5 Observations on the Eagles Loss to Tampa Bay
The Eagles season came to a predicable end on Sunday against a team that is just in a different place in the NFL hierarchy right now.
The defending Super Bowl champion Buccaneers, dominated the Eagles in every facet of the game Sunday afternoon en route to a 31-15 win on Wild Card Weekend.
Going into the game a lot of the conversation was about the Eagles No. 1 rush defense against the Bucs top-ranked rush defense. However, the Bucs sent eight and nine men in the box for much of the game and challenged Jalen Hurts and the Eagles pass offense.
Hurts and the offense made a ton of mistakes leading to a blowout loss. The second-year QB finished 23-of-43 passes for 258 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions, adding eight carries for 39 rushing yards.
"This game does not define us," Hurts said after the loss. "It does not define who we are. We know all the different things that we've overcome, the environment that we've built...we'll be back."
Here are 5 observations on the game.
1. There’s no way around it, this was an embarrassing performance for the Eagles. They were outcoached and outclassed in all three phases of the game.
Nick Sirianni, who had a solid first season, was very conservative in the game, and made very few adjustments, leading to just 17 yards in the first quarter and being shutout in the first half.
He wasn't alone, Jonathan Gannon was very passive and allowed Buccaneers receivers to have a field day in front of his passive secondary.
Add in Jalen Reagor's special teams muffed punt and the Eagles have a clear indication of why they are home for the rest of these playoffs.
2. The Eagles deferred after winning the coin toss, allowing the Buccaneers to get the ball and set the tone of the game, and they did.
Tom Brady and their Tampa offense marched right down the field and scored, to put Philadelphia down 7-0. Philadelphia went three-and-out on their first possession and really never was able to get their offense going.
Slow starts have been a major issues this season, Sunday was no different.
3. Down 17-0 with a chance to get back into the game before the half, Jalen Hurts tried to fire a pass to DeVonta Smith, whose defender fell down, but he hesitated, which allowed safety Mike Edwards to comes over and get in front of the pass for an interception in the end zone
At worst Philadelphia could have had three points and the ball at halftime, instead they found themselves down 17-0 at halftime.
4. While the Eagles couldn't get points to end the half, they got the ball back to open the third quarter, with little success. They open with a three-and-out , but their defense comes gets a spot of their own, forcing a Tampa Bay punt from their own end zone.
The punt was muffed by Jalen Reagor, giving Tampa the ball right back around midfield. Five plays later, Brady found Rob Gronkowski in the back of the end zone to make it 24-0.
Reagor has been a constant issue in the return game this season and it bit them again on Sunday. This is the play that really ended any hopes of getting back into the game, a demoralizing feeling for sure.
5. Down 24-0 and one last chance to try and climb back into the game, Hurts throws a interception on a 4th and 3 that gave the Bucs the ball again in Eagles territory.
On the very next play, Brady found Mike Evans for 31 yards and a score to make it 31-0, essentially ending the Eagles season.
"Its sad because its over," Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni said. "It hurts and it stings, because the journey of the 2021 Eagles is over and that team will never be the same again."