The Eagles offense did not get off to a fast start, was unbalanced in their play-calling, and failed to convert most of their third downs on Sunday against the Cowboys. Offensive coordinator Mike Groh spoke to reporters on Tuesday about the lack of snaps for Golden Tate and targets for Dallas Goedert, and mostly just echoed everything he’s said all season.
Here’s what the offensive coordinator had to say:
On dividing up snap counts
Groh said that Golden Tate is an important player to their offense, but that they probably played a little more 12 personnel against Dallas. They liked their matchup with two tight ends on the field which forced them to have only two wideouts in the game.
Later on he was asked if eventually Golden Tate could still be on the field in those 12 personnel sets, and Groh said “he can” and elaborated that it doesn’t mean that they eliminate Tate altogether when they use those packages and that he’ll still be in the game depending on what they want to get done.
Groh was asked about rookie Dallas Goedert being productive when he’s been targeted and why they haven’t looked to him more often. The offensive coordinator said that they are trying to get a lot of people targeted and that there’s only one ball. He did concede that Goedert has been making good plays and they are trying to find more ways to get him involved.
He went on to say that the lack of targets has nothing to do with having two tight ends with similar skill sets, but rather that they have a lot of players they are trying to get the ball too. Groh said that they think Goedert is going to be a good football player for a long time, and he’s someone they have a longterm plan for.
On how he plans to get Goedert more touches, but also try to spread the ball around to the skill positions, Groh said that it’s all about balance and trying to get those guys in the right position to make plays — but, that changes each and every week.
Later on, Groh was also asked about how they integrate Darren Sproles in the offense, as they try to account for his injuries and age. The OC said they don’t consider his age when making those decisions, but Duce Staley manages the substitution pattern and keeping an eye on that.
On Carson Wentz
Groh was asked about how Carson Wentz seemed to have success against Washington by moving around a bit more and getting out of the pocket, but that it didn’t seem to be the case on Sunday against Dallas. The OC noted that schematically, they were just trying to exploit areas they thought a defense may be less efficient — and specifically against Washington, Wentz created some of those plays on his own.
On the QB’s accuracy, Groh pointed out that his completion percentage is higher than last year, and that’s something that was a goal of theirs this season. He went on to say that, that increase is something nearly unheard of at the NFL level.
Groh wouldn’t discuss what he and the coaching staff have identified to Carson Wentz as areas they’d like to see improve, but collectively they all have things they want to work on.
On the dip in third-down effectiveness, Groh pointed to struggles being offense-wide. Groh said that on Sunday they were just bad overall on third down, not just Carson Wentz, and when you go 1-for-9 on third down it’s a collection of issues.
On running the option on 3rd and 1
Groh echoed what Doug Pederson explained on Monday, and defended the call and admitted that Dallas’ defense made a good play. He said they had a good scheme in for all the right reasons, and they had a good play and it didn’t work.
On Rams prep
When looking at the Rams defense, Groh said that they are disruptive and talented up front, and pointing out Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh deserve all the praise they get.
He was also asked to compare Carson Wentz with Jared Goff given his unique time spent training both of them, but Groh said that the Rams are having a good year and that he hasn’t been able to study Goff too much this season.
Groh also noted that they love Carson Wentz in Philadelphia, and that Groh himself is appreciative to be with the Eagles and that Wentz is going to be with the team for a very long time and win a lot of football games.
On his job security
He was asked about how he handles the criticism that comes with an ineffective offense, especially in terms of his job security. Groh said he just comes to work everyday, but he doesn’t get involved with all that other stuff.