Well... that was disappointing. I found that a thoroughly frustrating watch. It seems quite clear to me that the Eagles are a better team than the Giants but a few too many mistakes cost them this one. Let’s just get into it.
Sirianni clearly came out and wanted to throw the ball more this week. The Giants were stacking the box and I am guessing he wanted to catch them off guard a bit. However, Jalen Hurts didn’t play well, and the Eagles quickly focused on the running the ball a lot after the first two drives. I am going to break this down slightly differently this week and focus on the passing game first and then do the running game after, rather than doing it in the order of how each play happened. Let me know if you prefer this way or not!
Anyway, let’s start with a positive, shall we? This is a hell of a throw. Great job by Hurts/Quez Watkins being on the same page and knowing what to do if the deep shot isn’t on. Love this play a lot.
Eagles All22 offense thread vs. Giants. Eagles were desperate all game to hit this deep over route v man cov (this was open but pressure forced Hurts to move on) but this is a beauty of a play from Hurts & Watkins. Excellent ball and hell of a catch + route awareness to come back pic.twitter.com/1isUmbHAMu— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Let’s defend Hurts again early on! I will not blame him for this pick. I don’t even really blame Watkins as I think it should be DPI but as a wide receiver you must keep playing even if you think it should be a flag. Hopefully, he learns from this.
INT is not on Hurts. Eagles trying to hit this over again on a shallow cross concept (I think?) but safety takes Smith and LB doubles on Goedert. Hurts correctly eliminates Smith and gets backside to the dig which should be open. I think DPI here causes Watkins to stop. pic.twitter.com/aPSwVuNpCU— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Despite just defending him early, Hurts did not have a good game. I didn’t think he saw the field clearly at all and I don’t even think the Giants were doing too much complicated stuff on the back end either. He just did not process the field well at all which is pretty concerning. Here is a good example of this, this throw is never ever on against this coverage. He got stuck on his 1st read far too often in this one.
Hurts had some weird reads in this game. Not sure what he was seeing at times. Corner/stop 2man concept with Watkins/Smith. Vs Quarters Smith is open on the comeback. Hurts sees it, doesn't throw it, then launches it to Watkins who is never ever coming open against this coverage pic.twitter.com/9ComiFEiyU— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Again, I want to see him process things quicker and eliminate what is not there based on the coverage after the snap. This throw is never on so move on from Dallas Goedert rather than staring him down and trying to force it to him.
Tough play to make with pressure on his left but if Hurts elimates Goedert quicker here (out route v corner with outside leverage is bad) & gets to his next read Reagor is wide open for an easy throw and catch. Stays too focused on his 1st option and tries to force it to him. pic.twitter.com/14tJd2GnuO— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
This is one of the worst throws I’ve seen from him because it highlights his two main weaknesses - arm talent and processing speed. He just sees single high and throws the vertical route without really doing anything else. He needs to move the safety here and them come back to Jalen Reagor who would have had a chance of being open against single high. However, the ball just dies in the air. There is no juice on this one and he steps into it which is pretty worrying. Not sure how much you can coach that.
This is a bad pick. He sees single high and chucks it to the vertical route. No effort at all to move safety with his eyes so he reads it all the way. He has the time to get backside (Watkins wide open) as protection is great. Has room to step into throw and the ball still dies. pic.twitter.com/BYSiEgw7Xd— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Just for balance, as I mentioned earlier, not everything was bad! This is a tremendous throw and if Reagor catches it then some people are probably having very different conversations about the Eagles this week.
On the other hand... is this Hurts best throw of his career?! Fading back vs the blitz, launches it 45 yards and drops it into a bucket. Sadly, the bucket was owned by Reagor so it was not caught. pic.twitter.com/XOZjMUJGc0— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
The final few plays are bad for Hurts as well. He was lucky this was not picked. He’s far too late to this throw and just stares it down once again. The Giants secondary probably couldn’t believe how easy it was at times.
Ooof you cant throw this. Nobody is open (not a huge fan of design - or how Smith is used) but you cannot throw a backside dig late vs cover 2 and stare it down. If you make this throw you have to launch it as he makes his break. Can't stare it down, easy money for safety. pic.twitter.com/CTZQpty1Wi— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
The last play has been debated a ton so I’m not going to add too much. Personally, I think the ball should be thrown to DeVonta Smith. It is a tough throw though and I am not going to completely kill Hurts for not making it. He does recover well and makes an awesome play outside of structure to Reagor who clearly should be catching this.
The last play. I get the point about spacing & routes not perfect but this ball is designed to go to Smith & safety is held by the deep dig so this throw is on. This is a really hard throw but there is space to make it. However! Then Hurts does a great job and makes a great throw pic.twitter.com/6iJdfl3Uq5— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Overall, I didn’t think this was dramatically different from most Hurts games. He is normally slow to process, and we know he doesn’t have great arm talent. He was electric in the run game still and came up clutch once or twice at the end. I haven’t changed my opinion since last week (when I said I still don’t think he will be a franchise quarterback) but I do believe you can win with him.. However, he cannot make the mistakes he made in this game moving forward. He isn’t talented enough to have those kinds of errors.
