”These fans deserve to see better football,” linebacker Connor Barwin said.
By Jack Ryan
The Eagles tried to pivot off the humiliation of losing to Tampa Bay 45-17 at home on Sunday, and no one was more focused than coach Chip Kelly:
”If we allow (the loss) to affect us on Thursday, then shame on us. I told those guys: ‘You better have a short memory.’ Every single person in that room contributed to that loss.”
Going on the road after home losses to Miami and Tampa can’t hurt. The Eagles are 2-5 in Philly since last December. They heard plenty of boos on Sunday, many fans left early, and some are calling for Kelly to be fired.
Despite the team’s miserable performance the past two weeks, the Eagles are only one game behind the New York Giants (5-5) in the mediocre NFC East. A win over the Lions coupled with the Giants losing at Washington next Sunday would mean a three-way tie for first place in the division.
”We can’t worry about what other teams are doing,” Sanchez said. ”We just have to keep playing and keep improving.”
The Eagles were awful on defense against the Buccaneers. They allowed Jameis Winston to tie a rookie record with five touchdown passes and gave up 289 yards rushing, including 235 by Doug Martin.
Their biggest issue was getting off the field. Tampa was 10 for 16 on third down and 1 for 1 on fourth down. Three of Winston’s TD passes were on third downs.
”I didn’t call it well and I didn’t prepare them well,” defensive coordinator Bill Davis said. ”We got a whooping, and we have to move on.”
The Eagles have been inconsistent since Week 1. They’ve lost some games because their offense didn’t perform well. They’ve lost some games because the defense didn’t do its job. And missed kicks and blocked punts on special teams cost them a couple games, too.
Kelly took a 4-12 team he inherited from Andy Reid and turned it into a division champion in 2013. But Philly missed the playoffs after a 9-3 start last year and is only in the hunt this season because the East is so bad.
Kelly’s bold offseason moves after taking control of personnel decisions seem to have backfired. His up-tempo offense was much better before he got rid of 2013 Pro Bowl quarterback (Nick Foles), a two-time All-Pro running back (LeSean McCoy), a three-time Pro Bowl receiver (DeSean Jackson), 2014 Pro Bowl receiver (Jeremy Maclin) and a two-time Pro Bowl guard (Evan Mathis).