrown to too much in the same slot spots.

There's a bit of an identity crisis, too. While the Eagles enjoyed their best deep ball successes of the season against the Giants, there also was the inexplicable forcing of zone-read wrinkles for Wentz. It shouldn't have taken this long for them to figure out that tight end Zach Ertz needed to be both Wentz's security blanket and top athletic playmaker.

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