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Grading the Eagles' 33-10 win over the 49ers in Week 8

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USA Today Images

Grading the Eagles' 33-10 win over the 49ers in Week 8

Grading the Eagles' 33-10 win Sunday after over the San Francisco 49ers at Lincoln Financial Field (see breakdown):

QUARTERBACKS
Carson Wentz: 18/32, 211 YDS, 2 TD, 1 INT

Not Wentz's best game by any means, but the second-year passer continues to get the job done for the Eagles. In his defense, the protection was shaky early, and the offense kept getting pinned in its own end. Wentz also held the ball too long on occasion when the protection was solid and missed some throws that would've extended drives or gone for a touchdown. Regardless, he kept mistakes to a minimum and made enough plays to win. Nick Foles even got into the game at the end.

Grade: B-

RUNNING BACKS
LeGarrette Blount: 16 ATT, 48 YDS, 1 TD

It's not how you start, it's how you finish, and Blount finished strong. The final numbers don't look spectacular — that's 3.0 yards per carry, for those keeping track at home — but Blount put the game ice with four carries for 26 yards and a touchdown on the Eagles' last scoring drive. Corey Clement had the longest run of the game for either team, ripping off a 22-yarder, while Wendell Smallwood managed just two touches total and was curiously absent from the game plan.

Grade: B-

WIDE RECEIVERS
Alshon Jeffery: 2 REC, 62 YDS, 1 TD

For the first time all season, we saw vintage Jeffery on a 50/50 ball. Jeffery hit the brakes and went up for the underthrown pass from Wentz, then outraced multiple 49ers defenders to the end zone to finish a 53-yard catch-and-run. Only 2 of 8 targets to Jeffery were complete, but the big play helped put the game away in the second half (see Roob's observations). Mack Hollins came up with three receptions for 30 yards, but also appeared to run the wrong route on Wentz's interception. The group is still very much a work in progress.

Grade: B-

TIGHT ENDS
Zach Ertz: 4 REC, 34 YDS, 1 TD

Another week, another productive game for Ertz. The 26-year-old didn't necessarily blow up the box score, but he did pick up his sixth touchdown of the season. The other tight ends were involved in the passing attack this week as well. Trey Burton caught two passes for 21 yards, while Brent Celek had one 14-yard grab.

Grade: A-

OFFENSIVE LINE
Halapoulivaati Vaitai: Started at LT

The offensive line did not look good, but don't blame Vaitai. The second-year player isn't going to make anybody forget about Jason Peters, but he largely played fine in his first NFL start at left tackle. Most of the pressure on Wentz was coming from the right side of the line. It was not Lane Johnson's best day, though the unit as a whole struggled, particularly in the first half.

Grade: B-

DEFENSIVE LINE
Fletcher Cox, Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry: 1.0 SK each

The NFL's No. 1 run defense was at it again, limiting 49ers running backs to 54 yards on 18 carries — a meager 3.0 average. The Eagles' front four got two tackles for loss from Vinny Curry and one each from Cox, Graham, Tim Jernigan and Derek Barnett. San Francisco's patchwork line was clearly overmatched, so the Eagles dominated up front, as they should. It wasn't overly impressive given the circumstances but was exactly what it needed to be.

Grade: A+

LINEBACKERS
Mychal Kendricks: 7 TKL, 1.0 SK, 2 QBH, 1 PD

Getting the start for Jordan Hicks at middle linebacker, Joe Walker got off to a shaky start. Walker was beaten for a 24-yard completion to tight end Garrett Celek on the second play from scrimmage. It would go down as the 49ers' longest play of the game. The linebackers were stellar after, especially Kendricks, who was all over the place. Nigel Bradham had five tackles and a pass breakup as well and would've had an interception had Rodney McLeod not got there first.

Grade: A

DEFENSIVE BACKS
Jalen Mills: 1 TFL, 1 INT, TD

49ers quarterback C.J. Beathard was in way over his head. That much was evident on a woeful pass outside the numbers that was easily picked by Mills and returned 37 yards to paydirt. McLeod had a pick as well when Patrick Robinson came crashing into a receiver as the ball arrived, deflecting the pass into the air. Beathard completed 47.2 percent of his passes for 4.6 yards per attempt against an Eagles secondary that had nothing to fear.

Grade: A+

SPECIAL TEAMS
Donnie Jones: 45.8 AVG, 2 IN20

Early on, this was a field-position battle, one that Jones' left leg helped the Eagles win. Jones tied his season-high of six punts, doing his part to keep a bad 49ers offense pinned on its own half of the field on a rainy day. Barnett's blocked field goal ultimately wasn't a factor in the outcome, though it was a big play nonetheless. However, Jake Elliott actually brought the special teams mark down this week, connecting on field goals of 40 and 51 yards, but missing two extra points (see Rookie Report).

