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Eagles-Chargers snap count analysis: Keep feeding DeVonta Smith

Playing time tracker.

Los Angeles Chargers v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Time to analyze the Philadelphia Eagles’ snap counts from their Week 9 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.

OFFENSE

  • No win for the Eagles despite the quarterback and starting offensive line playing the entire game. Jack Driscoll and Landon Dickerson both got noticeably banged up at different points but ultimately didn’t miss any snaps.
  • A little strange to see Quez Watkins as the Eagles’ top wide receiver in terms of playing time. He only saw three targets, which resulted in two catches for nine yards. Perhaps the Eagles wanted him out there as a field-stretching threat.
  • Dallas Goedert saw six targets, which tied for the team lead. Three recs for 43 yards. Would’ve had a bigger day had Jalen Hurts not overthrown him while he was wide open for a big play on Philly’s first drive.
  • Despite playing considerably fewer snaps than Watkins and Goedert, DeVonta Smith led the Eagles in receiving by catching five of his six targets for 116 yards (23.2 average) and one touchdown. Smith would’ve had another score if n Hurts didn’t throw wide of him in the end zone. The numbers haven’t always been there for Smith this season but that’s hardly all his fault. He’s getting open; it’s just about getting the ball to him. Feed DeVonta.
  • Jalen Reagor had the lowest snap percentage of his season. That is, outside of getting carted off the field early in Detroit last week. He saw just one target ... and it was a screen that went for negative six yards. Safe to say you’d like to see more out of a first-round pick. Reagor is averaging just 7.5 yards per reception this season.
  • Jack Stoll is still TE2 despite Tyree Jackson’s activation from injured reserve. We’ll continue to monitor if that changes moving forward.
  • Boston Scott saw slightly more playing time than Jordan Howard but it was the latter who led all Eagles running backs in carries. Howard’s 17 rushing attempts went for 71 yards (4.1 average) and one score while Scott’s 10 went for 40 yards (4.0 average). No Eagles running backs saw any targets.
  • Tyree Jackson saw a relatively small role in his NFL debut. The Eagles ran some 13 personnel looks (three tight ends) with him in. The team should look to get him more involved in the passing game moving forward. He has pass-catching talent. But it’s partially a matter of the quarterback being willing to throw over the middle.
  • Kenneth Gainwell’s usage continues to be confusing. The rookie didn’t play until garbage time in Detroit. This week, he took just two touches ... on back-to-back goal-to-go plays to give Philly a go-ahead touchdown late in the third quarter.
  • John Hightower barely played on offense in his season debut after being temporarily elevated from the practice squad. Hightower failed to impress as a kick returner as well.
  • Greg Ward’s sole offensive snap marked a season low. His previous low water mark was when he played seven snaps against the Bucs in Week 6. Ward hasn’t seen a target since Week 4.

DEFENSE

  • T.J. Edwards is clearly the Eagles’ top linebacker now. He has his limitations but he’s currently the best guy they’ve got at that position.
  • Anthony Harris wasn’t very limited in his first game back after missing two weeks.
  • Fletcher Cox led all defensive linemen in playing time. He had two solo tackles to show for it. Cox has two sacks in his last 13 games. It’s just not good enough. The Eagles’ decision to restructure his deal before this season was really bad. They should’ve been looking to move on.
  • Derek Barnett has two sacks in his last 14 games.
  • After a strong start to the season, Javon Hargrave has gone cold. First five games: six sacks, nine quarterback hits. Last four games: zero sacks, two quarterback hits. Perhaps Hargrave is hampered by his shoulder injury.
  • Davion Taylor did some good things out there. He logged the Eagles’ sole tackle for loss by blowing up a screen play.
  • Darius Slay didn’t have his best game prior to suffering a hamstring injury and not returning.
  • Josh Sweat had a really favorable matchup against a weakened right side of the Chargers’ offensive line. Despite this, he didn’t log a single stat.
  • Outside of the Detroit game, Milton Williams has zero sacks, zero QB hits, and zero TFLs in 211 snaps.
  • The biggest standout moment from Genard Avery is when he was part of the Eagles’ player introductions running out of the tunnel. The crowd went wild when he was announced. (They didn’t.)
  • Marcus Epps saw playing time in the slot after Avonte Maddox re-entered the game and left again.
  • Zech McPhearson saw his first significant playing time of the season when Slay got hurt. ZMP didn’t seem to be a liability out there in a small sample size.
  • Maddox got hurt on the Chargers’ first drive. He came back in but then had to come out again. His situation will be worth monitoring this week.
  • Ryan Kerrigan did not log a stat. He has one tackle in 209 snaps this season. Honestly, there’s no real point of him being on the team. He’s clearly not a long-term piece and he’s not giving the Eagles much of anything as a short-term contributor. No reason for him to be blocking playing time for Tarron Jackson.
  • Andre Chachere was first up to replace Maddox in the slot. He had some early success, helping to force a turnover on downs from goal-to-go at the 1-yard line. Chachere then struggled on his next outing and got replaced by Epps once Maddox came out again.

SPECIAL TEAMS

  • No defensive playing time for K’Von Wallace. The 2020 fourth-round pick has quietly been a disappointment.
  • Not pictured: Andre Dillard and Nate Herbig each with four special teams snaps.

DID NOT PLAY

INACTIVE: J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Reid Sinnett, Jack Anderson, Josiah Scott, Tay Gowan, Mac McCain, Kary Vincent Jr.

ACTIVE: Gardner Minshew, Sua Opeta

  • A little curious how the Eagles went out of their way to acquire multiple Day 3 corners in Scott, Gowan, McCain, and KVJ ... and they were all inactive. Philly clearly values their developmental potential but, like, none of them are ready to contribute at all now? At least on special teams? Do they really need to be rostering this many?
  • JJAW was doing some rehab work on the field prior to the game. Seems like he might be back this week. I know you were worried about that.