• October 7, 2022

Eagles Defense Barely Gets Job Done, But Loses Bradley & Graham In The Process

I commend the Eagles defense for the job they did when the Birds fell behind in the second half.  They forced Dallas into two three and outs, they set up the offense in great field position by picking off a pass, but this defense must play better.  They’re allowing too many points and they continue to perform awfully in the red zone.

Allowing twenty-seven points to a banged up Cowboys team is too much.  There was a good reason that Andy Reid was so jubilant after LeSean McCoy gained a first down to stop Dallas from getting the football back.

Eagles middle linebacker Stewart Bradley sustained what will likely be a season-ending injury.  He dislocated his elbow and will have an MRI on it today.  Rookie Jamar Chaney stepped in and did a decent job for the Birds.  The youngster was in the proper position most of the night.

Rookie defensive end Brandon Graham hurt his knee and is expected to miss at least a couple of weeks of action.

Let me also give the defense a pat on the back for the tremendous job they did against the Cowboys running game.  Dallas had run for nearly 400 yards in their last two games, but Felix Jones and Tashard Choice were limited to a total of 57 yards rushing.

This forced Dallas to throw the football more than they wanted to do and it denied them the opportunity to control the ball and control the game.  Big Antonio Dixon and Brodrick Bunkley made major impacts in the middle

On the downside, the Cowboys got into the end zone two out of the three times that they got in the red zone.  It seems that the Eagles defense has to stop a team from getting to the red zone or else.  This is the one weakness that could end up taking this team down.

Dimitri Patterson was in great position on the interception in the second half.  He was lined up in an outside technique as Roy Williams ran an out route.  Jon Kitna foolishly threw the ball to the out, despite the fact that Patterson was sitting outside and waiting on it.

Rookie safety Nate Allen’s tackling is getting worse in the open field rather than better.  He looked awful on the second touchdown pass to Cowboys tight end Jason Witten.  The rookie wasn’t even able to keep his feet on the play.  He fell to the ground and allowed the tight end to go into the end zone standing up.

I thought Quintin Mikell played well and made some key tackles that prevented potential big plays.  He came down with an interception, which stopped a Cowboys drive.

Trent Cole didn’t get any respect from the refs last night.  He was nearly undressed a couple of times by holds, yet nothing was called.  On one play, Cole’s face mask was grabbed but there were no flags thrown.

Is there a fake that Ernie Sims won’t fall for?  Sims does a good job of attacking running plays but he seems to always bite on fakes and get caught out of position.


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December 13, 2010 9:59 am

finally some1 mentions brandon graham’s name
i didnt know he was still on our team

December 13, 2010 10:02 am

at least mamula had 14 sacks his 1st 2 yrs
has graham got on the stat sheet yet?

December 13, 2010 10:06 am

Kudos to the Defensive Secondary who I thought played their best game as a unit this season.
After a cautious start, CB’s Patterson and Lindley really started to challenge the Cowboy Receivers
and carved out their own turf against the bigger Receivers of the Cowboys
S Mickell played a great all-around game and N Allen was in good position all night (though he did get his usual run-over play when Witten bowled him over at the 5 yard line en route to a TD)
I like how Lindley plays and think he will be the main 3rd CB for the remainder of the Season
As mentioned many times, I like when Hanson covers the slot back in the nickel/dime packages,but not when he’s outside lined at CB..
Tough injuries for Bradley and Graham who will be out for remainder of season..
LB Cheney made some plays and also got run over quite a few times in his 1st exntended play of the season. The Eagles will probably go out and re-sign Panel Egboh to help with depth at DE
D Tapp should see more snaps which he seems up for the challenge..

December 13, 2010 10:14 am

Defensive Stars for the Game

S Q Mikell
CB D Patterson & T Lindley (became more physical and agressive as game went on,good tackling)
LB M Fokou (had a strong all-around game)
DT Dixon (cannot be blocked effectively 1 on 1 by any Guard right now)
DT Bunkley (played his best game of the season)
DE Cole & Parker (played disciplined, held their edge and had great containment most of the game)

December 13, 2010 10:19 am

G – I would agree with the defense’s play….Allen’s tackling was pathetic on that TD ….hopefully we can get Assante back this week to strengthen the D-backfield….I can see why Detroit was not sad to see Sims leave, he does fall for every fake out there..I’ll bet he bought some CZ earrings thinking they were real Diamonds

December 13, 2010 10:22 am

are there no middle lb’ers on maybe sorry teams that we can pry away this yr ?

