Merrill Reese's call of Jake Elliott's 61-yard game-winning field goal is incredible
ITS GOOOOOOD!! Eagles Vs. Giants Recap

Eagles Report Card: Eagles-Giants

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Well how's that for a finish?

It came down to the wire, but Jake Elliott's walk-off 61-yard field goal gave the Eagles their second win of the season, improving them to 2-1, and sent the Giants to 0-3 on the season.

Here are this week's grades for the Eagles in their dramatic and exciting win over the Giants.

Pass Offense - B

Carson Wentz had what I would call a very clean day. His numbers really tell a lot of this -- 21-for-31 for 176 yards and one touchdown with no interceptions. Wentz was under pressure a lot, sacked three times, and that hurt the Eagles passing offense. But ultimately, the Eagles were in position to do big things in the game really at all times.

There were really two glaring mistakes in the passing game in the entire 60 minutes. The first was the 4th-and-8 debacle. It was already a huge risk to go for it on 4th-and-long. The play call was just horrible and set Wentz up for failure, taking a sack that ultimately pushed the Eagles backwards and gave the Giants even better field position.

The other was the lone turnover of the game. Zach Ertz picked a bad time to lose the ball on a fumble, setting up the Giants again.

But from Wentz's perspective, this was a solid game and his pass to Alshon Jeffery with seven seconds to play was the perfect set up to Elliott's heroics.

Jeffery and Ertz proved to be reliable targets for Wentz, as were Torrey Smith and Nelson Agholor in the limited targets they saw.

Related: Constructive on Carson: Wentz puts Eagles in position for magical win

Run Offense - B+

Let's be fair, I don't want to go overboard on the grade here, but this was a much-improved showing for the rushing offense.

LeGarrette Blount was excellent, utilized perfectly and playing with a chip on his shoulder, no question. Blount averaged 5.6 yards per carry and scored a touchdown. Wendell Smallwood also turned in a nice game, leading the Eagles with 71 yards on 12 carries, averaging 5.9 per carry.

I really like Corey Clement. I have since the preseason, and he picked up a solid 11-yard touchdown run to even things up in the fourth quarter after the Giants had scored on three straight possessions.

This is what a balanced offense can look like when the running game is utilized more and done effectively. To put up 193 yards on the ground is a big accomplishment. Eagles fans should want to see more of that moving forward.

Pass Defense - B-

Again, perspective here. The Eagles played the entire game without much of a secondary and were without their top two defensive players for the second half. To come out victorious at all is a minor miracle.

Yes, Eli Manning was protected well, got into a rhythm and put up good numbers -- 366 yards and three touchdowns. But the secondary managed two interceptions that helped keep the Giants completely off the scoreboard for three quarters.

This was a really good game for some younger players. Rasul Douglas seemed to be everywhere, and got his first career interception in his first career start. The rookie didn't look out of place, a good sign of things to come for the third-round pick. Jalen Mills played Odell Beckham Jr. well for the most part through three quarters before the fourth quarter finally caught up to him. Patrick Robinson had a strong game with three passes defended and an interception.

It did start to turn into the Eli Manning-Odell Beckham show as the fourth quarter progressed, but the Eagles defense as a whole didn't budge for three quarters, not even as adversity with injuries started to hit.

Run Defense - A

So Doug Pederson makes a questionable call to go for it on 4th-and-8 as the second quarter is starting to wind down. The Giants get the ball down to the one-yard line on 3rd-and-goal, go for it on a pass and have the ruling go against them. The Eagles run defense provided the play of the game -- outside the field goal to end it -- on 4th-and-goal.

There's too many names to mention for credit on this play. This was a cohesive unit pushing back on the offensive line and not allowing any progress. 

The Giants as a whole managed 49 yards on 17 carries in the game, including a 20-yard run. I'd say that's a success.

Special Teams - B+

Jake Elliott wasn't perfect -- he missed a 52-yard field goal earlier -- but man, that 61-yard field goal, the longest in Eagles history, was quite a way to endear yourself to a fan base.

It's the 61-yarder that everyone will be talking about, but Elliott also had to connect from 46 yards just to tie the game up. He was also perfect on extra points.

Donnie Jones opened the game with a strong punt that should have been ruled down at the one or two-yard line, but was deemed a touchback even after review. Despite that, good play all around by the special teams unit.

Overall - B

Most of this game was ugly, for sure.

The Eagles played a solid game that didn't translate on the scoreboard near as much. They survived a bone-headed moment from their head coach to hold a 14-point lead going into the fourth quarter. Then the Giants started to heat up with a touchdown drive, took advantage of a fumble to tie and got the lead. 

Give the Eagles a ton of credit for the finish. They battled, they got the game tied up, trailed again after holding the Giants to a field goal and perfectly executed the final two minutes of the game

This, to me, was where you saw Carson Wentz at his finest. He navigated a drive that put them in position to tie the game. When the Eagles got the ball back with under 20 seconds to play, he managed to get a play off that put the Eagles just outside field-goal range with one second left and nothing to lose by attempting the long-distance kick.

Jake Elliott did the rest by playing hero.

What makes it an impressive win? It's a divisional opponent. You cannot put a value on these games. For the Eagles to be 2-1 through three games with both wins coming within the division is a huge accomplishment. The Giants are essentially on their heels already. The Eagles have proven they can compete with the Redskins. The Cowboys will be their ultimate test when that comes up later this season.

For now, enjoy this one, because it was quite a way to open the season's home schedule. 


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