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Eagles vs. Steelers Final Score: 10 things we learned in Philadelphia's preseason victory

Here's what we learned about the Birds.

Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The Philadelphia Eagles are 2-0 in the 2016 NFL preseason after beating the Pittsburgh Steelers by a final score of 17-0. Now let's look at 10 things we learned from this meaningless game.

1) It's hard not to get excited about Jim Schwartz's defense

Yes, it's only preseason. Yes, the Steelers were without four of their best offensive players, including their starting quarterback. Still, the Eagles finished with four interceptions in this game. Philadelphia's defense now has eight turnovers through eight quarters this summer. They've also held their opponents to nine points during that span. That's pretty good.

Part of the reason why the Eagles have had success is because they've been able to get consistent pressure on the quarterback. The secondary isn't looking too bad, either.

Some good historical perspective here.

2) It is hard to get excited about the Eagles offense

67 total offensive plays for only 298 yards and one touchdown. Not so great. Now, it's certainly true the Eagles were going vanilla on offense. They play the Steelers in Week 3 and they don't want to tip their hand too much in a meaningless game. Still, there were execution errors. Nelson Agholor and Josh Huff had drops. Zach Ertz had a bad penalty that wiped out a big gain from Rueben Randle. Sam Bradford continues to check down the heck out of the ball without ever really looking to go deep. As expected, it's not an overly inspiring unit.

3) The Eagles' cornerback situation may be better than some thought

Allow me to prematurely pat myself on the back here. I wrote a piece earlier this summer about how people may be sleeping on the Eagles corners. It's not like they have all-star talent at the position, but it's not like they have terrible players there, either. Leodis McKelvin was active against the Steelers and had a few pass breakups. Nolan Carroll made a great deflection on a deep pass on the first play of the game and later jumped a route to get his pick-six. Ron Brooks looked decent as the starting slot corner. Aaron Grymes made an incredible diving interception in the end zone and could earn a spot as the sixth corner. Even the struggling Eric Rowe broke up a pass. It must be noted that this group is benefiting from the quarterback pressure the defense has been able to generate.

4) The offensive line wasn't a disaster

I almost forgot Lane Johnson wasn't starting at right tackle tonight because, overall, the offensive line seemed to hold up OK. The big guys up front got decent push in the run game and Bradford had plenty of time to throw. The starting quarterback was only sacked once and that was on a play where a linebacker was left unblocked. There's still plenty of reason to be concerned about the offensive line, but at least they're not showing to be a total mess.

5) The wide receivers are showing some signs of life

Eagles receivers last week: 52 yards and 10 catches on 21 targets.

Eagles receivers this week: 127 yards and 13 catches on 21 targets.

Still not very good, but at least the Eagles pass catchers weren't downright abysmal in this game. Agholor had a really nice leaping grab on a ball thrown high by Bradford. Nice of him to finally show up in a good way this summer. Paul Turner had an incredible one-handed catch and continues to show why the coaching staff is high on him.

If I'm the Eagles, I'm keeping the following receivers: Jordan Matthews, Nelson Agholor, Dorial Green-Beckham, Paul Turner, and Chris Givens. There are serious concerns about Rueben Randle's effort and Huff continues to struggle. For those wondering why I'm keeping Givens: he hasn't been great this summer, but he's flashed deep speed at times. The Eagles lack vertical talent and he at least provides that skill set.

6) Steven Means needs to make this team

The Eagles potentially have a real nice four-man rotation at defensive end. Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, and Connor Barwin have played well this summer. Means has also really shined as a pass rusher. He clobbered Landry Jones as the quarterback was throwing to force an interception. Means also forced Mike Glennon to throw a pick last week. He deserves playing time on a rotational basis.

Maybe the Eagles even have a five man rotation? Marcus Smith actually had a better night than I realized. He finished with four tackles, one sack, and two tackles for loss. He did have a bad offsides penalty, however.

7) Kenjon Barner is justifying the hype

Barner surprisingly drew a lot of praise from the coaching staff this offseason. As it turns out, they weren't just being nice. Barner has looked solid in game action this summer. He's rushed for 76 yards and one touchdown on 13 carries. With Wendell Smallwood missing the first two preseason games, Barner could be the third running back in the rotation behind Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles.

8) Linebacker depth is a concern

Joe Walker left the game early and did not return. The Eagles reportedly fear he suffered an ACL injury, which would end the rookie's season. This could be really bad news because Philadelphia was already looking thin at linebacker. The Eagles need someone reliable behind injury-prone starter Jordan Hicks. Howie Roseman might find himself reaching out to Stephen Tulloch shortly.

9) The kicker competition might not be over just yet

Caleb Sturgis has clearly outkicked Cody Parkey all offseason. But maybe Parkey isn't totally doomed yet. Sturgis suffered a concussion on Thursday night and could miss some time while he goes through the NFL's mandatory concussion protocol. Parkey will try to make his case while Sturgis misses time. To his credit, the 24-year-old nailed a 40-yard attempt against Pittsburgh.

10) Preseason football just isn't the same without Carson Wentz

For the sake of preseason football having some intrigue value, here's hoping Wentz is able to return soon. The rookie quarterback is easily one of the most interesting things about this team. Getting to see him play is like a reward after having to sit through Bradford and Daniel. It sounds like Wentz won't be back in game action until Sept. 1, if he's even ready by then.

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