Early on, it looked like this one had the makings of a shootout. The Eagles started with a strong touchdown drive powered by Dallas Goedert and the Rams responded with one of their own powered by Cooper Kupp.
Late in the first half, it looked like LA might take control of the game. They scored a touchdown to go up four points with an opportunity to add more points by getting the ball first in the second half.
But the Eagles were able to put together an astounding 4-play, 75-yard touchdown drive with just 32 seconds on the clock to take a lead going into half. One huge catch by A.J. Brown and two drawn penalties by him made that quick score possible.
From there, the Eagles were able to dominate the Rams’ defense by going on long drives. It was just frustrating to see them only come up with field goals instead of touchdowns, continuing the red zone issues that have plagued this team.
Sean Desai’s defense also settled in and shut the Rams out in the second half. They found an answer to limiting.
All told, this was an encouraging win by the Eagles. It wasn’t perfect; they clearly still have room to improve. And that’s been a common refrain to this point in the season. But this was a little different in that it felt like the Eagles were closer to really breaking though.
Aside from one bad interception on a miscommunication (?), Jalen Hurts was pretty great. A.J. Brown is still very much unguardable and the Eagles remembered they have Dallas Goedert on the team.
Next up is a Week 6 road game against the New York Jets ... a team that the Eagles have NEVER been defeated by.
Read on for a recap and stay tuned for BGN’s postgame coverage, including the BGN Radio postgame show.
- The Rams won the coin toss and elected to defer, putting the Eagles’ offense on the field first. Jalen Hurts’ first pass went to Quez Watkins, back starting over Olamide Zaccheaus at WR3, on a bubble screen for five yards. Two straight targets to Dallas Goedert resulted in 31 yards. Good job by the Eagles’ coaching staff looking to get the tight end going early after an unusually slow start to the season. Good job by Goedert to run through tackles for additional YAC. The Eagles got to 1st-and-goal at the 5-yard line with a nice run on a QB keeper by Hurts. Facing 3rd-and-goal, Hurts hit Goedert on a tight window throw into the end zone. Bang! Strong drive by the offense, going 75 yards on 12 plays to set the tone. That looked like the 2022 Eagles. EAGLES 7, RAMS 0.
- Mario Goodrich got the start as the Eagles’ nickel cornerback with James Bradberry remaining on the outside (so, no Josh Jobe on the field). Matthew Stafford targeted Cooper Kupp, who was Goodrich’s assignment, for an easy first down. Then Stafford found Kupp with Nicholas Morrow trailing in coverage. Certainly mismatches in the Rams’ favor. Another one? Stafford to Kupp for another first down with Eli Ricks (!) coming on in place of Goodrich. Facing 3rd-and-1, Stafford’s pass for Puka Nacua was just a tad too far out in front and incomplete. Sean McVay went for it (!) on 4th-and-1 and Stafford’s target to Kupp was ... easily completed. Ricks victimized again this time. The Rams got to 3rd-and-goal from the 3-yard line and Stafford hit Tutu Atwell (not Kupp!) for the score. Not much resistance from the Eagles’ defense to allow a 14-play, 75-yard touchdown. EAGLES 7, RAMS 7.
The Eagles are defending Cooper Kupp with Eli Ricks, Mario Goodrich, and Nicholas Morrow.— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) October 8, 2023
In Week 1, Goodrich and Ricks were healthy scratches while Morrow was on the practice squad.
Cooper Kupp 5-56 on the Rams' opening drive. Ugly Eagles defense in the middle of the field. The Rams don't really have deep threats. Challenge them. Way too much off coverage, IMO. The Rams will welcome that all day and kill them underneath.— Jimmy Kempski (@JimmyKempski) October 8, 2023
Mario Goodrich / Eli Ricks split in the slot seems to be Goodrich more on run downs, Ricks more on pass, which suggests #Eagles like the former more as a tackler and the latter more in coverage.— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) October 8, 2023
Like may be too strong of a word.
- D’Andre Swift slipped in the backfield for a loss before a completion to Goedert set up third down. On 3rd-and-5, Hurts found A.J. Brown on a slant (unstoppable) for a conversion.
- A Kenneth Gainwell carry for one yard and Hurts throwing behind DeVonta Smith brought up third down. On 3rd-and-9, Hurts navigated pressure to step up and fight through contact for a first down. Big-time run. Hurts threw a great tight window ball to Brown on a post, who could only get one hand on the ball and bring it in for the catch. Missed opportunity. Facing 3rd-and-10, Hurts had a crossing Watkins open but overthrew him by a bit. Braden Mann came in for the punt that was fair caught at the 9-yard line. Not good to not score points in a game shaping up to be a shootout.
Just a dime from Hurts. Difficult one handed catch for Brown to make. But Hurts could not have thrown this any better. pic.twitter.com/8wXxroYiBh— Patrick (@PhillyPMC) October 8, 2023
- The Eagles put Bradley Roby in the slot to start the Rams’ second drive. A nice open field tackle by Reed Blankenship prevented a screen from turning into a really big gain and instead brought up 3rd-and-1. But the Rams easily converted it with a run up the middle anyway. Stafford randomly missing a throw high brought up another third down. Darius Slay followed Kupp on that snap. On 3rd-and-7, Stafford’s pass was a little high and it bounced off the hands of Nacua. Fortunate break for Philly.
