Photo Credit: Inside the Iggles
The Philadelphia Eagles find themselves at 5-5 10 games into the season. With 6 games left to play and plenty of action and fun already had this season, here are the Eagles top 10 plays so far this season.
10) Wentz connects with J-Matt
Carson Wentz was named the opening day starter at Quarterback just a week before the season started due to the Sam Bradford trade to the Minnesota Vikings. His first NFL opponent would be the Cleveland Browns. On his first career drive in the NFL the Eagles marched 68 yards down the field, capped off by a 19-yard touchdown from Wentz to Jordan Matthews. The first touchdown pass of his NFL career. Wentz finished 22/37 with 278 passing yards and 2 touchdowns. Eagles fans knew they had their future guy at QB.
9) Only need one arm to play safety
Rodney McLeod was signed this past offseason to a 5-year contract and has 100% paid dividends. In week 3 against the Steelers McLeod was covering Sammie Coates in the end zone in the third quarter of the game in which the Eagles led 24-3. Ben Roethlisberger fired a deep pass to Coates in the end zone which would’ve been caught had it not been for the right arm of Rodney Mcleod. Mcleod was able to get his arm in between the ball and Coates’ hands, causing a wrestle for the ball on the ground what Mcleod won for the Interception. His second pick of the season was one of the best plays so far this season for the Eagles.
8) Barner’s second attempt
Kenjon Barner isn’t a very big piece of the Eagles offense. He usually does Kick-off and punt returns. In week 9 against the Giants the Eagles were down 21-10 with 12 minutes and 17 seconds remaining in the 3rd quarter the Eagles called his named at the 3-yard line. He took the hand-off from under center and looked to be immediately stuffed at the 2-yard line but he kept on pushing forward, broke a tackle and dove for the goal line. It was an amazing run and it got the Eagles back in the game. Unfortunately the Eagles still fell to the Giants 28-23.
7) Fumble or Interception
In week 9 the Giants were throwing all over the Eagles defense and the Giants had a 28-17 lead with 10 minutes and 17 seconds left in the 4th quarter. Eli Manning took the snap from the shotgun and fired a pass towards Odell Beckham Jr on a slant route. It appeared that Beckham had the ball in his hands and went to the ground, then all of a sudden Eagles CB Nolan Carroll popped up with the ball in his hands and was pleading his case for an Eagles turn over. The play was reviewed and it looked as though it was just an incomplete pass and that the Giants would keep the football. Then the referee announced to the crowd that the ruling on the field is an interception recovered by the Eagles because Beckham never had control of the football. The play was reviewed and confirmed, Nolan Carroll stole the football from Odell Beckham Jr to shift the momentum back in the Eagles favor.
6) Barwin and Hicks team up for the pick
This was the game to watch in the second half. With 1 minute and 55 seconds left in the game Eli Manning took the snap with the pocket collapsing due to pressure coming from the Eagles. He fired a pass over the middle looking for Tight end Will Tye. The pass was tipped by Eagles Defensive end Conner Barwin and was coming to the ground spinning and twisting every which way. Then Eagles Middle linebacker Jordan Hicks dove and made a beautiful fingertip catch as he hit the ground for the pick. The Eagles had the ball back with time to take a lead only down by 5. They couldn’t do it but it was a great catch.
5) Bradham and McLeod combine for the first pick of the season
In the third quarter of Week 1 the Eagles had a commanding lead over the Cleveland Browns. But the Browns were trying to mount a comeback. On 2nd & 5 from the Eagles 28-yard line Robert Griffin III took the snap and fired a nice pass over the middle to his rookie Wide receiver Corey Coleman. Before the ball could get to Coleman Eagles Linebacker Nigel Bradham was able to reach up and get a hand on it. The ball was twisting and turning on its way to the ground until Eagles safety Rodney McLeod dove forward and secured the ball into his chest for the Eagles first interception of the season. This basically secured the Eagles that there would be no comeback attempt.
4) All Aboard the Sproles Train
The Eagles were leading the Steelers 13-3 with 12 minutes and 54 seconds left in the third quarter. Wentz took the snap with Running back Darren Sproles to his right. Once Wentz took the snap the pocket started to collapse as the Steelers blitzed. He stepped up and ran along the line of scrimmage before finding Sproles up field wide open. Sproles had three Steelers defenders in front of him when he caught the ball. He accelerated and cut back toward the middle of the field, then back to the side, and then back to the middle into the end zone for a 73-yard touchdown reception. It gave the Eagles a 20-3 lead and they would go onto win 34-3.
3) Who is Wendell Smallwood?
The Eagles drafted Running back Wendell Smallwood out of West Virginia in the fifth round of the most recent NFL draft. He was looked at as a project that could be developed into the Eagles feature back in the future. He is also very good on Kick Returns as we found out. In Week 5 the Eagles were playing the Washington Redskins on the road. In the second quarter the Eagles were trailing 14-0 after a pair of Kirk Cousins passing touchdowns. Smallwood and Josh Huff were both back deep in the end zone to receive the kickoff from Redskins Kicker Dustin Hopkins. Smallwood caught the ball at the 14-yard line and continued to run up the sidelines 86 yards for the touchdown, untouched. It gave Eagles fans a sense as to just how explosive this kid can be.
2) Malcolm X to the house
The Eagles did not have an offensive touchdown in this game against the Redskins in week 6. It was their special teams and defense that got them on the board. With 4 minutes and 5 seconds remaining in the second quarter the Redskins had the ball on the Eagles 38-yard line. Cousins took the snap, dropped back and the pocket collapsed immediately as Fletcher Cox and Vinny Curry were in his face. He tried to get the ball to Vernon Davis on a short route. Eagles Safety Malcolm Jenkins came across and intercepted the football. He returned it up the sidelines untouched for the 64-yard Pick 6. Tying the game at 14. It wouldn’t matter, the Eagles would go onto lose 27-20.
1) Josh Huff shifts the momentum
The Minnesota Vikings came into this game undefeated with one of the most intimidating defenses in football. Former Eagles QB Sam Bradford had led this team to a 5-0 start. In the second quarter Vikings kicker Blair Walsh kicked 48-yard field goal to give the Vikings a 3-0 lead. 49 seconds later Walsh would be kicking off to Eagles return man Josh Huff. Walsh sent one flying and Huff caught it at the 2-yard line. He accelerated up the sideline and the only person in front of him was Blair Walsh. Huff cut back and eluded the tackle and went the rest of the way untouched, ending his brilliant play with a somersault into the end zone for a touchdown. Huff’s 98-yard kickoff return touchdown gave the Eagles an 8-3 lead (Carson Wentz ran it in for the 2-point conversion) and shifted the momentum 100% towards the Eagles. They would go on to win the game 21-10.