Says Pro Football Focus:
Out of the 26 designated targets quarterback Carson Wentz had in Thursday night’ 34-27 win at Green Bay, 10 went to a tight end: eight to Zach Ertz and two to Dallas Goedert – and it’s clear the Eagles were a far more efficient offense on those 10 targets.
On those throws Wentz directed to both Ertz and Goedert, he came away successful with a 133.8 passer rating and averaged a solid 8.1 yards per attempt. According to PFF’s QB Charting System currently led by former NFL QB Bruce Gradkowski, Wentz threw 80% of these targets accurately. For perspective, that 80% accurate pass rate to tight ends is the second highest we have seen in a game this season.
Both Ertz and Goedert didn’t let Pederson and the offense down as they both caught every single one of their catchable targets and combined had seven of Philly’s 12 first downs and touchdowns receiving. While Goedert did finish with a solid 74.8 receiving grade on the night, Ertz was the star of the show with an ELITE receiving grade of 91.1. Excluding plays negated by penalty, Ertz was targeted on 40% of his routes ran – which is now the second-highest rate he has had in a single game in his entire career – and he made the most of every route ran gathering 3.25 yards per route run.
As mentioned, the Eagles had a tough task at hand going up against arguably the best secondary in the league that is full of ballhawks. However, this Packer defense had no answer for the monstrous Eagle tight ends. When either Ertz or Goedert was targeted, the Green Bay coverage faltered, giving up .761 expected points added per play and allowed positive EPA on over 90% of those plays. For the layman, Expected Points Added puts yards gained on a play into context (like down, distance, field position) to give the best measure of per-play efficiency.
Though this doesn’t mean the Packers secondary as a whole finally regressed more towards the mean – they were still very much on lockdown when a wide receiver was targeted, allowing -.111 EPA per play and just a 30.8% positive EPA rate. Consequently, Wentz was not nearly the same quarterback on those non-tight end targets. In those instances of going to a non-tight end, Wentz had a 98.7 passer rating and averaged a lowly 4.9 yards per attempt and throwing just 40% of his passes accurately. This just shows once again how instrumental Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert were in moving the ball downfield for Philly.
One may look at the box score and see that the duo of Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert only had 81 combined yards receiving and think they had an average game, but you have to put their performance into context like PFF does and as we all know – numbers never lie.