When the Eagles’ QB push play become a pull, flags should fly
The Eagles have perfected the QB push play, which continues to be perfectly legal. It ceases to be a legal play when the push becomes a pull.
There’s a reason for mentioning that. Last night, when the Eagles lined up in their trademark formation near the Tampa Bay end zone on third and goal, the effort by Jalen Hurts to score six points included not a push from tight end Dallas Goedert but an effort to pull him across the white stripe. Goedert did it again on fourth down, but it wasn’t as obvious.
“I was yanking him for sure,” Goedert admitted after the game, via Rob Maaddi of the Associated Press. “They say you can’t pull, but I was behind him.”
Goedert was indeed behind Hurts, but Goedert was not pushing. He was, as he put it, “yanking.” He was pulling. He slipped his arms under Hurts’s arms and tried to lift him in.
It’s not classic pulling, but it’s far closer to a pull than a push. And once it becomes a pull, it becomes an illegal play.
Chances are the push eventually will become an illegal play. With only the Eagles perfecting it, it seems like a no-brainer that at least 24 teams would come together and wipe it out.
Still, even without the pushing, the Eagles have the right players to gain yardage consistently via a traditional sneak, thanks to a great offensive line and a quarterback who knows how to slip through cracks and/or shove his way in.