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Eagles News: Nick Sirianni has overseen a historic meltdown

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/1/24.

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Arizona Cardinals v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

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Eagles’ historic meltdown raises questions about Nick Sirianni’s leadership - NBCSP
Collapses like this don’t happen. They can’t happen. But three times since 1960 they have happened. Sirianni has overseen a historic meltdown. A No. 1 seed, a division title were both within the Eagles’ reach if they could have just protected a couple 4th-quarter leads. And now they’re facing the likely prospect of life as a road wild-card team and the likelihood that they’ll become the first team since those 1986 Jets to open a season 10-1 or better and not win their division. Barring an improbable postseason run – and how are you going to beat good teams on the road when you can’t beat a 3-12 West Coast team at home after leading by 15 at halftime – this will go down as one of the most disappointing seasons in Eagles history. The Eagles, a team that nearly won a Super Bowl in February, that was 10-1 a month ago, that was in control of the No. 1 seed in the NFC just three weeks ago, now finds itself desperate for answers after yet another mind-boggling team-wide debacle. And Sirianni’s utter inability to find any way to stop the bleeding week after week is alarming. So far, he’s had no answers. None. Just the same old cliches about staying together and working harder.

NFL Playoff Picture: Eagles’ loss means they’re likely the No. 5 seed - BGN
The Eagles can still win the division. But they’ll need to beat the Giants (can’t say it’s a guarantee) AND they’ll need the Washington Commanders to beat the Dallas Cowboys. The combined odds of those two outcomes happening is +859 on DraftKings Sportsbook. You can place a $100 wager to profit $859. In other words, it’s unlikely to happen.

BGN Instant Reaction Show - Week 17: Eagles lose to Jonathan Gannon’s Cardinals, 35-31 - BGN Radio
That was pathetic. Jess Taylor, Shane Haff and Chris Deibler share their frustrations immediately following the Eagles embarrassing loss to the Cardinals.

The 12 worst ‘no-show’ Eagles losses of the last 25 years - PhillyVoice
Week 17, 2023: Cardinals at Eagles, 35-31: Worst defensive performance in recent memory. And finally, there was yesterday, when the 3-12 Cardinals had 15 more first downs, 174 more yards, they ran 25 more plays, they held the ball for for almost 20 more minutes of game clock, they didn’t punt, and they scored touchdowns on all four of their second half possessions.

Gannoned - Iggles Blitz
Nick Sirianni explained that the QB runs had a chance to work based on the defensive fronts Arizona was showing. Unfortunately the runs didn’t work. The screen was an attempt to get into better FG position. It sure would have been nice to throw the ball to AJ or DeVonta or Goedert and let your stars make a play. The Eagles went conservative and it backfired. The Eagles now need luck to win the division and host a playoff game. There was a time when this team was 10-1 and in position to be the number one seed in the NFC. Now they might be a wild card team. I wrote recently that the Eagles did not have a realistic shot to win the Super Bowl this year. This team was too flawed. Now this team might get bounced in the opening weekend. The whole organization deserves a lot of scrutiny after this debacle. The coaches will focus on the game tape, looking to see what can be fixed. Sirianni can’t think long term right now. He’s got to focus on beating the Giants next week and whatever comes after that. When the season is finally over, he’s going to face a lot of tough questions from Jeff Lurie and Howie Roseman, as well as every Eagles fan he runs into.

Jonathan Gannon ‘guts’ the Eagles and outcoaches the free-falling Nick Sirianni - Inquirer
One coach knew when to gamble with an onside kick. The other coach had no clue it was coming.One coach had all his timeouts before he needed them. The other coach had carelessly burned his first two. One coach’s team had nothing left to play for but pride. The other coach’s team had everything still on the line.One coach was blamed for losing Super Bowl LVII. The other coach has received far less criticism than his coordinators this season. Until possibly now.Jonathan Gannon outsmarted, outmaneuvered, and maybe even outed Nick Sirianni as ill-equipped to take the Eagles back to the Super Bowl. Upon his return to Philadelphia, Gannon’s Arizona Cardinals knocked off Sirianni’s team, 35-31, on Sunday before a shocked and hostile crowd at Lincoln Financial Field.