December 13, 2010 10:32 am

Q. What do the Dallas Cowboys and Billy Graham have in common?
A. They both can make 70,000 people stand up and yell “Jesus Christ”.

December 13, 2010 10:44 am

The one thing I will say about the defense is that once Dallas went up 24-20, they shut them down after that. I think that is what we are going to get out of this defense….. give up points in stretches and shut the other team down for stretches. Not for entire games but for quarters at a time. After they went up by 4 we scored 16 straight points because of the defense holding Dallas to punts and the offense scoring. If they continue to get turnovers, I think that’s the trade off we will have to deal with. We are clearly not going to shut too many teams down.

December 13, 2010 10:46 am

** I meant when they went up by 6.

December 13, 2010 10:59 am

for whatever reason, our defense seems to have trouble in the 3rd qtr…..I guess we have trouble adjusting to the changes that the opponents may make at halftime….the last 2 weeks have seen the birds lose leads during the 3rd qtr….Sean Mac needs to anticipate halftime adjustments better

December 13, 2010 11:05 am

green it seems in the beginning of games and the 3rd qtr. I guess when the opposing team makes an adjustment to start the game or next half it takes us almost an entire qtr to counter it. Not sure what goes on there.

December 13, 2010 11:11 am

To Scorp
When you think about it, what team really has a shut down defense for 4 quarters,,
(maybe the Steelers) but even the Patriots, Jets, Bears,Giants,Falcons,Saints and PAckers
have all given up points in differenet stretches of games this year.. It’s what the NFL has become
whicch is high-scoring,big play after big play, which is why winning teh TUrnover battle is huge
and can make up for defensive lapses if yuo can give your OFfense another possesion or 2 per game
But that’s 3-4 games in the row now that the Defense has tightened up in the 4th Quarter when it matters the most and at least gives the Offense a chance to come back and win the game or to extend a lead in a game..

December 13, 2010 11:14 am

What I didn’t like was the way a 38 year old backup was able to scramble for first down on 4th an 8

December 13, 2010 11:23 am

Paulman, I agree and that’s my point. There are no shutdown defenses this year. Which is what I’ve been saying the past couple weeks when some people would put out all these concerns as if we are the only team with defensive concerns. The serious playoff contenders will win games because they will score a lot of points and their defense gets turnovers at the right time.

December 13, 2010 12:30 pm

Has anyone noticed that when Vick drops back on the deep routes, he sometimes reverses his field so that the defense doesn’t know whether he’s going to roll left or right? He sometimes fakes one direction, then goes the opposite direction. It’s a slight move, but very effective. It’s similar to that of a center reverse pivoting while on the blocks. Vick’s is a thing of beauty.

Also, did you notice that Vick grabbed the area of his previous injury after a sack. (I think he was hurt).

Also after hitting his thumb on a helmet, his passes became inaccurate. It was then, that Reid decided to run the ball and to throw underneath, which lead to Jackson’s 10-yard out pattern for a 91-yard TD.

December 13, 2010 1:10 pm

Some things about our D.

They shut down Dallas’ run, which was their first priority.

In the red zone, they showed improvement.

After the first series, the Eagles forced Dallas to go:

5 and out,
3 and out,
3 and out,
3 and out,

They held Dallas to a field goal after Vick’s 1st pick (an overthrow to Celek) to end the first half.
(The first series should have been 3 and out, but a penalty kept the drive alive.)

2nd half

Held Dallas to a FG. The key play was a 17-yard pass to Witten. (We still have trouble with tight ends.)

In the 2nd series, they gave up a TD (fueled by a Felix Jones 35-yard screen)

3 and out
3 and out
8-play drive for a TD (keyed by passes to Witten and Tashard Choice)


December 13, 2010 1:15 pm

drummer, that throw to DJax on the out that went for 91 yards, that needed to be a VERY accurate throw. We were in the shadow of our endzone, throwing in the flat. If Vick is inaccurate at all it was a certain pick-six. I would disagree that Reids play calling changed at that point. One thing you cannot aurgue with is that they ran the ball more in the second half, whether it was from a thumb injury or not, it turned out to be a good thing.

December 13, 2010 1:30 pm

I noticed the final quarter that most of the pass routes were very short as VIck was taking 3-Step
drops and firing the ball. (I think with his injured thumb, he may have had an issue throwing the ball deep)
with any accuracy)

December 13, 2010 1:39 pm


You’re, the throw to Jackson was on the money, but the 3 or 4 throws prior to that were way off target.

