August 18, 2016
With Carson Wentz in street clothes on the sideline, the Eagles-Steelers second half was rather uneventful. Doug Pederson's team possessed the ball quite a bit more then it did in the opening 30 minutes, and Pittsburgh continued to have trouble against the Eagles defense, whether it was the starters or last guys on the roster.
The Eagles pitched a shutout, defeating the Steelers 17-0. Here's what I saw in the second half:
• If you asked any of the writers who are at training camp day in and day out, Paul Turner (UDFA, La. Tech) has been one of the team's most impressive receivers. A longshot coming into camp, Turner is definitely making his case to land on the 53-man roster. This one-handed grab was pretty sick:
Turner, who got some time running with the first team, finished the game with three catches for 44 yards.
• Chase Daniel was criticized pretty heavily last week, and I'm not sure all of it was deserved. Sure, he didn't play well, but the other offensive players were also plenty at fault. Daniel took over to start the second half and he led a 15-play, 87-yard touchdown drive. Daniel finished a solid but unspectacular 10-16 for 82 yards.
In many ways, this felt like the opposite situation. Last week, he had the backup offensive line running against Tampa Bay's starters. This week, he had a line that included Lane Johnson and Stefen Wisniewski against Pittsburgh's backups. Big difference.
• Kenjon Barner had success on that drive, running six times for 41 yards and the touchdown, on which he made a Pittsburgh defender miss badly in the hole:
Great possession capped by this Barner TD. Check out the block by Jones too, very impressive drive by him. pic.twitter.com/PkhWVtfh1h— Philly Influencer (@PHL_Influencer) August 19, 2016
• C.J. Smith, Wentz's teammate at North Dakota State, continued to make plays at the end of the game. Like Mike Mayock, I wouldn't mind him getting some playing time in the secondary earlier in these games.
• Marcus Smith got himself a sack:
• Dorial Green-Beckham: bust.
In all seriousness, there isn't too much bad to report from the second half. The Eagles offense didn't do a ton after the first drive, but they held onto the ball enough for the defense to shut out the Steelers. In general, I feel like these posts tend to skew negative; it's fair to give credit where it's due.
The first-team offense is still a big area of concern heading into Week 3 and the major preseason tune-up at Indy, but this was a solid performance by the Eagles as a whole.
Follow Rich on Twitter: @rich_hofmann