Nick Sirianni says Eagles need to ‘get things fixed ... fast’ - ESPN
The locker room had mixed reaction to the loss. Some players, like Graham, tried to put an optimistic spin on things. Receiver A.J. Brown declined to speak to reporters for a second straight week, believing there is “nothing to say.” Tackle Jordan Mailata did not take kindly to a question about whether Sirianni still had the backing of the players. “Yes. Why would you say that?” Mailata said. “It’s the NFL. It’s any given Sunday. We got our teeth punched in today because we went out there and we thought they were going to be a pushover? No. “It’s the NFL. ... No, Nick has not lost the locker room. I’m going to end it there.” The Eagles have just one more game — a Week 18 trip to MetLife Stadium to face the Giants — to try and build some positive momentum before elimination games begin.

2023 NFL season, Week 17: What We Learned from Sunday’s games - NFL.com
The Eagles’ second half struggles continue. After being held to under 20 points in three out of the last four games, Jalen Hurts and Philadelphia’s offense appeared to have found their footing to start the game. Hurts distributed the ball to A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, Dallas Goedert and Julio Jones, who had two TDs in the first half. On the other side of the ball, Eagles cornerback Sydney Brown returned a Murray pass for a 99-yard pick-six to give the Eagles a 14-3 lead in the second quarter. Hurts finished the half throwing 11 of 13 for 114 yards and two touchdowns. With a 21-6 lead heading into the locker room, Nick Sirianni’s squad didn’t keep its foot on the pedal. The offense looked flat in the second half, while the defense let Murray extend plays with his legs and carve up Philly’s defense. Since taking over the defensive play-calling duties, Matt Patricia’s Eagles allowed a season-high 29 points in the second half, per NFL Research.

NFL Week 17 Takeaways: 49ers Moved on Quickly From Ravens Loss - SI
It’s hard to explain or comprehend the Eagles’ collapse. But one thing seems certain, and that’s that if Dallas wins the division next week (all the Cowboys have to do is beat the Commanders), and Philly bows out in the first round of the playoffs, significant changes will come on defense. I’d think Matt Patricia, who’s running a scheme that’s not his (and, as such, makes it tougher for him to find answers on the fly) would get consideration to oversee that change next year. But I’d expect Philly to look outside the organization, too. And it’ll be interesting to see whether Howie Roseman’s love for Vic Fangio’s scheme remains, after Sean Desai’s version of it failed.

Week 17: Lamar Jackson, Ravens in league of their own; was Taylor Decker eligible? - FMIA
I’m not sure the Eagles are fixable this year. I watched a good chunk of Arizona’s 35-31 win over Philadelphia Sunday, and what amazed me is something pretty simple—the Eagles defense could not get off the field. Three things I noted: The Cardinals had the ball all day. Imagine a team that hadn’t scored 30 all season scoring 35 against the conference champs who were playing to win the division with a prayer at home field—and holding the ball for 39 minutes and 39 seconds, some 66 percent of the game. The Eagles, with Haason Reddick and an infusion of quality youth up front, are 24th in sack rate in the league and have given up 34 touchdown passes. That’s stunning. We all thought Darius Slay and James Bradberry could hold up another year, but they can’t; Bradberry’s tied for league-worst with nine TD passes allowed, per PFF. A sign of any bad defense is a poor third-down conversion rate, which takes into account pass-rush, whether linebackers can make plays sideline to sideline and pass-defense. The Eagles are 30th in the league, allowing 46.4 percent conversion on third downs. That’ll drag down any team. Barring a surprise Dallas loss in Washington Sunday, Philly will open the playoffs at the NFC South champ. Maybe they’ll find a way to win because they’ve got proud players. But that looked like a beaten team Sunday, losing to the previously 3-12 Cardinals.

Inside the worst Eagles loss in a decade: What went wrong vs. Cardinals and what it means for the playoffs - PHLY
And if that happens? One would expect changes in Philadelphia, both with members of the coaching staff and on the roster. It’s still premature to speculate what those changes would be, but it’s hard to imagine Jeffrey Lurie would accept a “run it back” approach on the staff if there proves to be a late-season collapse. With the roster, the Eagles already saw in 2018 what happens when the roster gets older quickly. They made some short-term moves this season, although they have far more young talent than they had after the Super Bowl in 2017. But there are certain positions for which they’ll need to take a closer look at roster construction, and there could be retirements from some of the great players in Eagles history.