Also prior to that play, Reid had called many vertical passes which resulted in Vick scrambles or incompletions. Afterward, it went like this:

P 2nd and 16 – Curl complete to Riley for 8
P Complete to Avant for 1st down slant
R McCoy up the middle for 6
R McCoy off tackle for 2
P Avant with a great grab for a 1st down (flare pattern)
P Deep shot to Jackson good coverage (pass interference)
P Screen to McCoy on an all out blitz – great tackle
P Ball overthrown to Avant or underthrown to Jackson (had time)
Field goal
P 91 yard TD to Jackson on the 10 yard out
R 3 yards
R End around to Jackson for 4
R 3rd and 3 QB draw
Field goal
P Completion to McCoy on the out pattern
R McCoy 1 hole for 5 – 1st down
R McCoy 1 hole for 19 – 1st down
R McCoy 12 yards for 1st down -forced another Dallas timeout
R Harrison 1 hole for 1 yard

December 13, 2010 1:43 pm

Here’s some chat from the game, as it was in progress. You’ll see that daggolden (and someone else) actually pointed out that Vick’s accuracy was suffering. After watching, I realized they were right.

50. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:40 pm
Lindley with the press coverage.

1. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:40 pm

We stopped them.
2. daggolden says:

December 12, 2010 at 10:43 pm
Ever since Vick has hit his thumb the ball has been all over the place.

3. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:43 pm
Okay, we’re working underneath and diversifying.

4. daggolden says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:44 pm
Drummer Lindley is a player. This is his 2nd good game. He will be our starting DB next year.

5. MaybeTheyCan says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:44 pm
Dag, you’re right. Accuracy taking a big hit and short throws…

6. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:45 pm
See what I’m talking about. No pressure on Vick, burning the clock, working our way down the field. Then as the safeties begin to make tackles, you hit em over the top with Jackson.

7. MaybeTheyCan says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:45 pm
both throws to Cooper and Avant were in the dirt and now the throw to avant way high.

8. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:46 pm
Looks like our MLB has stepped up as well.

December 13, 2010 1:51 pm

It was Maybe who also involved in the chat. I like to point it out while it’s happening. That way no one can come along and make up something later.

16. MaybeTheyCan says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:24 pm
keep going pass, pass, pass and ti gets ya sooner or later

17. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:25 pm
There’s that bubble screen. I wish we had called it.

18. daggolden says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:25 pm
Did someone tell Vick should stop running?

19. GarryCobb says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:25 pm
Jeremy Maclin has to come down with that ball.

20. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:25 pm
After the first 15, Reid goes to the drop back pass over and over. He loves to go vertical.

21. GarryCobb says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:26 pm
Chaney and Sims did a poor job of recognizing that screen

22. daggolden says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:26 pm
Theres the redzone defense we have grown to love

23. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:26 pm
Time for some magic!!! Vick must pull Reid’s butt out of the fire.

24. MaybeTheyCan says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:27 pm
Well, Vick says he like pressure and he’s got it now.

25. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:28 pm
Forget the vertical game for a minute. Work underneath, throw the screen, run the end around. Slow down the pass rush!!!

26. GarryCobb says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:28 pm
It’s time to step up right now. They’ve got to keep composed and stop making mistakes.

27. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:29 pm
Two screens all game long.

28. daggolden says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:30 pm
McCoy not being involved is a major mistake. Where is Shady?

29. phillywill says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:30 pm
If we lose u guys wont hear from me this week.

30. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:31 pm
I understand that the screen is more dangerous against Dallas because of their ends, but that’s our bread and butter. We’ve got to try it.

31. drummerwinslow says:
December 12, 2010 at 10:31 pm
Feel me?

December 13, 2010 7:51 pm

One big play was the Akers’ kickoff from the 15 where the Cowboys only got to their 23

That easily could have been their own 40 or better if Akers doesn’t get his leg into it the coverage team doesn’t get down field in time

December 14, 2010 1:31 pm

Paulman, the 3 step drop had nothing to do with Vick’s thumb. It’s called half time adjustments after you QB gets pounded in the 1st half.

The Cowboys started the 2nd half with they’re safeties deep and the Eagles adjusted with quick reads that eventually resulted in DJax;s big play. Vick was flicking the ball effortlessly way after the sore thumb. Look at the game again before making stupid comments.

December 14, 2010 3:43 pm

Getting Asante Samuel back healthy will be a key, big key…The young & backup LBs will just have to step up…Simple.

December 14, 2010 7:18 pm

To Songs,
I agree but also the fact that Vick wasn’t very accurate on mid to down field throws had something to do with it also.. C’Mon Man….