Thursday night’s game of the Eagles against the Steelers was a disappointing game for any Eagles fan. The team was demolished by a score of 24-14. The coaching was missing in action, the players were definitely unimpressive, and this team didn’t look like the usual Eagles.
To start, the Eagle’s most important player, Michael Vick, played one of the worst games of his career. He had a 13.5 quarterback rating, and for those of you who aren’t familiar with the numbers on that chart, Matt Leinart has a career 70.8 rating. He threw three interceptions and completed five of 12 passes for 47 yards.
Despite Vick’s woes, there was some hope on the first team offense. LeSean McCoy, the team’s star running back came to play. McCoy finished with 25 yards on just four carries. That’s an average of 6.4 yards per carry, which is an extremely impressive number.
The two other bright spots on the team were second year quarterback Mike Kafka and rookie running back Dion Lewis. Kafka threw for 160 yards on 15 of 19 passing. He also had 14 and seven yard touchdown passes to Gerald Jones to bring it within 10 points. Kafka showed off his mobility by taking off a few times after a collapsed pocket for a total of 24 yards. He showed a confident side of him that I had never seen before.
Dion Lewis ran for 19 yards on two carries and caught a couple passes for 48 yards. He was returning to his home city after coming straight out of college from the University of Pittsburgh. LeSean McCoy also played in Pitt and grew up in the city.
One of the biggest failures on the Eagles behalf was their coaching. On offense, they could not move the ball on this team. Also, the Steelers were able to disguise coverage well without many challenges. They blitzed with and caused pressure by reading the Eagles weak points.
The Eagles didn’t seem to bring much out of their playbook though. They didn’t run one running back screen until there were five minutes left in the game, which is the team’s bread and butter.
The Eagles were also poorly coached on defense. This side of the ball looked unprepared, and overmatched. The Steelers took advantage of the Eagles when they blitzed, and when they didn’t. The Eagles would send six or seven guys in on a blitz, and the Steelers would just dump it off, but turned it into a huge gain.
The defensive line didn’t get much pressure, and you can put that responsibility on the coaching. The defensive ends got good rushes off the edge, but the opposition recognized that and had their quarterbacks play higher in the pocket.
The Eagles were being killed in the first three quarters, but came alive under the arm of Mike Kafka. Kafka made the stats look very comparable, even though they were tremendously lopsided after three.
Overall, the Eagles were tremendously unimpressive up and down their roster. They were outcoached, outplayed, and outmatched.