- The Eagles took over at their own 28-yard line after a 20-yard return by Britain Covey. Hurts randomly missed a throw to an open Goedert. Facing 3rd-and-5, Hurts bought time against pressure and eventually hit Gainwell, who leaked downfield after a nice block in pass protection and broke through a tackle. Very nice! I’ve never said a bad thing about Kenny G. Hurts held the ball for a long time again to get sacked to bring up 2nd-and-18. Hurts completing a pass to Swift over the middle brought on third down. On 3rd-and-9, Hurts immediately took off running on a draw up the middle for a first down. The Eagles got to 3rd-and-1 and ... The Brotherly Shove moved the chains. The Eagles got to 3rd-and-2 and ... threw a bubble screen to Quez Watkins, who somehow couldn’t pick up a first down even though he had the blocking in front of him. Bad job by Quez. But also a bad job by the coaching staff to be relying on Quez in such a high-leverage situation. Jake Elliott made the 32-yard field goal attempt. But a big missed opportunity to get seven and potentially run out more clock to limit the Rams’ next drive. EAGLES 10, RAMS 7.
Prior to Week 5:— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) October 8, 2023
Olamide Zaccheaus was up to 69 yards over his last 2 games.
Quez Watkins had 64 yards in his last 9 games combined.
Quez returns from injury against the Rams and the Eagles give him 3 first half targets while DeVonta Smith has 1.
Especially don't love Quez usage in the RZ, btw. Field-stretching ability not factor down there. Zaccheaus has better hands, is a better blocker, and a better runner after the catch. Let him play down there. (I mean, he should be playing more in general, but especially in RZ.)— Jimmy Kempski (@JimmyKempski) October 8, 2023
- Slay trailed Kupp downfield to allow a 39-yard reception into Eagles territory. Jalen Carter picked up a sack to bring him up to 2.5 on the season and put the Rams at 3rd-and-10 with 0:32 remaining in the first half. On third down, Pucua beat James Bradberry down the right sideline for a touchdown. Not even bad coverage, just a really great throw and catch. Quez mistake looking even more costly. EAGLES 10, RAMS 14.
- The Eagles took over at their own 25-yard line with 0:28 on the clock and three timeouts at their disposal. Facing 3rd-and-1, Brown made a one-handed catch in stride to pick up 37 yards ... while also drawing a horse collar tackle penalty for 15 more yards. With the Eagles having the ball at the Rams’ 14-yard line and 0:06 on the clock, Hurts took a shot into the end zone and Brown drew a pass interference penalty to give the Eagles the ball at the 1-yard line. Needing a yard with only 0:02 left, the Eagles ran — what else — The Brotherly Shove ... and it worked yet again! HUGE to go 75 yards and score a TD to take the lead in just 32 seconds. Especially with the Rams getting the ball to start the second half. A.J. Brown is awesome. EAGLES 17, RAMS 14.
I mean come on… that’s just ridiculous! pic.twitter.com/QC8gsMNxXv— Shane Haff (@ShaneHaffNFL) October 8, 2023
Jalen Hurts in the first half: 16/23, 152 yards, 1 TD. 8 rushing attempts, 50 yards, 1 TD— Dave Zangaro (@DZangaroNBCS) October 8, 2023
Jalen Hurts is the first QB in #NFL history to record 30+ rushing TDs in their first 50 career games.— John Gonoude (@john_gonoude) October 8, 2023
Jalen Hurts has now converted on 43 of 46 push sneak attempts since the start of last season including playoffs. That includes 10 of 12 from the 1-yard line.— Tim McManus (@Tim_McManus) October 8, 2023
- Jalen Carter emerged up the middle to violently throw down and sack Stafford (near facemask?) to bring up 2nd-and-26. On 3rd-and-26, the Rams ran the ball and Zach Cunningham was called for a facemask to give LA a fresh set of downs. It was not even a penalty:
Atrocious face mask call by the refs. Pretty clear from the replay that Cunningham grabbed below his face mask on the collar. pic.twitter.com/q3KtYGmnvE— Patrick (@PhillyPMC) October 8, 2023
A very fortunate break for LA. The Rams got to 3rd-and-10 around midfield and the combination of pressure from Josh Sweat and miscommunication by Stafford/Kupp helped to force a punt. The refs threw a flag for intentional grounding on the play.