Onto the running game, my goodness did the Eagles run the ball well this game. Maliata, Dickerson and Johnson were absolute monsters in this one. I bet they cannot believe that we lost this one. Jordan Mailata and Landon Dickerson are so well-coached for young players, I am excited to watch how good they can become.
Some of Maliata & Dickersons blocks in this game are beautiful. They looked SO well coached. Perfect double team here & great job by Dickerson to get to the LB and move him. These 2 are going to be the foundation of the Eagles run game for years to come. pic.twitter.com/wBAn4c5okE— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
The Giants could not stop this counter run. The Eagles ran it on them all game and they never really had an answer. I don’t really have much to add on the run game as it was the same as what we have seen the past couple of weeks but the Eagles absolutely dominated the Giants upfront. This was an elite performance by the offensive line.
Eagles ran the hell out of this counter run with Hurts and some of the holes were absurd. Watch this play 3x times (at least) and just watch Dickerson, Maliata & Johnson. This is near perfection. Maliata & Dickerson look so athletic for 2 huge guys. This is awesome. pic.twitter.com/wqJOLskpFF— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
This is literally 2 plays later lol. Johnson, Dickerson & Maliata are unbelievably good on this counter run. My goodness. pic.twitter.com/nhLEdCwC8D— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Once again, I thought the Eagles played a solid game on defense. There was less creativity than there has been in recent weeks but there was a good blend of single high and 2 high as well as some man (with a small bit of press at times) and zone coverage.
I’ve been highlighting him in recent weeks, but I thought Fletcher Cox was good once again this game. He has played well the past month and certainly has not declined as much as I thought earlier on in the season. He’s not done yet!
Eagles All22 Defense thread vs Giants. Not been his best year but Cox has been really good the past few weeks and how many DTs can line up at EDGE and do this?! Eagles playing straight up press man cover 1 on 3rd down too btw! Becoming a common theme the past few weeks. pic.twitter.com/35udEVlwgI— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
No one player to mention here, I just thought all game the Eagles played pretty good coverage on the back-end. No real coverage busts at all. No plays where I wonder what someone is doing. I think that speaks to good coaching overall.
Continue to be impressed with Eagles coverage in recent weeks. Good zone discipline, tight to defenders. Slay doesn't bite on TE seam & Singleton is aware of WR in his area. pic.twitter.com/nldAFDKyOs— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Speaking of good coaching, Milton Williams’ development is really impressive. This was a player that some saw as an EDGE (I didn’t!) as he was quite undersized to play in the middle. He does not look light or undersized right now! He made a couple of impressive plays this week and I think he has the chance to be really good if he can develop some pass rushing moves during the offseason.
Guess who continues to flash...Milton Williams! Good combination of quickness and power to shed the block and makes the tackle too. pic.twitter.com/7bzyO9DAre— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Milton Williams... this dude is already a force in the run game. If he can work on rushing the quarterback he's going to be very, very good. Really excited to watch him grow. pic.twitter.com/LxKdqn4Nj2— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
In recent weeks I’ve spoken a lot about the Eagles being creative with their blitzes on 3rd down. Well, guess what? The other teams coaches get paid too! Sometimes these blitzes fail and I am fine with that. I’m still happy we are being aggressive more. Give me a defense failing like this rather than giving up 10 yards of cushion on each play.
Eagles continue to be aggressive on 3rd down with blitzes. Sometimes you lose! It happens. Good job using bunch formation by Giants and using short drag route. Probably anticipated pressure. Impossible cover for McLeod here pic.twitter.com/G7WXRgOl6a— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Another sign of a well-coached team who are motivated is how quickly they swarm to the ball carrier. This doesn’t appear in the stats sheet, but I never get the feeling watching the Eagles that they are soft or passive anymore. This is a physical game and tough defenses are usually successful. The Eagles have some physical players, and the defense plays hard overall. I thought both Edwards and Singleton played really aggressive, good solid football this week.
I think one of my favorite things about good defenses is how they swarm to the ball. High effort, high energy, consistently. Eagles D have played like this for a few weeks now! Look at the number around the ball carrier. pic.twitter.com/25SIOXYLe7— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Little minor scheme point, the Eagles have been matching base personnel with nickel (if you count Avery as an EDGE) with a 5 man front and they did a really good job shutting down the Giants rushing attack.
Eagles in recent weeks have been willing to play nickel against base personnel with this 5 man front. I thought the defense as a whole did a really good job with their run fits this game. Avery made some plays that impressed me throughout actually too! pic.twitter.com/NYeq5TUP2Y— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
Avonte Maddox and Darius Slay have been exceptional the past month. Maddox gets beat at times but he is so physical for a smaller corner. Slay is just balling in coverage. In zone he never bites and keeps to the assignment and in man he is shutting down players frequently. These two have really impressed me.
I highlight them every week but Maddox and Slay continue to play great defense. Maddox in particular was really good in man coverage this game. He's very physical with WRs but rarely crosses the line. Has a good balance of technique, quickness and aggression. pic.twitter.com/uRPethvYxp— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) November 30, 2021
That will do for this one... a very frustrating loss. I’m expecting an angry Eagles team to dominate the Jets upfront this week. Fingers crossed!