By Teddy Brenner
It’s easy to jump to conclusions about yesterday’s disastrous Eagles loss to WFT, which was down 17-0 and won 27-17.
And some of those conclusions would be reflexive and wrong.
But this one isn’t:
Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz sucked.
Yes, he threw two touchdowns early, but he missed easy passes, never adjusted to Washington’s in-his-face-rush and looked like a deer in the headlights for most of the second half.
Wentz wasn’t helped by coach Doug Pederson’s play-calling, which left him home alone in the pocket so he could be sacked eight times.
But that’s a story for another time.
Wentz completed 24-of-42 passes (57.1%) for 270 passing yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. He led three scoring drives and ran for two rushing yards on one carry.
During the Eagles’ fourth offensive series of the game, tight end Dallas Goedert broke free from Washington linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis in coverage. As Goedert ran down the field, with a step or two on Pierre-Louis, Wentz launched a perfect throw in the bucket to the tight end, who caught the ball in stride and ran to the end zone for a touchdown. The toss was on the money and put the Eagles up by three scores in the second quarter.
Wentz completed passes to eight different receivers. His top target was Goedert, who caught eight of nine targets for 101 yards and a touchdown. Wide receiver Greg Ward caught four of five passes thrown his way for 24 yards. It should also be noted that Wentz was willing to push the ball down the field to wide receivers Jalen Reagor and DeSean Jackson — who was scarcely used.
While Wentz got off to a really nice start, he had a brutal second half. He was off the mark on late throws to Reagor, Jackson, John Hightower and Zach Ertz.
Wentz started 12-of-15 for 176 yards and two touchdowns. He then went through a stretch where he was 10-of-24 for 79 yards and two interceptions.
While he surged with the opening script, the flow of the game eventually exposed Wentz’s tendency to go through inaccurate stretches.
He finished with a 24-of-42 completion ratio for a 57.1 completion percentage.
With the offensive line in shambles, Wentz was asked to move around the pocket with regularity. He was able to keep quite a few plays alive with his legs as rushers came free from their blockers. While he didn’t run the ball often, his improvisation on the ground was admirable.
Wentz threw two interceptions during a brutal stretch in the middle of the game. Both interceptions were nearly identical.
On the first, Wentz threw to Reagor on a comeback route to the right sideline. Washington cornerback Fabian Moreau jumped Reagor’s route and picked off the pass.
On the second interception, Washington cornerback Jimmy Moreland jumped Hightower’s hitch route on the right sidelined and returned the ball deep into Eagles territory.
Both interceptions led to Washington touchdowns in a game that was dominated by the Eagles to that point.
Wentz was also strip-sacked in the fourth quarter, losing the ball to Washington with a turnover to seal the loss.
This performance might get blamed on the offensive line by some apologists, but this was as bad as we’ve seen Wentz in a while. He was inaccurate, indecisive and frankly lost throughout most of the second half.
It was an ugly performance against a division rival that the Eagles have dominated in recent years. The Eagles and Wentz will be kicking themselves for a while over this loss, especially with the brutal gauntlet of games that they’ll encounter during the home stretch of the season. Yikes!