- 53-yard punt by the Rams (really nice job by Ethan Evans) pinned the Eagles at their own 6-yard line. Facing 3rd-and-2, the Eagles took their first timeout to avoid a delay of game penalty. Hurts found Swift open beyond the marker along the left sideline for a relatively easy-looking conversion. Shot play: Hurts floated a pass to Goedert, who was being covered by a dude wearing No. 97 (not a mismatch in the Rams’ favor!), for a 49-yard catch-and-run. Then Hurts found Goedert again to put the Eagles in the red zone. Just a monster game by the tight end. Hurts and Brown appeared to not be on the same page with the QB throwing a ball that looked way underthrown and got picked off by a great sideline catch from Ahkello Witherspoon to take away the back shoulder completion. Pretty disappointing end to a very promising drive. Nick Sirianni gave Hurts an earful on the sideline after that play.
Eagles love to throw that A.J. Brown front pylon ball to his back shoulder and let him out physical the CB. Great vet play by Witherspoon to know that ball is coming to the backshoulder and just undercut the route. Adjustment off of the 1H DPI. https://t.co/07cRiJamiZ— Benjamin Solak (@BenjaminSolak) October 8, 2023
- The Rams took over at their own 20-yard line. Stafford threw an interception of his own! Except he didn’t because Morrow bobbled the pass that was tipped by Bradberry. Ugh. Another big missed opportunity. Facing 3rd-and-10 from just beyond midfield, the Rams went with a screen ... where Kupp got stripped by Josh Sweat! But Kupp was somehow able to get back on the ball when there were so many more Eagles defenders around. Morrow was right there and couldn’t get possession. Good to get the stop but a big missed opportunity for field position purposes.
Great job by Josh Sweat sniffing out the screen and punching the ball out. Unfortunate the Eagles couldn’t recover it. It costs them 43 yards of field position. pic.twitter.com/JkAwB2JteM— Shane Haff (@ShaneHaffNFL) October 8, 2023
- DeVonta Smith’s first catch of the day (with four minutes remaining in the third quarter) set up a 3rd-and-1 Brotherly Shove for another first down. Facing 3rd-and-7, Hurts took off running and was able to juke a defender to get beyond the marker and then some. GREAT run. Hurts then hit Brown over the middle for another first down.
- Facing 3rd-and-2, the Eagles went with high-leverage Gainwell and it actually worked out. Facing 3rd-and-7, Hurts pass to DeVonta along the right sideline was broken up. The broadcast showed Quez was wide open in the end zone but Hurts couldn’t find him. Also hard to blame the QB for not totally trusting him, but, still. Sirianni should’ve went for the touchdown but he settled for the short field goal to only go to six. Tough to get just three points from their previous drive that went 75 yards and this one that went 83 . EAGLES 20, RAMS 14.
Not a single defender in the same zip code as Quez Watkins…— Kendall Beck (@KBeckEagles) October 8, 2023
Jalen Hurts can’t miss this… pic.twitter.com/AltwjBaFo6
- Stafford threw a heater that missed Atwell and prevented the Eagles from giving up a big play touchdown. Whew. The Eagles gave up Kupp’s first catch of the second half to bring up third down. Facing 3rd-and-5, Stafford’s throw to Kupp was incompletion after the two weren’t on the same page once again.
- Covey’s 15-yard return allowed the Eagles to start at their own 20-yard line; another good contribution by the PR. The Eagles took over with 9:55 left in the game. Ideally, a scenario to go on a long drive like they did late against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Hurts had all day to throw to an open Brown for a 36-yard gain into Rams territory. Facing 3rd-and-4, the Eagles lined up but only had 10 men on the field, which prompted Philly’s second timeout with 7:08 left in the game. Hurts then handed off the Swift on the option and the running back took advantage of a big block by Dallas Goedert to move the chains into the red zone. The Eagles then got hit with a delay of game penalty to get knocked out of the end zone. Not the first time they’ve had issues with getting the snap off. A nice run by Swift and an illegal hands to the face penalty on the Rams gave Philly 1st-and-goal slightly ahead of the 10-yard line. Two runs brought up 3rd-and-goal from the 8-yard line and the Eagles used their final timeout to discuss their third down play. Hurts took a designed run that went for no gain. The Eagles were happy to play for the field goal instead of trying harder for the touchdown. Too conservative. Disappointing to only get six points from three long second half drives. EAGLES 23, RAMS 14.
- Zach Cunningham and Milton Williams forced Stafford into a throwaway to bring up third down. Facing 3rd-and-10, Haason Reddick was able to sack the Rams’ scrambling quarterback from behind to bring up fourth down. Clutch play. Facing 4th-and-12, Reddick came flying in to get Stafford for the turnover on downs! Back-to-back sacks in the clutch!
- The Eagles took over at the Rams’ 28-yard line with 2:46 on the clock. The Eagles got to 3rd-and-1 while forcing the Rams to take two timeouts. Another Brotherly Shove, another first down to make the Rams use their final timeout. A Gainwell run got the game to the two-minute warning. Facing 3rd-and-3, the Eagles ran two straight Brotherly Shoves. They were stopped short for a turnover on downs.
- The Rams took over at their own 8-yard line down 12 with 1:01 left and zero timeouts. The Rams picked up two meaningless first downs to bring up the end of the game.
FINAL SCORE: EAGLES WIN, 23 to 14
EAGLES INJURY NEWS
- Nothing to note! That’s good.