Eagles

Grading a tie like a loss in Eagles’ Week 3 report card

Eagles

The Eagles didn’t lose on Sunday, but they also failed to beat a Bengals team that had two wins in its previous 18 games coming into this week.

A 23-23 tie was a fitting end for that garbage game.

Here are the Eagles’ grades:

Quarterback

Carson Wentz: 29/47, 225 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT, 62.8 rating, 65 rushing yards, 1 rushing TD

For the third week in a row, Wentz was a major problem. This is the first time in his career he has had three straight games with a passer rating under 75. Wentz is hurting the Eagles right now. He threw two interceptions and nearly lost a fumble. The positives on Sunday were that he led the Eagles on a fourth-quarter drive to tie the game and did some stuff with his legs. But that’s only enough to pull him up from an F.

Grade: D-

Running backs

Miles Sanders: 18 carries, 95 yards

It’s not Sanders’ fault he got just 18 carries despite averaging 5.3 yards per attempt and despite the fact that the Bengals have an atrocious run defense. And Sanders alone would have gotten an A. But Corey Clement was 3 for 8 and Boston Scott was 3 for 5. The Eagles could only get the run game going when Sanders was in there.

Grade: B

Wide receivers

Greg Ward: 8 catches, 72 yards, 1 TD

Ward had a very good game and is the Eagles’ best receiver right now. But everyone else did almost nothing. DeSean Jackson hurt his hamstring after just two catches for 11 yards. And Jackson, Deontay Burnett, John Hightower and J.J. Arcega-Whiteside combined for seven catches for 49 yards. Kind of grading on a curve here based on their available players.

 

Grade: C-

Tight ends

Zach Ertz: 7 catches, 70 yards

Dallas Goedert had just one catch for seven yards before he left the game with an ankle injury. Richard Rodgers actually caught two passes for 15 yards in his absence. Ertz had a very solid game and made a huge over the shoulder catch in overtime. It was a perfect throw and a beautiful catch.

Grade: B

Offensive line

Grade: C

Wentz was sacked three times. Jason Peters had a very bad performance and is looking more like a 38-year-old tackle with every passing game. Aside from that, the OL was OK, especially in the run game. But the Eagles didn’t stick with the run enough against the Bengals.

Defensive line

Brandon Graham: 2 sacks, 4 tackles, 3 TFLs, 4 QB hits

You can say no one deserves an A after a tie, but the defensive line did its job all day. The Eagles finished with eight sacks and held Joe Mixon to 49 rushing yards. I thought Graham, Malik Jackson and Fletcher Cox all played very well. Even Derek Barnett had a couple sacks. Cox was unstoppable in overtime.

Grade: A

Linebackers

Nate Gerry: 8 tackles, 1 PBU

Gerry led the team in tackles but continues to look lost in coverage. We all thought the Eagles’ linebackers were going to be a problem and it turns out we were right. It just doesn’t seem like they have nearly enough talent at the position.

Grade: F

Secondary

Darius Slay: 7 tackles, 1 PBU

I thought Slay had another very good game and Cre’Von LeBlanc made some plays taking over the nickel corner job for Nickell Robey-Coleman, who had a nice PBU late in the game. But the Eagles also gave up 312 passing yards and two touchdowns to a rookie and Tyler Boyd went for 125 yards. I didn’t think Jalen Mills had a very good game.

Grade: D+

Special teams

Jake Elliott: 3/3 on FGs, 2/2 on PATs

Elliott hit everything he tried and we’ll never know if he would have hit the 59-yard game-winner. He did hit a 54-yarder with plenty of leg in the third quarter. Cam Johnston downed three of his six punts inside the 20 and had a long of 56. Corey Clement had a costly penalty at the end of one punt that helped the Bengals get a field goal.

Grade: B+

Coaching

Record: 0-2-1

We’ll start with the good because Pederson did win a pretty impressive challenge. OK, that’s all the good. His decision to punt for a tie is indefensible to me. You’re supposed to be an aggressive head coach; you called your autobiography “Fearless.” How can you punt there? And aside from that, he abandoned the run against the worst run defense in the league.

Grade: F