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November 07, 2021

Handing out 10 awards from the Eagles-Chargers game

After a frustrating 27-24 home loss to the Los Angeles Chargers Sunday evening, the Philadelphia Eagles fell to 3-6. As always, win, lose, or tie, we hand out 10 awards.

1) The 'No Show' Award 🤷‍♂️: The Eagles' defensive line

A lot of the blame for this loss will no doubt fall on the shoulders of Jonathan Gannon, as well it should, but there was no bigger culprit than the play of the Eagles' defensive line.

On the night, Justin Herbert wasn't sacked, which isn't great (duh), but he was also only hit once! And that hit came via cornerback Steven Nelson. And he was flagged on the play for roughing the passer, lol.

The Eagles have dumped a boatload of financial and draft resources into their defensive line, and they were a complete no show Sunday evening.

2) The 'It's Always Him' Award 🤦‍♂️: Derek Barnett

In addition to making life easier on Herbert by getting nowhere near him all night, the Eagles also actively committed unforced errors, as Derek Barnett jumped offsides on a crucial 3rd and 6 play early in the fourth quarter on a drive that eventually ended in a Chargers touchdown.

What do you think about Barnett's penalty, Nick Sirianni"

3) The '80 Percent Club' Award 🏆: Justin Herbert

Because the Eagles didn't get so much as a whiff of Herbert, he completed 32 of 38 passes (84.2 percent) for 356 yards, 2 TDs, and 0 INTs. He also added a rushing TD. 

Herbert is now the fifth (!) quarterback to complete at least 80 percent of his passes against this Eagles' defense this season.

Welcome to the club, Justin! That stat is wild, and the fact that it has now happened five times this season does not reflect well on Gannon, to say the least.

4) The 'Night Off' Award 😴 : Ty Long

Who's Ty Long? 


He's the Chargers' punter. His services weren't needed.

5) The 'Missed Opportunity' Award 🙅‍♂️: Jalen Hurts

Postgame, Hurts was asked what it felt like helplessly watching the Chargers drive the field for the game-winning field goal. He took responsibility for his own play, stating that he missed two throws that could have changed the outcome of the game.

The first was an off-target throw to Dallas Goedert, shown here:

That throw wasn't egregious to me, as Hurts was getting hit as he threw.

Hurts also cited the missed throw to an open DeVonta Smith in the back of the end zone, shown here:

There are no excuses to be made on that one. That's simply a throw that every NFL quarterback should make with relative ease.

Hurts did some nice things Sunday evening, and he had one of his best drives of the season on a game-tying, 10-play, 78-yard march that included a pair of third down conversions, culminating in a 28-yard touchdown strike to Smith. But ultimately, it's the makeable plays that Hurts leaves on the field that will likely frustrate the Eagles' brass.

6) The 'Emerging Star' Award ✨:  DeVonta Smith

Smith had five catches on six targets for 116 yards and a TD, and as noted above, the one missed target should have been a TD with a better throw. DeVonta can play, and he's only going to get better. 

7) The 'Keep On Running' Award 🏃‍♀️💨: Nick Sirianni

Sirianni was committed to the rushing attack, even after falling behind, and the Eagles churned out 176 yards on the ground, a week after they gained 236 rushing yards. And they're doing it with guys like Jordan Howard and Boston Scott, albeit against poor rushing defenses. 

The Eagles' offensive line is blocking well in the run game, and their ability to slow the game down against a Chargers offense that the Eagles couldn't stop kept them in it until (almost) the final play of the game.

Earlier in the season, Sirianni was trying to get into shootouts with high powered offenses, which was just... 🤯.

More recently, he has embraced the run game as something of an equalizer, and it has been effective. The run game is taking pressure off of Hurts, and it has benefited the passing game, via play action. Sirianni called a good game in the loss.

8) The 'He Ain't Doug' Award: Sirianni

On the Eagles' opening drive, the Eagles moved the ball well and receivers were getting open. After the aforementioned missed opportunity down the field to Goedert, the Eagles faced a 4th and 5. Sirianni punted. 

Sirianni's timid approach to fourth downs has been a surprise through the first nine games, given Jeffrey Lurie's heavy desire to implement analytics.

9) The 'Grow up' Award 😭: The Garbage Fan Who Threw Flowers At Sirianni

On Sirianni's way into the locker room after the game, a fan threw a bouquet of flowers at Sirianni, who had recently talked about a flower analogy he had made to the team.

If you read the responses to that tweet, people seem to think that was funny, or OK in some way. It's a game. Don't throw things at people. Grow up. 

10) The 'If the Season Ended Today' Award 📈: The Eagles' draft positioning.

If the season ended today (it doesn't), the Eagles would have the third, seventh, and fourteenth overall picks in the 2022 NFL Draft. So at least there's that.

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