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December 10, 2017

Handing out 10 awards from the Eagles-Rams game

The Philadelphia Eagles are now 11-2 after an exciting win over the Los Angeles Rams, but that result is meaningless compared with the diagnosis of Carson Wentz's knee injury, which is feared to be a torn ACL.

Still, as always, in a 'have to catch my plane' version, we hand out 10 awards.

1) The 'Why do you hate Philly' Award: God

Seriously, God? Really? I mean, there may not be a player in the league who loves you more than Carson Wentz now that Tebow is gone, and this is what You do?

What did Philly do? Are You boys with Santa? Are You punishing Philly because Santa is still mad about the snowball thing? Tell him to act like a man and stop patronizing, that wuss.

2) The Goat Award: Carson Wentz

Before he was lost for the game (and possibly the season) with a serious knee injury, Wentz threw his 33rd TD pass of the season, which makes him the Eagles' single-season record holder for touchdown passes, passing Sonny Jurgensen, who threw for 32 touchdowns in 1961.

And he did it four plays after potentially tearing his ACL. Goat status achieved.

3) The 'Welp, I guess you're the guy now' Award: Nick Foles

Former Pro Bowl MVP Nick Foles is now likely the Eagles' starting quarterback. He clearly has less velocity on his throws than Wentz, he obviously doesn't move around anywhere nearly as well, and he threw a pass to freaking Halapoulivaati Vaitai. 

The Eagles are a far worse team with Foles as the quarterback than they are with Wentz. #Analysis. They are likely going to be underdogs to whoever they face in the first round of the playoffs. Sorry, but that's just the new reality.

Still, Foles was able to do just enough in relief of Wentz on Sunday, finding Nelson Agholor for a huge first down conversion that sealed the game.

4) The 'NFC East champs' Award: The Eagles

Cool! Right? Huh? No? Yeah, ok.

5) The 'Big Balls Doug' Award: Doug Pederson

To begin, I was dumb and peeked at Twitter for fan reaction after the game to Wentz's injury. It seems some people are somehow blaming Pederson for that because he should have run the ball on that play instead of passing. That is so far beyond dumb I don't even know how to wrap my brain around it.

Anyway, Doug had himself a great game, in my view, seeing as the offense put up 37 points, and he made two big fourth down calls, most notably from the Rams' three-yard line on fourth and goal.

6) The 'Ertz Shmertz' Award: Trey Burton

Earlier this season, Zach Ertz missed a game against the Broncos, and Trey Burton filled in, hauling in a long TD pass from Wentz. On Sunday, with Ertz out once again, Burton had 5 catches for 71 yards and 2 TDs. He has proven to be a very valuable reserve.

7) The 'Revenge' Award: Chris Long

After eight seasons with the Rams, Long was released during the 2016 offseason. He went on to win a Super Bowl with the New England Patriots, and against his former team on Sunday, he had perhaps the play of the day, when he strip-sacked Jared Goff, leading to a crucial fourth-quarter turnover.

8) The 'Hey, he did something' Award: Torrey Smith

Earlier this week, we noted that the Eagles needed to get more out of Torrey Smith or replace him. Smith finally had a big game, hauling in 6 receptions for 100 yards.

9) The 'Ew' Award: The Eagles' defense

While they did make a few big plays, this game was by far the Eagles' worst performance of the season defensively. They tackled poorly, didn't capitalize on a few turnover opportunities, and gave up a few very quick, big-play drives. With Wentz likely out, the defense is very clearly going to have to carry the team going forward. They cannot play the way they did today.

10) The 'Home field' Award: The Panthers

As we noted in our look around the league at what went right and wrong for the Eagles on Sunday, the Panthers knocked off the Vikings, who previously had the same record as the Eagles and were holding the tiebreaker. With their loss to the Panthers, the Vikings not only fell a game behind the Eagles in the standings, they also lost a game to a common opponent, meaning that if the Eagles were to be tied with the Vikings in the standings again, the Eagles would hold most tiebreaker scenarios.

But still, you know, Wentz, and whatnot.

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