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December 13, 2015

Halftime observations: Eagles 17, Bills 10

Rex Ryan being Rex Ryan, LeSean McCoy was the Buffalo Bills’ only captain at The Linc on Sunday. And just like Allen Iverson, Shady kissed the midfield logo.

The Eagles are up 17-10 at halftime. Big game down in South Philly today, here is what I saw in the first half.

The good

•    Riley Cooper dropped the long pass down the left sideline from Sam Bradford, but after that it was smooth sailing for the Eagles offense on the opening possession. Darren Sproles finished off the nine-play, 61-yard drive that lasted under three minutes. All three of the Birds’ running backs contributed on the drive, just how Chip Kelly imagined it in the offseason.

•    Jaylen Watkins kept his brother off the field for a moment. Donnie Jones boomed a 52-yarder (that’s what Donnie does, after all), and Watkins caused Marcus Thigpen to muff the punt that Bryan Braman recovered. Big play that gave the offense some good field position.

•    They capitalized off the turnover, as well. Beautiful deep throw by Bradford to Nelson Agholor for a 53-yard touchdown. Is that the play that gets the rookie going?

•    Kiko Alonso covered Shady well on a critical third down. That’s it, Eagles win the trade.

•    Don’t look now, but Bradford is playing very competent quarterback over the last few weeks. Great drive by him to get a field goal at the end of the half. Bradford isn’t throwing deep much (16-22 for 139 yards, touchdown), but every throw is on the money and he is still dealing with drops. I would like to see Señor Sleeves continue to push the ball down the field.

The bad

•    In the first quarter, Ed Reynolds was very tardy getting over and helping Byron Maxwell with Sammy Watkins over the top. The result was a 47-yard touchdown pass. That said, when you are heavily relying on Ed Reynolds to stop Sammy Watkins…

The ugly

•    The Eagles got a stop on the Bills’ third possession, but only because Tyrod Taylor badly missed a wide-open Watkins on a deep ball. The Eagles were playing with fire early on.

•    Jason Peters had to leave the field in the second quarter, and Dennis Kelly was thrown into the fire at left tackle. Dennis’ first two plays resulted in holding penalties, which left the Eagles with a 1st and 30. At least he is consistent!

•    Brian Barman? Allen Bar-BREE? Take a lap, Solomon Wilcots. That first-half performance was Stockton-esque.

Follow Rich on Twitter: @rich_hofmann