Grayson’s Grades: Eagles at Buccaneers
The Philadelphia Eagles remained unbeaten after dominating the Buccaneers in Tampa 25-11. The Eagles dominated every offensive category while forcing multiple turnovers and getting a safety.
This was still not a polished performance by the Eagles. They turned it over a couple of times, but the defense managed to make sure those turnovers did not result in points.
The Eagles are one of three NFL teams still undefeated. They join the 49'ers and Dolphins as the only 3-0 teams in the league. They host the Commanders next Sunday.
Here is the latest edition of Grayson's Grades:
AJ Brown - Brown had his little spat on the sideline against the Vikings. He and the team downplayed the incident. Clearly the team did put it behind them because Brown had a monster game. He caught nine passes for 131 yards. About half of those yards were after the catch.
D'Andre Swift - Swift followed up a huge performance with another one. He was hitting holes and moving the ball once again. Swift averaged a whopping 8.1 yards per carry. He rushed it 16 times for 130 yards. I like Swift's patience waiting for holes to open and his vision to find some open lanes once he is in the hole. He also caught one pass for eight yards.
Olamide Zaccheus - Zaccheus will not get many touches so he really has to take advantage of the targets when they come. He did just that in this one as he broke just beyond a defender and caught a 34 yard touchdown pass. Zaccheus did a great job of focusing on the ball and following it into his hands as it was nearly deflected by the defensive back underneath his pattern. He caught two passes for 58 yards and a touchdown.
Dallas Goedert - Goedert played his role perfectly in this one. He made some nice catches over the middle and helped move the chains on some key plays. Goedert was targeted seven times and caught five of those passes for 41 yards.
Jalen Carter - If you listen closely during Eagles games you can almost hear the GM's who passed on Carter in the draft. The guy is emerging as a frontrunner for Defensive Rookie of the Year. He has a high motor and seems to succeed at blowing up plays on almost every snap. Carter showed great hustle after a short pass behind him, he turned and chased the receiver down and successfully punched the ball out forcing a fumble that was recovered by James Bradberry. Carter has adjusted to the NFL well through three games and I look forward to seeing more of what he can do as the season continues. He finished the game with two tackles, half a sack and one quarterback hit.
Nicholas Morrow - Morrow had one of the biggest plays by this defense. After Jalen Hurts threw an interception at the Bucs two yard-line, Morrow rushed up the middle and made a tackle in the endzone for a safety. At the time it put two points on the board and gave the Eagles offense the ball back. They responded by tacking on a Field Goal, so it was five straight points. Morrow recorded two tackles including two tackles for a loss.
Reed Blankenship - Blankenship is proving why he earned the starting nod at Safety this year. He flew in and jumped a route in the first half and picked off a Baker Mayfield pass. That interception came on the possession immediately following an interception by the Bucs. Blankenship has great instincts and you can see that he is trusting those instincts more and more. He led the team in tackles with seven including one tackle for a loss and one pass successfully defended.
Brian Johnson - Johnson showed me what I wanted to see coming off the mini-bye. I saw a better rhythm developing with the offensive play-calling and the ability to dominate the Bucs defense on the ground and through the air. Keeping the Bucs defense on the field when it was 90 degrees and felt like 101 was a key in this one. The Eagles ran 78 plays for 472 yards and had the ball for nearly 39 minutes or about two-thirds of the game. They suffocated the Bucs with a stifling 15 play 68 yard drive that milked the final 9:22 off the clock after Tampa Bay cut it to a 14 point game.
Sean Desai - Like Johnson, Desai seemed to be starting to get into a rhythm with his play-calling on defense. I like the times and the designs of a couple of his blitzes. I also like the way his defense swarms to the ball. This defense has now forced eight turnovers through three games. That is not by accident either. In the auditorium at the NovaCare Complex is a banner showing various ways to try and force a ball loose. His players are embracing that and seeing the results. The defensive line is blowing up the line of scrimmage and holding opponents to minimal damage on the ground. The Bucs managed just 41 yards rushing in this one. The defense held the Bucs to just 174 total yards and 12 first downs. They also forced two turnovers and recorded a safety.
Nick Sirianni - Sirianni was 0-2 in games after playing on Thursday night. He bucked that trend and saw his team dominate the Bucs. Sirianni had the Eagles ready to play and clearly the coaching staff did spend some time in the mini-bye doing some self scouting. They looked prepared and fired up. They also played with high energy despite the heat. This was not an easy win against a pretty good team on the road. Sirianni has led his team to a 6-0 record in September over the last two years.
Kenneth Gainwell - Gainwell missed last week's game due to sore ribs. He returned against the Bucs and averaged three yards per carry. Gainwell was not able to find quite the same amount of running room as Swift. He sees a hole and hits it sometimes before it is fully open. It would be great if some of Swift's patience would rub off on Gainwell because I think it could help him rack up even more yardage.
Jalen Hurts - Hurts has still not had that great game yet. But as he said, getting the win is the most important thing and he did that here. Hurts did lead the offense to 27 first downs, more than 400 total yards and they dominated time of possession. He threw a pair of interceptions in this game. One of them was a miscommunication with his receiver. The other was deep in Tampa Bay territory. He looked better throwing the ball in this game than he did in the previous two so the trajectory is going in the right direction. Hurts seemed to make better decisions in the run game. He once again found the endzone and helped move the chains with successful 'tush-push' plays. Hurts completed 23 of 37 passes for 277 yards and a touchdown with a pair of interceptions.
Josh Jobe - The Eagles chose to address the injury to Avonte Maddox by putting James Bradberry in the slot and letting Jobe play on the outside. Jobe is young and inexperienced and the Bucs seemed to take advantage of that. He gave up several catches and allowed Tampa Bay to convert some third downs. I'm confident Jobe will get better with more experience. He also has two pretty good mentors to lean on in Darius Slay and James Bradberry. Jobe recorded four tackles in the victory.