Somewhere the 1972 Miami Dolphins are popping their champagne bottles. The last remaining undefeated team in the NFL, The Minnesota Vikings, lost their first game of the season by the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles by a score of 21-10.
Two of the top teams in the NFL were facing off in what was expected to be a defensive struggle. It was evident that this was going to be a defensive game when both starting quarterbacks, Carson Wentz and Sam Bradford, combined for five straight turnovers during the first half.
The Eagles defense harassed Sam Bradford all day long, sacking him six times and keeping constant pressure on him all day long. The Eagles defense also forced three turnovers including two from Sam Bradford. The biggest stop came during the fourth quarter when the Eagles stopped the Vikings on consecutive short yardage situations, forcing a turnover on downs.
The Eagles’ Special Teams is continuing to prove that it is one of the best in the NFL. Josh Huff scored a 98 yard kickoff return touchdown for the first touchdown of the game. This is the second week the Eagles have scored a kickoff return for a touchdown. So far the Eagles are the only that has taken a kickoff back for a touchdown thus far.
Meanwhile Caleb Sturgis is slowly emerging as one of the best kickers in the NFL. He was 2-2 on field goal attempts on Sunday and is 14-15 on the season, converting 93.3 percent of his field goal attempts.
1.Defense- The Eagles defense had just been plain bad the past two weeks. It is a good sign for Eagles fans that they were able to respond the way they did. The Eagles pressured Bradford all day sacking him 6 times and hitting him 16 times. The Eagles defense kept the Vikings out of the end zone, The Vikings only converted one of their four trips to the redzone into points, and that came during garbage time.
2. Special Teams- As stated earlier the Eagles have one of the best Special Teams units in the league, and it showed on Sunday. The Eagles Special Teams had one kickoff touchdown, two field goals, and also forced a Vikings turnover.
3. Carson Wentz’s Composure- Yeah, Carson Wentz played poorly, throwing for only 138 and turning the ball over three times. Keep in mind Wentz is a rookie, he is going to have rookie moments, and what better time to get those rookie moments out of the way than against arguably the NFL’s best defense. This probably will not be the last time Wentz has a rookie moment during the season, but it is encouraging to see him be able to bounce back and lead several scoring drives to take the lead.
4. Penalties- For the past two weeks the Eagles had shot themselves in the foot with penalties. Against Detroit they had 14 and against Washington they had 13. This week they only had seven for 53 yards. When you double digit penalties during a game that makes it much more difficult to win. Penalties generally put your opponent in a better position to win the game.
This win should have most Eagles fans excited, but not as excited as next week’s game, Sunday Night Football, at Jerry World, against the Dallas Cowboys.