Grayson’s Grades: Eagles vs. Commanders
The Philadelphia Eagles needed overtime to beat the Washington Commanders 34-31. Jalen Hurts threw a beautiful pass to AJ Brown in the endzone to give the Eagles a lead in the final two minutes of the game. The Commanders scored on the final play of regulation to force overtime and Jake Elliott booted a 54-yard field goal to win it.
The offense struggled early in the game and started putting it together in the second half while the defense also had its struggles on third down. The Commanders converted nearly half of their third down attempts. The Eagles also need to clean up some issues with penalties. They committed 11 penalties for 80 yards and gave the Commanders five first downs by penalty.
The Eagles improve to 4-0 on the season and still have a lot to work on and clean up heading into next week's game in Los Angeles against the Rams.
Here is the latest edition of Grayson's Grades:
Jalen Hurts - Hurts had a pretty good game statistically. However, he missed a few throws downfield that could have really blown this game up. He missed D'Andre Swift after he beat a linebacker on a wheel route. Hurts also missed an open DeVonta Smith in the first half that could have gone for a huge gain. That being said, he did connect with AJ Brown on some big plays and had to contend with a decent pass rush by the Commanders. Hurts completed 25 of 37 passes for 319 yards and two touchdowns. He also carried it nine times for 34 yards.
Nicholas Morrow - Morrow is really playing well. He racked up some big sacks in this game. In fact, he had three of them and said afterwards he has never had three sacks in a game at any level from high school through the NFL. Morrow does a nice job of wrapping up the ball carrier. Rarely do they get away from him after the initial hit. He was second on the team with 11 tackles with three sacks, three tackles for a loss and three quarterback hits.
AJ Brown - Brown racked up his second straight big game. He did a great job of tacking on a lot of yards after the catch once again. Brown's biggest play came in the third quarter when he caught a pass in stride, shook off a defender and then used a couple of key blocks ahead of him as he crossed back over the width of the field to score a 59 yard touchdown. Brown had a monster game catching nine passes for 175 yards and two touchdowns.
DeVonta Smith - Smith continues to show off an amazing ability to make a catch. His biggest grab came in the second quarter. Smith was in between three defenders and leaped high in the air, bobbled it and still made the catch as he hit the ground. Smith caught seven passes for 78 yards.
D'Andre Swift - Swift had a hard time finding some running room in this game. He only had six carries for 20 yards in the first half. Swift added eight carries for 36 yards in the second half. Swift beat a linebacker on a wheel route and was breaking open down the sideline. He was interfered with throwing off the timing, but that could have gone all the way if Jalen Hurts managed to hit him with the pass. Swift averaged four yards per carry. He tallied 56 yards on 14 carries with a touchdown.
Brian Johnson - I felt this was another game where Johnson struggled to get his offense into a rhythm. They seemed dedicated to getting the pass game going and did not do enough of what they had done well in the past which was run the ball. There were opportunities for big plays in the air. They connected on some, but also missed on others that were there. Johnson also calls some Quarterback draws at bad times that don't make sense. I don't like Hurts getting those hits and really don't like those calls on third down. Despite all of those criticisms, he did call the right plays down the stretch that saw his offense put some big points on the board in the final two-minutes of the game.
Offensive Line - The offensive line had more trouble with the Washington front than I expected. Jordan Mailata got beat by Chase Young several times allowing him to force Hurts out of the pocket. They also struggled to get the running game established in the first half. Clearly they made some adjustments because the running game did better in the second half. That allowed the passing game to come along as well. This line has been dominant and l expect they will continue to be throughout the season.
Sean DeSai - I did not expect the Commanders to move the ball as well as they did in this game. I believe they were helped by some ticky-tack pass interference and late hit penalties called against the Eagles. However, they gave up some key third-down conversions and missed a few tackles. The Eagles cannot allow that many points and that many yards with that many third down conversions to a team like the Commanders. Washington put up 365 total yards of offense. The Commanders also were 8 of 17 on third down and 2-for-2 on fourth down.