Dallas Goedert isn’t exactly outstanding, but he’s not far from it either. Since Rob Gronkowski quit football (for the second time), the tight-end power rankings have largely followed this pattern: Travis Kelce is one. Mark Andrews 2. 3. All other parties. However, there is a case to be made for ranking Goedert somewhat above most (if not all) competitors at the position. Just below the Kelce-Andrews Line. He didn’t have the best statistical game in the NFL on Thursday. But he was crucial to the Eagles’ closer-than-expected victory. He caught eight passes for a total of 100 yards and a touchdown. It seems like the Eagles called for that play to that man in numerous high-stakes scenarios in this game. And Goedert has been a screening machine this season. That was most definitely the case in Week 9.
He continued to deliver. A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith both had very quiet nights. So the Eagles’ offence was propelled by Miles Sanders’ running and the screen pass to Goedert.
Offensive Rookie of the Year favourite Dameon Pierce.
Pierce should be at the very top of your list because no quarterbacks are having successful first NFL seasons. And OROY favourite Breece Hall is out for the year. Pierce had a difficult game against the Titans on Sunday, but he quickly got back on track. Setting career highs for rushing yards (139) and carries (27). Without wide receivers Brandin Cooks and Nico Collins on the field, the Eagles tried to crowd up on Pierce. But Pierce still managed to outrun and evade his would-be tacklers for extra yards after contact. He might not be the league’s most exciting running back, and his receiving skills are still developing.
However, Pierce, who has a bright future with the group, is without a doubt the team’s cash cow. The Texans scored big in the fourth round. But Pierce might have moved up had Florida given him more than 100 carries in 13 games the previous year.
The underrated addition from the offseason was C.J. Gardner-Johnson.
It was understandable to question how long Gardner-Johnson might need to adjust to the system. And his new teammates after his surprise August 31 trade from the Saints to the Eagles. The response is roughly six weeks. For the Eagles in the first month of the season. He began and took part in nearly every defensive play without incident. But recently, his importance to this defence has skyrocketed. Gardner-Johnson now has five interceptions, which puts him in first place in the NFL, after his diving grab of Davis Mills on Thursday. He had five interceptions in his first 47 NFL games, and he’s added five more in his last four contests. It wouldn’t be a leap to say that he has been one of the top Eagles defenders over the previous four games if you include the sack he recorded last week against the Steelers.
Recently, Javon Hargrave has gone on a sack binge.
Mills wasn’t the fastest runner, but Hargrave had to go a fair distance to get to Mills on his first sack in order to make a meaningful third-down stop. When No. 2 also arrived on third down and smashed rookie guard Kenyon Green of the Texans. Who was driving toward midfield, Mills was downed for a loss. The Texans were driven out of the end zone on the third play after suffering a 9-yard loss. Which halted their momentum when the game’s outcome was still in doubt. Although Hargrave was given a roughing-the-passer call, it felt at most marginal. The basic reason is that he has been on a tear lately. Last week, he beat the Steelers (who declined to re-sign him) in retaliation and then destroyed Kenny Pickett for good measure.
As of right now, Hargrave has six sacks for the year, including five in the previous two contests. He is one of the top interior penetrators in the game and is making a strong midseason push for the Pro Bowl.
Jordan Davis was missed by the Eagles.
If there was one thing I really didn’t like about the Eagles’ performance on Thursday night. It was how weak the interior run defence was. There was a good reason the team used a first-round pick on Davis, a mass of humanity whose effect cannot be quantified by statistics like tackles (14), tackles for loss (one), or sacks (zero). But by filling up two holes with his size and strength. They got a good idea of how much Davis means on Thursday, particularly for a man who was averaging 22 plays per game. The Eagles understood they had to run the ball a lot against the Texans because of their severe receiver shortage. But Houston consistently found success running inside.
The earliest Davis could play again after suffering an ankle injury was in Week 13 against the Titans. The Eagles had best come up with some alternate strategies during the mini-bye as they will be facing some pretty talented backs between now and then.
Game’s Next Gen stat
The Texans’ 13-yard touchdown pass from Davis Mills to Chris Moore was completed at a speed of 16.04 mph. Which is the third-fastest speed by a quarterback this season.
With a victory over the Texans, the Eagles improved to 8-0 for the first time in the history of the team. Jalen Hurts has now won 11 straight starts during the regular season.
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