Grade: A-

COACHING
Eagles' record: 7-1

Another slow, ugly start, but the Eagles never stop battling. This was a game they should win, and they did, so no bonus points or anything for Doug Pederson for keeping his team focused. Still, it was closer than many would have preferred for a long time, but they toughed it out and slowly overtook an inferior opponent.

Grade: B+

Joel Embiid swatted Donovan Mitchell, drew a tech, and ignited a Philly explosion

Joel Embiid swatted Donovan Mitchell, drew a tech, and ignited a Philly explosion

We didn't even know if Joel Embiid was going to play just hours before tonight's contest as he was listed as a game-time decision with knee soreness.

Play he did. And he treated the Wells Fargo Center crowd to one of the more energetic moments of the evening. 

The Sixers beat the Jazz in South Philly on Monday night, 107-86, to bounce back from that tough loss on Saturday (see observations).

Embiid was a big part of that. He finished with 15 points, 11 boards, three assists and a couple of blocks.

It was one block on Donovan Mitchell in particular that had The Center going bonkers.

Watch:

The block, the stare down, the technical foul signal, the crowd pumping ... Embiid provided a perfect moment.

"It was some good theater and the two embraced afterwards. It was fun to watch," Marc Zumoff said after the game.

Mitchell wrote it off as a rookie mistake.

"Just gotta keep my head," Mitchell said. "It's a learning experience, especially in that situation when we're making a comeback."

Whether they were making a comeback or not is debatable. 

"I shouldn't have done it. I should have just let it go."

Brett Brown was OK with the play.

"I'm always mindful of how do we stay disciplined," Brown said. "Jo understands it's risky if you taunt. I want my guys playing with an edge. I want them to feel some level of swagger and feel good about themselves. That was a big play. It certainly got the crowd involved."

As for his part in the incident, Embiid admitted he may have embellished just a bit. The big guy is not that easy to move.

"I flopped and he got a technical for it," Embiid said. "That's basically how it happened. It's all fun. After the game, we shook hands."

Processing Sixers' tasty new concession food … the meat pie

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Christina Betz | NBC Sports Philadelphia

Processing Sixers' tasty new concession food … the meat pie

The Sixers on Wednesday sent over a box of Four’N Twenty Australian beef pies to promote The Center's newest concession food. The meat pies are in homage to future Hall of Famer, Ben Simmons, who hails from the Land Down Under and was the driving force for helping the team sign its first international sponsor.

These magnificent meat pies will be available at home games beginning Wednesday. 

Naturally, I was intrigued to try the foreign (and free) food. A little research on the brand gave me the advice to "tuck in to a classic," which I gladly agreed to.

The packaging recommended an oven, but without access to one at work, and hunger too great to wait for the toaster oven, I went straight for the four and a half minutes in the microwave.

Three and half minutes later (our microwave is one of the industrial super-strong ones), I had this waiting for me:

Armed with just a plastic fork and knife, I decided to dive in and give "THE GREAT AUSTRALIAN TASTE" a try.

First impression?

The pastry was way crispier than I thought was achievable from a microwave. Like this was some "bake in the oven at 350 for 10 minutes" crispiness. I was having some serious issues cutting through with my plastic knife.

Once I managed to split it open, I was rewarded with a steaming pastry filled with a dark brown meat stuffing.

After that initial cut, things took a little turn for the worse.

I was forced to use my hands to break and eat the rest of it following several unsuccessful attempts to cut bite-sized pieces with the tools I had.

The pie was … really tasty. The meat filling was just a delicious ground beef mixture, with no weird spices or flavors, and the pastry was perfectly flaky and crispy. I could definitely see myself wanting this again when I’m craving a comfort food or want to eat a classier hamburger.

My main issue with the meat pie lies within the actual feasibility of eating it during a game. I had some serious struggles while I was sitting at a desk, with a plate and at least semi-useful utensils. I can’t really imagine eating a pie in a stadium seat between two rabid Processors.

My top-5 Australian exports
1. Ben Simmons
2. Hugh Jackman
3. Nicole Kidman
4. Walkabouts
5. Boxed Wine
.
.
.
10. Brett Brown's accent
11. Meat pies

Final thought: This meat pie is a really solid, albeit, strange new food for a sporting event. I can only really see its success playing out in two ways: A lot of greasy, meaty high fives or a messier version of the Flyers' bracelet debacle if the Sixers drop another game in which they led by 24 points.