What a fantastic win! I enjoyed this Philadelphia Eagles vs. Miami Dolphins matchup a lot, so let’s get straight to it. Just a quick reminder that I am joining the podcast game, and if you want even more analysis on this game (as well as my British accent) then please check out the ‘On the Shane Page’ podcast!
I won’t talk much about the run game in this one, but I wanted to show this clip to highlight how the Eagles can adapt to different defenses. The Eagles haven’t run a lot of outside zone this year, but they used it frequently early on and had some success with it. I think we will see the Eagles use this pin/pull outside zone run more regularly as the year goes on because it feels like it always works! There are some great blocks here, especially by Jason Kelce who is still elite in space.
Eagles Offense All22 vs. Dolphins. 1) One thing I love about Eagles run game is the variety of concepts. This week the Eagles had success with outside zone runs. I love the pin/pull outside zone with Kelce on the move so much. Lane and Goedert are fantastic here too! pic.twitter.com/dozD40DxiO— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
To be a top NFL quarterback, you have to be able to eliminate what isn’t there and get through your progressions quickly. This is an excellent example of the progress that Jalen Hurts has made as a pocket quarterback. Hurts is reading the right-hand side but realizes it won’t come open so gets to his backside read (backside dig). He feels that pressure is coming and he isn’t going to have time to get to the dig, so it gets it out quickly to his running back. This is just really good processing and shows the progress that he has made as a quarterback.
2) I can't express my enjoyment over this check down. This is where Hurts has made huge strides as a pocket passer. Look how quickly he eliminates the initial 2 man concept, realizes he won't get to the backside dig before pressure comes, and checks it down. This is fast… pic.twitter.com/vsUUimco7q— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
This play is so cool. At first, I thought it was just a standard Mesh concept against man coverage, which is always brilliant and works perfectly here. However, if you look at the right-hand side, you can also see the Eagles are running a 3-level stretch play and the shallow crossing route by Dallas Goedert ends up as the lowest of the 3 routes breaking to the same side. This is such a cool play from empty as you have the deep go route against clear single-high if you want it, the intermediate route against zone coverage, or the shallow drag route against man coverage. It gives a quarterback answers against any coverage.
3) Eagles had a good feel for the Dolphins coverages in this game and they had success with Mesh against man coverage a few times. This is excellent game planning. The Eagles used empty a lot and this is tough on a defense which is being stretched vertically & horizontally. pic.twitter.com/XNmZ6XvwBy— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
Speaking of concepts that I loved... I love the double post cross concept against a Vic Fangio defense that doesn’t want to get beat over the top. The two post routes are going to drag the deep defenders out of position, and it means you can hit that deep over-route against zone coverage. This is a fantastic call and the offensive line does a great job holding up in pass protection as it is quite a slow-developing play.
4) Eagles love this double post cross concept. Great call against a Fangio defense and I also like using Goedert to run the deep over, as he's outstanding in the intermediate area of the field. This is easy money with fantastic pass protection. pic.twitter.com/KYQilbNcRx— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
The sequencing at the end of the Eagles' first drive had me going a little insane. The Eagles ran read option on 1st down (which is fine) but Hurts didn’t want to take on the defender one-on-one so he just slid. If you aren’t going to ask your quarterback to beat someone one-on-one, then why would you call it on 1st down? And why would you ask that same quarterback to run a draw on 3rd down where he is going to take a shot? This playcall was too obvious and the Eagles need to build off this QB draw from empty. Shane and I spent a long time talking about this on the podcast this week.
5) I already know me & @ShaneHaffNFL are going to talk about this redzone sequence on the first drive on the pod tonight This QB Draw felt so predictable and the Dolphins are prepared for it with a run blitz. The play calling in the redzone on the 1st drive was depressing. pic.twitter.com/pCUA1X3ZrH— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
I thought Hurts had a good game overall, but this was a really bad play. This can’t happen. DeVonta Smith is wide open on the angle route but Hurts has eliminated this route concept already (this is the danger of eliminating what isn’t there too quickly). Smith comes wide open but Hurts has already decided not to throw it. I think he then realizes his mistake and panics and goes into ‘hero ball’ mode, which is never good. However, every quarterback misses throws. I can accept that. What I can’t accept is the fumble from the pocket. He cannot fumble on plays like this and it’s a really bad play. I hope he learns from this one quickly.
6) Hurts was good overall, but this was a bad sack fumble. This is a great 3 man concept and Smith is wide open on the angle/slant route. For some reason, Hurts just doesn't throw it and he ends up holding the ball and then making it even worse by fumbling when sacked. A rare… pic.twitter.com/Nuga6E6GVZ— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
I moaned about the redzone earlier on, so it’s only fair that I point out that I love this play. This is a RSO and Hurts just has to read the linebackers. When he sees the linebacker and EDGE start to crash down on the running ply, he knows he has the screen available to him. The Eagles execute this play perfectly and Goedert walks in after some outstanding blocks by Jordan Mailata and A.J. Brown. Beautiful.