Eagles appear to be falling apart after home collapse to Cardinals - The Athletic
Patricia’s heavier defensive fronts have required edge rushers Haason Reddick, Nolan Smith and Brandon Graham to sometimes play off the ball. Patricia said last week he favors the option because it slows an opposing offense’s “process down a little bit,” and the Eagles can “catch them in a bad mismatch.” But Conner, who rushed for 128 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries, gained 10 yards against a first-quarter look in which Reddick played off the ball. Two plays later, Murray scrambled for a 6-yard gain against the same look. The Eagles’ defense also found itself in a mismatch when deploying edge rushers as off-the-ball linebackers. On the first drive of the second half, on second-and-goal at the Eagles’ 6, Patricia used Smith as an off-ball linebacker. Still, Murray lobbed a 6-yard touchdown to running back Michael Carter, who snagged the score one-handed while being covered by linebacker Nicholas Morrow.

Spadaro: What happened against the Cardinals? Here are 10 takeaways from the loss - PE.com
1. Arizona had possession of the football eight times and scored four touchdowns – all in the second half – and a field goal, rolled up 449 total net yards, including 221 rushing yards (5.5 yards per carry), converted 5 of 10 third downs and both fourth downs, and had the football for 39 minutes, 39 seconds. Nothing fancy – running back James Conner ran north/south and gashed the Eagles for 128 yards on 28 carries. Michael Carter gained 61 yards on 7 carries. When the game was on the line, with the Eagles ahead 31-28 and 2 minutes, 28 seconds remaining in the game, the Cardinals drove 70 yards in 7 plays and took the lead for the first time since an opening-drive field goal pushed the Cardinals ahead, 3-0. The Cardinals didn’t punt the entire afternoon.

6 Winners and Losers from Arizona Cardinals vs. the Philadelphia Eagles - Revenge Of The Birds
#1. LOSER - Nick Sirianni and Matt Patricia. Man...The Eagles really have self-destructed. They’ve lost 4 of their last 5, changed to a defensive coordinator who can’t stop anyone and the only team they’ve managed to beat is the New York Giants who benched their QB part-way through this season for Tyrod Taylor. Sirianni in the Super Bowl chose to punt on 4th down in the Super Bowl rather than be aggressive and lost the Super Bowl to the Chiefs last year.

Dallas Cowboys control NFC East destiny after Philadelphia Eagles loss in Week 17 - Blogging The Boys
The #2 seed is critical for the Cowboys because if they win their first playoff game in the Wild Card Round they are assured of a second home playoff game. Given that Dallas went undefeated in the regular season at AT&T Stadium this is obviously incredibly significant. Thank you, Cardinals!

Giants’ RT Tyre Phillips to have surgery for torn quad - Big Blue View
Matt Peart replaced Phillips at right tackle, and will likely start the season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Giants have tackles Joshua Miles and Yodny Cajuste, and guard Jalen Mayfield on their practice squad. One of them figures to take Phillips’ roster spot for Sunday’s game.

Washington Commanders Vs. San Francisco 49ers - Studs and Duds - Hogs Haven
Sam Howell - It started off OK for Howell, then he fell apart in the second half. Bieniemy abandoned the run and made Sam a sitting duck in the pocket. The mistakes just piled on from there. Two more interceptions and a QBR of 21.7 - ugh! I feel this “staff” has ruined the young quarterback.

8 NFL teams control their destiny in Week 18 - SB Nation
Dallas Cowboys at Washington Commanders. Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET FOX. The Dallas Cowboys control their own destiny in the NFC East. While Dallas has already clinched a playoff spot, the division winner has yet to be decided. The Cowboys can lock up the NFC East with a win over the Washington Commanders on Sunday afternoon. Dallas can still clinch the East with a loss, but they would need a Philadelphia Eagles loss to the New York Giants in that situation.

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