By: Andrew Kulp | NBC Philadelphia
The Eagles didn’t necessarily blow the Giants out like the 34-17 final score might suggest (see Roob’s observations). They were relentless, however, like waves crashing against a rock for centuries. Every time another player left with an injury, every time New York appeared to be on the verge of seizing the momentum, the tide turned back in the Eagles’ favor.
Given the talent that was on the field, it doesn’t get any better than that. Great grades all around.
Carson Wentz: 23/40, 289 YDS, TD
Not a classically great game in some ways with a 57.5 completion percentage and the lone score, but Wentz continues to do more with less. Averaging 7.2 yards per attempt while taking only one sack with no downfield threat is a feat in itself, and for the fourth straight week, no interceptions. Even if the numbers weren’t there, he did lead four scoring drives of 53 yards or more.
Boston Scott: 19 CAR, 54 YDS, 3 TD, 4 REC, 84 YDS
Miles Sanders was rolling before exiting with an ankle injury, rushing nine times for 52 yards, but after he exited, it became the Boston Scott show. All 5-foot-6, 203 pounds Scott bullied his way into the end zone from seven, two and two yards out, handling nearly the entire workload in Sanders’ absence (minus one decoy snap for Jordan Howard). He also led the team in receiving yards with no fumbles.
Wide receivers and tight ends
Joshua Perkins: 4 REC, 50 YDS, TD
Greg Ward led the team with six receptions (for 43 yards), while Dallas Goedert topped all receivers and tight ends with 65 yards, including a tightrope grab along the sideline. But it was Perkins’ 24-yard touchdown that got the Eagles into the end zone for the first time, and they never looked back. Deontay Burnett also became the latest practice squad superstar with his two receptions for 48 yards, including a diving 41-yard grab. Anybody count a drop here?
With Lane Johnson shut down and Brandon Brooks exiting late in the second quarter – only a couple of Pro Bowlers and the whole right side of the O-line – the Eagles overpowered the Giants anyway. They didn’t quite dominate on the ground, averaging 3.9 yards per rushing attempt, though they won in short yardage situations. Pass protection was fantastic, on the other hand, allowing five quarterback hits and one sack in 43 dropbacks. Just one penalty, too.
Derek Barnett: 2 TFL, 2.0 SK
Tremendous effort up front. Barnett led the way, registering four quarterback hits, while Brandon Graham and Tim Jernigan each notched a sack and at least one tackle for loss – Graham had three! Anthony Rush made a stop in the backfield as well and Fletcher Cox recovered a fumble at the Giants’ 2-yard line. And, aside from a 68-yard run, New York running backs carried 17 times for 28 yards for a paltry 1.7 yards per carry.
Nigel Bradham: 10 TKL
Bradham would probably like to have that 68-yard run back, as he was pushed downfield like a tackling dummy until the back went by. Otherwise, the unit cleaned up, with Nathan Gerry pitching in five tackles and T.J. Edwards getting in the box score with one. Again, the Giants couldn’t run the ball but for one big play, a credit to the linebackers finishing.
Malcolm Jenkins: 8 TKL, TFL, PD, FF
With the starting corners out – again – the defensive backs the Eagles had showed up and made plays. Jenkins’ hit on the quarterback to jar the ball free and take over at the Giants’ 2-yard line effectively ended the game. Cre’Von LeBlanc had a huge fourth quarter, ending with eight tackles and two pass breakups. Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas each had three breakups, with Jones hauling in a late interception. The lone blemish was a bad angle by Rodney McLeod on the big rushing TD, which is forgivable under the circumstances.
Jake Elliott: 2/2 FG, 4/4 XP
Sharpest game in awhile for Elliott, who was perfect with field goals of 31 and 50 yards. Cameron Johnston was solid as well, downing three of seven punts inside the Giants’ 20-yard line.
Eagles’ record: 9-7
It would take too long to list the injured players who either didn’t play or exited this game, but we all know the names are many and distinguished. Yet the Eagles won their fourth straight, this time in convincing fashion, and are heading into the playoffs with all the momentum in the world. The coaching staff reinvented the offense with Wentz and a bunch of practice squadders. The defense suffers the occasional setback, but has held six of its last eight opponents to 17 points or less. Credit to the coaching staff for taking a team that was 5-7, didn’t look good and almost nobody believed in and somehow giving the regular season a magical finish.