As expected, the Eagles rested their starters and other key players in this game. This was an opportunity for some roster bubble players to make one case last to make the team. Read on for some observations.
FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHTS
- The Dolphins played their offensive starters, including Tua Tagovailoa. The first play was a play-action deep shot to Tyreek Hill, who blew by K’Von Wallace for the completion. Three players later, Tua hit River Cracraft (former Eagle alert!) for a touchdown. Kary Vincent Jr. trailed Cracraft in coverage. Not exactly the most shocking development to see the Dolphins’ starters have success against the Eagles’ backups.
- Gardner Minshew got the start against some of the Dolphins’ starting defense (notably no Xavier Howard).
- Jalen Reagor, Deon Cain, and Britain Covey got the start at WR.
- Kenneth Gainwell failed to get the ball beyond the marker on a 4th-and-1 run.
- Patrick Johnson had a nice pass rush against Dolphins starting right tackle Austin Jackson to sack Tua for a 7-yard loss. The Eagles’ backups held the Dolphins’ starters to a field goal on Miami’s second drive.
- Jason Huntley dropped a third down pass that was thrown behind him (but still catchable) to bring up an Eagles punt. Still believe he’s the Eagles’ best KR option but disappointing summer as an offensive player.
- The Dolphins brought their starting offense back in for a third drive.
- JaCoby Stevens with a bad missed tackle. And then Jaquiski Tartt failed to wrap up Myles Gaskin cleanly, allowing the Dolphins RB to pick up some extra yards.
- K’Von Wallace missed multiple tackles. He’s probably going to make the team ... but there’s been more bad than good this summer.
- Minshew’s night ended late in the first quarter with Reid Sinnett replacing him.
- Grant Calcaterra made his first NFL catch for 24 yards. Gonna make the roster along with Dallas Goedert and Jack Stoll.
- Sinnett sailed a pass to a crossing Calcaterra despite having a clean pocket. Calcaterra had a lot of open field in front of him. Sinnett then almost threw a pick right to Nik Needham.
- Reagor remained on the sideline with Cain still playing. Not good if you were hoping for the Eagles to keep Cain over Reagor.
- Reed Blankenship had a nice form tackle for a big hit on a Dolphins ball carrier. I don’t know that Blankenship is in danger of being claimed if cut but he’s done basically everything he’s could to actually make the team.
- Sinnett threw a bad short interception on a play where he apparently thought Calcaterra would stay in place. Sinnett then failed to knock the Dolphins defender out of bounds to prevent a pick six.
- Sinnett overthrew Kennedy Brooks.
- Devon Allen did a really nice job as a gunner on punt coverage to make a tackle on the returner. He’s earned a practice squad spot.
- Blankenship prevented a touchdown on a catch-and-run that burned an Eagles blitz by ranging over and knocking the Dolphins ball-carrier out of bounds. Not great to give up 28 yards on a 3rd-and-7 but could’ve been worse if not for that effort.
SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHTS
- John Hightower made a leaping grab along the left sideline.
- Cain got called for offensive pass interference ... before dropping the pass anyway. Cain will be back on the practice squad but he’s not making the team.
- Devon Allen closing in on the Dolphins’ punt returner may have caused the returner to hear footsteps and muff the return. At the very least, Allen hit the returner hard to make sure he couldn’t be the one to recover it. The Eagles recovered to set up in scoring position. Good night for Allen.
- Calcaterra got hit with a holding penalty that wiped out a touchdown run.
- Tay Gowan got called for pass interference on a Dolphins deep ball. Gowan has done enough to make the practice squad but he’s on the outside looking in for a roster spot.
- Pressure from Kyron Johnson forced Dolphins QB Skylar Thompson into a throwaway.
- Davion Taylor had a chance to make a pick but Dolphins TE Hunter Long got in front of him to make a TD catch.
- Sinnett held the ball forever to take a sack that brought up a 4th-and-19.
- Cain dropped another pass. Too many tonight.
- Sinnett got strip-sacked and Cameron Tom recovered. Be honest: did you know the Eagles had a player named Cameron Tom on their roster?
- Carson Strong entered the game early in the fourth quarter.
- Huntley broke off a 67-yard touchdown run, managing to stay in bounds along the left sideline. Huntley’s hasn’t had a good summer but he’s got some juice. Maybe enough to stick around on the practice squad.
- Davion Taylor pancaked a Dolphins third string offensive lineman and then made a tackle. Nice to see him shed a tackle and make a play.
- UDFA cornerback Mario Goodrich had a really bad whiff on a Lynn Bowden catch-and-run for a touchdown. Taylor loafing on that score didn’t help the defense.
- Kennedy Brooks had a nice ST tackle on punt coverage.
Gardner Minshew: 6/9 (66.7%), 48 yards (5.3 average), 0 TD, 0 INT, 79.9 passer rating
Don’t think Minshew needed to play in this game. But he did. And he was relatively fine going up against Miami’s starting defense. Wasn’t good, wasn’t bad.
Reid Sinnett: 12/22 (54.5), 104 yards (4.7 average), 0 TD, 1 INT, 48.3 passer rating
Sinnett played his way out of a roster spot. Accuracy issues, bad decision-making, holding the ball for too long. All problems on Saturday night.
Reid Sinnett finishes the preseason 25/48 (52.1%), 254 yards (5.3 y/a), 2 TD, 1 INT, 72.7 passer rating.#Eagles— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) August 28, 2022
Carson Strong: 1/3 (33.3%), 6 yards (2.0 average), 0 TD, 0 INT, 42.4 passer rating
Strong finished the preseason with just four total pass attempts over three games. A conspiracy theorist could suggest the Eagles were hiding him ... but I think it’s more about them not trusting him to throw the football.
- DT Kobe Smith got banged up late in the second quarter.
- CB Kary Vincent Jr. went down with a non-contact injury in the third quarter. He walked off the field to the locker room on his own power.
THE PRESEASON IS OVER!
The Eagles have off this weekend but roster cuts are right around the corner. NFL teams must trim down from 80 to 53 players before 4:00 PM Eastern on Tuesday, August 30.
As always, stay tuned to BGN for complete coverage.