Cowboys Erase 10-Point Deficit, Down Eagles in OT
Eagles Armchair: Pederson's Warts Show in Primetime Loss

Eagles Report Card: A Disaster of a 4th Quarter Dooms Eagles

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Up by 10 in the first quarter, the Eagles looked like they were on their way to an important win against a division rival. The Cowboys had other ideas.

Dallas stormed back, tied the game and won in overtime, 29-23, bringing the Eagles record to 4-3 on the season.

Here are this week's grades.

Pass Offense - B

Carson Wentz was kind of in between in this game. He was better by the numbers, but there were throws that could have been better. There were passes that could have gone different directions, deeper instead of a short screen. That's not all on Wentz, who is running the plays as called, but the rookie quarterback did a lot of things well, but showed there is improvement needed too.

There were drops, there were poor decisions. The Eagles can learn a lot from this loss.

Run Offense - C

Darren Sproles was very good. Ryan Mathews ran in a touchdown. But the grade takes a big hit for Wendell Smallwood's fumble. It's another untimely turnover that helped swing a game. As the Eagles grow into a team that wants to be a contender, those turnovers and mistakes simply can't happen.  

Pass Defense - C+

It was an up-and-down game for this group that ended as bad as can be. The Eagles pass defense was at its best when they were in the face of Dak Prescott. When he was under pressure, this group succeeded. And they had started to find that at the end of the fourth quarter, and completely abandoned it in overtime.

The secondary is still shaky and the pass rush seemed to pick its spots to apply the necessary pressure to disrupt Prescott. All-in-all, it seemed like a fairly comfortable game for Prescott, which only hurts the performance of the Eagles pass defense. 

Run Defense - C+

They didn't do a horrible job against Ezekiel Elliott, but he was able to unleash some big gains against them. When the game was on the line, this unit looked just as lost as the pass defense, which disrupted a pretty good game from them.

Special Teams - B-

Caleb Sturgis was essentially the MVP in this game. He just keeps making his kicks. The Eagles also nearly got another kickoff return for a touchdown from Josh Huff.

But the game turned thanks to the special teams, unsuspecting to a fake punt that saw punter Chris Jones pick up 30 yards on the ground and extend a scoring drive for the Cowboys. That was the play that started the turnaround for the Cowboys.

Overall - B-

The Eagles did not have a great first half and came away with a lead. The third quarter was their best. The fourth quarter was their worst.

Overall, being in a position to win and gradually improving over the first 45 minutes, the Eagles were in position for a very good overall grade.

What is disappointing is the way the coaching staff handled this game. The Cowboys rookies made a big impact on this game. Wentz had a solid game as well. But the rookie that had the biggest impact on the game was rookie coach Doug Pederson.

The playcalling was off the entire way through, and a horrible third-down call that knocked the Eagles out of field goal range with a chance to go back up by 10 was the game-changer. The Cowboys put together a 90-yard touchdown drive to tie the game right after that decision. 

This team has a lot to learn going forward, and that goes for the coach as much as the players.

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