7) I love an RSO (run screen option) in the redzone. This is the perfect call against a blitz. The timing is perfect and I love lining up AJ Brown inside of Goedert to give him an easier blocking angle. Mailata is brilliant in space too. Fantastic stuff! pic.twitter.com/tKAWRBu20t— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
It’s pretty clear from the comments after the game that Hurts has an issue with something. It was pretty clear during the game that he had an issue when I saw him slow up as he ran out of bounds. Despite the injury issue, this is an outstanding play by Hurts and he does a great job picking up the 1st down with his legs.
8) This is the play I noticed something was clearly wrong with Hurts movement. He's still able to escape the pocket, and it's a fantastic scramble, but he slows up at the end. Hopefully it's something that may impact him but he can still play through as he gets better. pic.twitter.com/aRByxGIy9f— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
Hopefully Hurts injury doesn’t linger long-term, but the fact he is still able to make a play like this despite not feeling 100% is a great sign. This is a fantastic play out of structure and I would bet that the Eagles have coached this scramble drill. The concept on the play is known as Crash, which has a corner route and an in-breaking route. The Eagles scored on this concept later on when Hurts hit AJ Brown, but here AJ Brown is unable to get open. However, when Hurts scrambles to the right, you see Goedert come back towards the ball and Brown gets vertical quickly. That stretches the defense and is exactly what you want to do when it’s a scramble drill. This is not just a fluky play, I would bet it’s by design and has been practiced.
9) This was the same drive though... The knee didn't impact him too much! This is a fantastic play by Hurts but I absolutely love how AJ Brown gets open. Being good outside of structure is important and AJ Brown is clearly the best Eagles WR and getting open when the play breaks… pic.twitter.com/TAN8ViAJFh— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
I haven’t seen Hurts get a lot of criticism for this play, but I do think it’s a mistake by him and not just bad luck. It’s obviously bad luck for the ball to get intercepted, but Hurts shouldn’t throw this ball with a defender right in his face. He needs to either side-arm this ball around him or use a pump fake to try and get him out of his way. You can’t just throw it straight into a defender as the risk is too high.
10) What do we think about this? Bad decision by Hurts? Or just a total fluke? I said last year the issue I have with condensed splits is that it's easy to blitz the corner and that's why the Dolphins do here. I think the Dolphins play call is perfect for this throw, but I want… pic.twitter.com/CnryHFBvYU— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
Add this to the list of passing concepts that I enjoyed in this game. The Eagles were throwing lots of good stuff out there this week. If you missed the article a few weeks ago, here is the clip I posted of Heat.
11) The pass pro here is as good as it gets. It's so good, I assume the Rams rushers must be told to contain Hurts here or this is embarrassing for them. Donald gets totally stonewalled by Opeta/Kelce again! This is HEAT (per @SyedSchemes) & it's a sit/curl by Smith and AJB runs… pic.twitter.com/VXkUjtvZYw— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 9, 2023
I enjoyed this concept as it’s pretty much the same but Smith breaks it towards the sideline. Hurts does an excellent job navigating the pocket too and it’s a great play all around.
11) Also love this concept! It's a variation of Heat which the Eagles ran a couple of weeks ago. It looks like a classic post/cross but this time Smith breaks towards the sideline. It's a slow developing play and Hurts navigates the pocket to buy time really well. pic.twitter.com/AH79yJzBaI— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
I have to end with this play this week because AJ Brown is playing out of his mind right now. He is currently playing as well as any receiver in the league. He can win in so many different ways and this is just an elite play to close out the win for the Eagles. We have also gotten used to these throws by Jalen Hurts, but it’s an outstanding throw. He puts these deep balls on the money time and time again and the connection he has with AJ Brown is beautiful to watch. I absolutely love this play as the Eagles were really patient in this game, due to Fangio not wanting to get beat over the top, but when they had a chance to take the deep shot they took it.
12) We have to end with this one. How good is this? It's a simple stop and go by AJ Brown and Hurts puts it on the money despite pressure due a pretty terrible block by Gainwell. This is just a fantastic throw and catch. This is not at all critical of Smith, but look at the… pic.twitter.com/PvOpbYY4NW— Jonny Page (@JonnyPage9) October 25, 2023
There are always a few bad plays, but I think it’s got to the point where I am nitpicking because the offense is just consistently good. I loved this game and it felt like the Eagles dominated another really good team. This offense is just fun to watch and I’m enjoying the strides the offense is making under Brian Johnson as the season progresses. There are obvious areas that the offense can improve, but I really enjoyed the passing concepts in this game and the different ways that the Eagles could beat the Dolphins’ defense.