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October 31, 2021

Handing out 10 awards from the Eagles-Lions game

In a battle between a pair of NFL juggernauts, the Philadelphia Eagles came away with a 44-6 laugher over the Detroit Lions. As always, win, lose, or tie, we hand out 10 awards.

1) The 'Hey, An Adjustment!' Award 🔧: Jonathan Gannon

Over the first seven games of the season — with perhaps the exception of the Eagles' win in Carolina over the Panthers — Gannon parked his safeties a mile or so off of the line of scrimmage, daring opposing quarterbacks to beat them underneath. They gleefully obliged. 

Heading into this matchup against a Lions team with no big play ability, sticking with that defense would be a borderline fireable offense. 

But give credit where it's due. Gannon adjusted, and allowed his defense to be the aggressor, even blitzing on occasion (!) against a woeful Detroit offense ill-equipped to handle pressure.

And the results were there. The Eagles held a shutout until there were just over 7 minutes left to play. 

2) The 'Run the Ball!' Award: Nick Sirianni

Similarly, anyone who has watched the Eagles this season has likely called for Sirianni to make the run game a bigger part of the offensive game plan.

Even with Miles Sanders out, the Eagles had 46 runs, a season high by a country mile. Boston Scott, Jordan Howard and Kenny Gainwell each had at least 12 carries, and the team as a whole racked up 236 yards on the ground.

3) The 'Elusive' Award 🏃‍♀️💨: Jalen Hurts

As a passer, Hurts was 9 of 14 for 103 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs. (Shrug). 

However, he was able to escape pressure repeatedly (perhaps at times with open receivers), and turned in some highlight reel scrambles. This was probably not a performance that will earn Hurts many points toward his quest to become the team's franchise quarterback in 2022 and beyond. Ultimately, the Eagles are going to want a quarterback who can win through the air. 

But for one day Hurts was at least very fun to watch.

MORE: Final observations: Eagles 44, Lions 6 | It wasn't just the Lions being terrible, the Eagles could be turning a corner | The good, bad and ugly from the first half of Eagles-Lions

4) The 'Finally Dominant' Award 💪: The Eagles' trenches

The Eagles' offensive line owned the Lions' front, mainly because, well, the game plan afforded them the opportunity to execute run plays that weren't foofy RPOs.

And on the defensive side of the ball, the Eagles got to Jared Goff 6 times. Josh Sweat had 2 sacks, while Derek Barnett, Milton Williams, Hassan Ridgeway, and Tarron Jackson all had one each.

Even Fletcher Cox got in on the act, as he blew up a screen, which is something that he informed us that he is not paid to do. Give that man some overtime pay!

5) The 'Homecoming' Award 🏡: Avonte Maddox and Darius Slay

Maddox is from Detroit and Slay played for the Lions for seven years. They combined for a defensive TD.

Slay, Maddox and Steven Nelson have all had nice seasons for the Eagles.

6) The 'Franchise TE' Award: Dallas Goedert

In two games since the Eagles traded Zach Ertz, Goedert has 9 catches on 12 targets for 142 yards (15.8 YPC). On Sunday, he basically was the Eagles' passing game, accounting for 63 percent of the Eagles' receiving yards.

7) The 'Thank You' Award 🙏: Jared Goff and the Lions' roster

Holy crap Jared Goff stinks.

I mean, Good Lord.

And that might also be one of the worst rosters I've ever seen. I'm embarrassed that I picked them to win.

MORE: Lane Johnson discusses ongoing battle with depression, anxiety | Mailbag: Are there any 'sure' wins left for Eagles? | WTS: Eagles trade rumors ahead of deadline

8) The 'Thank You' Award, Part II' Award 🙏🙏: Dan Campbell

At the end of the first half, for some insane reason, instead of kicking a field goal Campbell decided to go for it on 4th and 1 from the Eagles' 22 yard line with 13 seconds to play. If the Lions had converted that, then what? They'd kick a slightly closer field goal?

I wondered if a winless team had a better coaching staff than the Eagles heading into this matchup. Nope. 

9) The 'Buyer' Award 🤑💰: Howie Roseman

The NFL trade deadline is Tuesday, and heading into this game, the Eagles felt like clear sellers. But after a 44-6 win...

10) The 'Hey That Looked Familiar' Award 🤣: Carson Wentz

In Eagles draft pick news, the Indianapolis Colts and the Miami Dolphins both lost. The Colts in particular lost in hysterical fashion.

With 1:33 left in regulation and the score tied, Carson Wentz reverted back to his 2020 form, and did this:


There are actually people defending that play, on the premise that if Wentz had taken the safety, it would essentially be game over, while a pick-six at least gave the Colts a chance. Which, I mean, just, GTFOH.

The Colts had the ball at their 8 yard line, and they called a screen. If the screen isn't there, Wentz should have immediately thrown the ball at the feet of the tight end in the route. Instead, he retreated into the end zone, and tried to make something of a play that was clearly shot, much like he did when he got concussed by Jadeveon Clowney in the playoffs. It'll probably be the worst interception of the 2021 season.

But the game wasn't over. The Colts still had a chance to tie, and they scored on a Jonathan Taylor TD run after a long pass interference penalty. 

In overtime, after the Colts got a defensive stop, Wentz did this: 

"It's first down in OT and there are three guys wide open underneath, but Ima fit this through three defenders to the guy slightly further down the field." 

Anyway, as of 6 p.m. EST, if the season ended right now, the Eagles would have three top 10 picks.

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