If week 1 was an ugly win, that was a very sexy win in week 2. Everything worked. And Jalen Hurts looked the best he has ever looked in an Eagles uniform. The defense dominated what was hyped coming into the game as a top NFL offense. You couldn’t have asked for any more from this team tonight. So how did it all go down? Here are 5 numbers that tell that story.
Hurts threw just 5 incompletions tonight. One was a pinpoint pass to Dallas Goedert through traffic that he dropped. Another went off the hands of Kenny Gainwell and into the hands of the Vikings. There was only one pass I noticed all night from Hurts that I felt was anything other than perfect. Accuracy has been one of the biggest slights against Hurts his entire career. And until now, the numbers backed those criticisms up. But tonight he completed 83.9% of his passes. Nearly every throw he made was on the money. The most impressive of which was a deep shot into the hands of a wide-open Quez Watkins for a TD. Hurts earned himself a break from any shots at his accuracy.
Jalen Hurts is first player in NFL history to have:— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) September 20, 2022
300+ passing yards
80.0+ completion %
Rush for multiple TDs
The Vikings found themselves in the Red Zone 4 times all night. They scored on only one of those chances. Just a 25% success rate. A huge knock on the Eagles’ D in week 1 was bad Red Zone defense. Well, that Red Zone defense was elite tonight. They not only kept them out of the endzone, they forced turnovers to prevent even a field goal attempt. You can even add a fifth time where the Vikings started from the Eagles’ 30 after the blocked field goal. Three times tonight the Vikings were in striking distance, and this defense came away with a pick. Oh, and while we are on the topic of things they sucked at last week and great at in week 2, the Vikings were just 4 of 12 on third down.
The Eagles got production from everyone tonight. In fact, 6 different players generated more than 50 yards tonight. Hurts had 57 yards on the ground. Miles Sanders produced 80 rushing yards on 17 attempts. Dallas Goedert led the Eagles with 82 receiving yards. Devonta Smith was not too far behind with 80. And Watkins and AJ Brown each had 69 yards. On top of that, 4 other players touched the ball tonight, and they combined for 59 total yards through the air and on the ground. This is a dynamic offense, with lots of players who can hurt you.
A narrative that has followed Miles Sanders in his career is that he dances too much. And while that dancing occasionally lets him break a big run, there were too many negative plays. Well tonight, there was just 1 negative run from him. Out of 17 rushes, he lost yards on just one of them. His impact on tonight’s game was a bit understated. He didn’t have any huge game-breaking runs. But all night he was dependable. That is a big step for Sanders.
Coming into tonight, Justin Jefferson had just 7 games where he was kept under 50 yards. Well after facing the Eagles, it is now 8. Jefferson finished the game with just 48 yards after he led all WRs in yards in week 1. All week all we heard was how impossible the task of guarding Jefferson would be. Well, Slay seemed up to it. Slay didn’t shadow Slay all game, but when he did, he won. Slay also came away with two picks, and should have had more. He is the only player with a claim to the game ball apart from Jalen Hurts. He was an All-Pro corner tonight. Jefferson and Kirk Cousins will be seeing him in their sleep.
Darius Slay vs Justin Jefferson tonight:— PFF (@PFF) September 20, 2022
🔒 6 targets
🔒 1 catch allowed
🔒 2 INTs
🔒 0.0 passer rating allowed pic.twitter.com/fINrs3rQ48
*Bonus Number*- 63%
John Kincade read off this stat before the game, and it bears repeating now that they won. Since 1990, 63% of teams that start 2-0, go on to make the playoffs. Furthermore, 62.5% of Superbowl Teams, started the season 2-0. That is 35 of 56 Super Bowl Champs, who started the exact same way these Eagles have. It’s worth mentioning that one of the 21 teams that won despite starting 1-1, was the 2017 Eagles. This is the first Eagles’ 2-0 start since 2016, a year they broke the trend and did not make the playoffs. But still, the Eagles have given themselves great offs to be playing into January.