Eagles overreactions: Future lessons from bizarre Cowboys season finale

The Eagles misplaced a sport they weren’t making an attempt to win on Saturday evening, falling to the Cowboys at residence and ending the 2021-22 common season with a 9-8 report. Nick Sirianni selected to place his backups on the sector in opposition to the division rivals, so the end result wasn’t actually vital, however that does not imply we won’t be taught from what we watched.

Listed below are three spicy overreactions to a bizarre sport earlier than we begin waiting for the postseason:

1. The Eagles’ offense is greater than one working again

I have been fairly vocal in my perception that the Eagles shouldn’t carry again Miles Sanders after his rookie contract expires, and we have had loads of proof this season that they’ll make any working again with even gentle expertise look good in Nick Sirianni’s modified offensive system – you understand, the one he is been working since he remembered working the ball is sweet.

And Saturday evening was yet one more reminder that the Birds can run the ball with or with out Sanders.

Jason Huntley obtained his first prolonged look of the season on Saturday vs. Dallas’s starters, and was surprisingly efficient with quantity. He ran 13 occasions for 51 yards, constantly bringing burst on inside runs and when he bounced it exterior.

Kenny Gainwell additionally ran roughshod over Dallas’s protection, carrying the ball 12 occasions for 78 yards, and regarded each bit the draft evening steal all of us thought he was.

Total the Eagles ran 33 occasions for 149 yards and a landing, and regardless of taking part in an all-backup offensive line with out their uber-mobile QB they have been super on the bottom as soon as once more.


That is simply who the Eagles’ offense is now: an unstoppable working machine.

And it is why investing severe monetary assets in a single working again is a horrible concept, until he is a really game-changing again like a Derrick Henry or a Nick Chubb or a Dalvin Prepare dinner. Sanders is ok, however he’s actually not a game-changer.

I hope this run-first offense continues, as a result of it is clearly working. And I hope the Eagles are sensible sufficient to comprehend they’ve a ton of various expertise on the RB place on the roster.

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2. Gardner Minshew wants to remain an Eagle subsequent yr

The ESPN broadcast mused Saturday evening as the sport was beginning that Gardner Minshew would in all probability be traded this offseason.

Minshew wasn’t unbelievable on Saturday vs. Dallas – he completed 19 of 33 for 186 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception that wasn’t his fault – however he performed effectively sufficient, and averted errors effectively sufficient, to maintain the Eagles in a sport in opposition to a Cowboys workforce that was actively making an attempt to win. And with out a shanked punt on the finish of the primary half, that is an excellent nearer sport.

I would prefer to put an official plea in to Howie Roseman: do not hearken to ESPN’s sales space. Convey Minshew again subsequent yr.


Consider all of the occasions you have watched backup quarterbacks go into video games and completely fall flat on their respective faces, lobbing interceptions all around the discipline or holding on to the ball perpetually and taking huge, drive-killing sacks. It is so irritating to know watch a workforce with sufficient expertise to remain aggressive get crushed by dangerous QB play.

Minshew is not a revelation on the place, however he’ll all the time give the Eagles an opportunity to stay in a sport lengthy sufficient to probably steal it if Hurts – or whoever the starter is subsequent yr – is out with an damage. He does not make dangerous selections, he avoids turnovers, and he could make the sensible and simple throws that preserve drives alive. If the Eagles subsequent yr are going to be working a run-heavy offense (and they need to be), Minshew can lead a run-heavy offense and preserve the Birds alive in principally any sport.

Oh, and in case you forgot, he is making lower than $1 million subsequent season.

He is precisely the sort of man the Eagles must be thrilled to have on their roster.

READ: Eagles’ Tyree Jackson suffers knee injury vs. Cowboys


3. The Cowboys do not strike me as actual contenders

Jerry Jones and the Cowboys’ decision-makers made it clear earlier than Saturday’s sport that they needed their starters to see important motion as a result of they needed to win and vie for the No. 2 seed within the NFC.

After which they have been barely higher than the Eagles’ second- and third-string gamers. It was 30-20 late within the third quarter.


The Dallas offense largely regarded prefer it was in cost, which is what you’d count on from an explosive unit that set a franchise report for factors scored in a season. However the cracks have been there. 

Dak Prescott, even in opposition to backup defenders, straight-up missed throws he should not miss. There was no cause he could not have gone with out an incomplete go on Saturday; the Eagles’ backup secondary was leaving his targets completely large open.

Ezekiel Elliott nonetheless appears to be like like he is misplaced a step, and I would not be nervous about holding him beneath wraps within the playoffs.

And the Dallas protection? Do not get me began. What a questionable exhibiting, giving up 17 first-half factors to a workforce of backups.

The narrative this season has been a story of Dan Quinn fixing their unit, however exterior of Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs’ interceptions (which is able to regress to the imply and expose his basically flawed protection) it feels just like the Cowboys’ D is ripe for a letdown sport in opposition to a respectable workforce. They’re permitting the ninth-most dashing yards per try within the NFL, they rank twentieth within the league in go yards per try in opposition to, and their High 10 scoring protection rating is a bit skewed because of their power of schedule.

I like Prescott’s sport and I just like the Cowboys’ weapons at large receiver and tight finish, and clearly Parsons is particular, however as a workforce Dallas does not say contender to me.

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