The Philadelphia Eagles survived their early season hiccups to escape at 2-2 with a realistic shot at forcing a Week 7 showdown for the division against the Dallas Cowboys. They seemingly found their identity on offense after two scattershot weeks, but the questions on the defense still remain.
Thankfully for the Eagles, Green Bay Packers’ head coach Matt LaFleur did them a solid in their Week 4 match-up. It’s going to sound silly to say that the Packers could’ve abused the Eagles’ secondary for more than the 423 yards, but there was a drop off from the first half to the second half.
GB Passing 1st Half: 9.6 yards per dropback, 1 TD, 52% success rate
GB Passing 2nd Half: 6.5 yards per dropback, 1 TD, 1 INT, 41% success rate
Through four weeks, the Eagles’ defense has been outright abused by play-action, something LaFleur abandoned for most of the game. Not just abused, we’re talking outright embarrassed. On the season the Eagles have allowed 72% of play-action passes to be completed for an average of 9.1 yards, 4 touchdowns, 0 interceptions, and a 133.8 QB Rating.
The Eagles are having massive issues being influenced by run fakes, getting to their drops, and then overlapping their zones. That matters a lot when the aforementioned Cowboys’ are third in the league for play-action usage.
Benjamin Solak has hinted at the Eagles commitment to stopping the run actually being bad for the overall defense and this profuse bleeding against play-action speaks to that. Perhaps Jim Schwartz seeing the Eagles’ second half success stopping the run while running more two high looks will help cauterize their gaping wound, but it’s deeper than simply not taking the cheese.
We talk about this and much more on The Kist & Solak Show #126. You can listen on the media player below or click here if the player doesn’t load. New to podcasts? Check out our guide on how to listen to BGN! FLY EAGLES FLY!’