Well, they won. It may not be the prettiest win of all time, but there are no glamour points in the standings. A ugly win counts just as much as a pretty one. But you can still judge the individuals based on how they played despite the W. Some players showed up and showed out. Other guys look like they were either late to the stadium, or never showed up at all. Whose stock is on the rise, and whose is sinking? Here is your post week 5 Eagles Stock report.
Stock Up- Darius Slay
Slay had an amazing game, and let’s be honest, he has been great all year. The biggest knock on him in his time here has been the lack of playmaking. Today, not only did he shut down DJ Moore when shadowing him, but he also snagged two picks. One of those interceptions, was a extremely impressive athletic display. Slay has been shutting the door on every no 1 WR he has faced. The Eagles problem has been when these guys get matched up vs safeties and linebackers. But anyone Slay covers is shutdown. The Eagles defense has had its issues. Slay is not one of them.
Stock Down- Nick Sirianni
Coaching might be the team’s biggest problem right now. A good coach adjusts when something is not working, and a good coach comes prepared with a game plan that is designed to take advantage of the other team. Sirianni did not do either of those. First, he decided to attack the super speedy Panthers defense with swing plays, and Screen passes. The problem was the Panthers D was so quick to get to the edge, none of those plays went anywhere. In the end the Eagles averaged only .2 yards per screen pass. But he kept going to those plays. I wasn’t until the last few drives they changed that up, and lo and behold once that happened they scored two TDs. Sirianni needs to do better game planning, and adjusting.
Stock Up- Javon Hargrave
A few great games might be a coincidence. Hargrave playing this dominant, in five straight games, is no coincidence. He is genuinely one of the best DTs in the NFL, with only Aaron Donald being the competition so far. He got his 6th sack in 5 games vs the Panthers. That leads all defensive tackles. Javon Hargrave has played at an elite level every single week. He has had at least one sack in every game so far. Javon is a star, and a genuine candidate for defensive player of the year.
Stock Down- Miles Sanders
Sanders touched the ball 16 times in the game. 11 carries, and 5 catches. He had 51 yards total. Barley 3 yards per touch. On rushes, he had 45 yards. Which on the surface is over 4 yards a carry, which is decent. But 22 of those yards came on that final drive. For the rest of the game, he averaged 2.8 yards per carry, and 2.2 yards per touch. And speaking of that final drive, he made the bone headed choice to run out of bounds while the Eagles were trying to kill clock. There are two things you can’t do in that situation, fumble, or stop the clock. It ended up not hurting them, but had they not been able to get a few first downs, it could have meant the Panther got the ball back with more time, and more timeouts. That’s also on Sirianni for calling outside runs, but Sanders needs to know the stay in bounds.
Stock Down- Jalen Reagor
Reagor has now played in 16 games. In those games, he has only 48 catches for 536 yards. That is not the stat line of a first round pick. To make it worse, Justin Jefferson, the WR taken a pick later, has over 1800 yards, 121 catches, and 10 TDs. He has played 5 more games, but 5 games of the production Reagor has given so far wouldn’t put a dent in those gaps. Reagor has shown a couple flashes, but as of yet, he looks closer to a bust than a star.
Not a great opening for #Eagles WR Jalen Reagor:— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) October 10, 2021
- Takes back kick three yards deep and doesn't get to the the 25
- drops pass
- holding penalty on third down (declined)
Stock Down- Eagles Kick Returners
Both Quez Watkins and Jalen Reagor have returned kicks for the Eagles so far this year. Neither have looked any good at it. Reagor had one nice kick return where he got it to the 44 yard line. Every other return attempt has pinned the Eagles behind the 25 yard line. There have been 6 times one of these two fielded a kick from inside the end zone. Not one of those 6 got back to the 15. Quez has 5, and on average makes it to the 16 yard line. One was a muffed kick that only made it to the 11. Even if you take that out, he still only makes it to the 18. Reagor returned it twice from the end zone today. He got to the 22 and the 19. At this point, they’d be better off only taking touch backs.
Stock Up- Team Discipline
Only 6 penalties. Sure one took a TD off the board, but hey progress. The Eagles came into the game leading the league in penalties. They still lead the league in penalties, by quite a lot, but this week did help narrow the gap. Now they need to keep avoiding those yellow flags. Dumb, self inflated mistakes has been the Eagles biggest problem so far. Penalties have taken 5 touch downs away. But at least this week, they improved.
Stock Up- Andre Dillard
You know whose name didn’t come up a single time all game? Andre Dillard. No sacks allowed, no QB hits allowed, and and no penalties. He only allowed one pressure. Dillard just did his job. Three solid games as a LT in a row. Last week he had a penalty issue, but even still, he was not getting beat as a blocker. Before the season, people were viewing Dillard as a bust. Now? He looks like a starting Tackle. Will he be a star? Too soon to tell. He has played pretty damn well so far. Jordan Mailata is still the future at LT. He got paid to guard the blind side, and if and when Lane Johnson is back, Mailata will go back to LT. But until then, they have a solid fill in. And after he goes back to bench, he is either a reliable back up, or a trade piece.
The highest-PFF graded pass blocking Eagles offensive lineman for yesterday's game against the Carolina Panthers: Andre Dillard. Dillard gave up no sacks, a hurry and a pressure.— Chris Franklin (@cfranklinnews) October 11, 2021
Stock Down- Greg Ward Jr.
The only production Ward has had is a couple TDs in garbage time. Against both the Chiefs, and the Cowboys, he caught a TD after the game was already over. Otherwise, he has been a non factor. Today, he was worse than a non factor. Ward had a obvious OPI that took a Devonta Smith TD off the board. Just blocked a corner without even trying to sell he was running a route. Ward had been a reliable bench WR the past few years. This year he is not even that.
Stock up- Fletcher Cox
There had been a lot of heat towards Cox coming into this game. He had not been very productive. He spoke to Tim McManus last week, and seemed frustrated with his role on the team. Well something changed, because Cox had his best game of the year. Not only did he finally get a sack, but he had several other QB hurries. If he can play like that, along side Javon Hargrave, it will go a long way to helping this defense keep up the great play from this game.