GREEN BAY, Wis. — First-round draft choice Derek Barnett logged two sacks, and fourth-round pick Mack Hollins reeled in a touchdown as the Eagles kicked off their preseason schedule in Green Bay with strong showings from their newcomers, but the Packers prevailed for the 24-9 victory.
Carson Wentz completed all four of his passes for 56 yards and the touchdown to Hollins, a 38-yard catch-and-run that gave the Eagles a 6-0 lead. The two-point conversion attempt bounced off Nelson Agholor’s hands, and the Packers scored the next 17 points of the contest.
Second-year return man Trevor Davis returned a punt 68 yards for a score for the Packers, and No. 2 quarterback Brett Hundley found Jeff Janis for 20-yard touchdown midway through the second quarter.
Bryce Treggs caught seven passes for 91 yards, all from No. 2 quarterback Matt McGloin.
Hollins said earlier this week he had never even attended an NFL game before, but he found comfort early when he caught a ball over the middle from Wentz, shook three tacklers and tiptoed down the sideline for a 38-yard score midway through the first quarter.
Hollins shook off Packers’ defenders Kevin King, Quinten Rollins and Clay Matthews on the play – two former second-round picks and a first-rounder. Matthews and Rollins have been regular starters, and King was the Packers’ top choice in the 2017 draft.
Barnett broke Reggie White’s sack record at the University Tennessee and began his pro career fittingly wearing an Eagles jersey and playing at Lambeau Field. He recorded a sack in the second quarter that helped force a Packers’ field goal after Green Bay started a drive deep in Eagles territory and was credited with another later in the quarter that cost the Packers 12 yards.
Barnett also hurried quarterback Joe Callahan on a screen pass that went for no gain in the third quarter. He generated strong pressure all night.
Undrafted running back Corey Clement accounted for 40 yards on a drive that chewed up close to seven minutes in the third quarter, but he couldn’t corral a short pass on third and goal from the 7, and the drive ended in a Caleb Sturgis field goal.
Wentz played one series plus one play, good enough for a perfect quarterback rating of 158.3.
Treggs appeared to have a good rapport with backup McGloin, catching five passes for 75 yards in the first half. With Marcus Johnson out of the game as he nursed a hamstring injury, Treggs made the most of his opportunity in the spotlight. The second-year player out of Cal caught just three passes for 80 yards last year in the regular season.
McGloin made a touchdown-saving tackle in the second quarter, but only after overthrowing a pass right to Packers linebacker Joe Thomas, who returned it 30 yards to the Eagles 17. It was one of three first-half turnovers for the Eagles offense.
McGloin finished 28 of 42 passing for 205 yards, with one interception.
Special teams issues
The Eagles own a reputation as boasting one of the NFL’s best special teams units, but it was a shaky night on that front. Not only did the Eagles permit a punt return for touchdown, but return man Donnel Pumphrey also muffed a punt deep in Green Bay territory, which he recovered. Before the half was over, Joe Walker committed a holding penalty that negated a strong return by Pumphrey.
Green Bay second-year return man Trevor Davis went untouched to the end zone at the 11:50 mark of the second quarter for that 68-yard punt return.
Sturgis attempted a 46-yard field goal to end the first half that clanged off the right goal post. Sturgis later cashed in a 25-yarder.
Ron Brooks, who was the first man down the field on the punt that resulted in a Green Bay touchdown, limped off with a left hamstring injury and returned to the locker room. He did not return.
Tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai was helped off the field early in the third quarter with a left knee injury.
Running back Pumphrey wasn’t injured, but he took some big hits in the first half, when he posted four rushes for five yards and five catches for 12 yards.
Alshon Jeffery is past his recent shoulder injury but did not suit up, nor did guard Brandon Brooks (ankle), receiver Marcus Johnson (hamstring) or running back Wendell Smallwood (hamstring).
Undrafted rookie safety Tre Sullivan administered a vicious hit on Packers receiver Malachi Dupre, necessitating a lengthy delay and bringing the stretcher onto the field early in the fourth quarter. Dupre, a seventh-round draft pick out of LSU, gave a thumbs up the crowd as he was wheeled off the field. Dupre was taken to the hospital after the game, and initial reports indicated movement in all his extremities.
Sullivan forced a fumble on the play, marking the second takeaway for the Eagles in the game.
Linebacker Mychal Kendricks was responsible for the Eagles’ other takeaway, picking off Packers quarterback Hundley and returning the ball six yards to the Packers 36. The play came one snap after Eagles tight end Billy Brown fumbled the ball away and review upheld the miscue.
Two tight ends were charged with fumbles in the first half.
Trey Burton showed some moves on a 10-yard completion in the second quarter but surrendered the football when LaDarius Gunter stripped it away and scooped it up for the Packers.
Brown caught a pass during a 2-minute drill in the final moments of the first half, but Green Bay’s Blake Martinez knocked it loose, and defensive tackle Christian Ringo scooped it up. The play was reviewed and upheld, though Brown’s left forearm looked very close to down.