Three Men To Blame For Eagles Embarrassing Loss to the Cowboys
On Monday Night Football, the Philadelphia Eagles organization embarrassed themselves in front of a national audience with their plethora of Penalties and Mental Errors. As I wrote about last week, the Eagles cannot win games if they keep playing this unacceptable style of football. Many people want someone to blame after the Eagles lost to the rival Dallas Cowboys, so today I will pull back the curtain and give you the main three people to blame for that ugly performance on Monday Night:
*Eagles Head Coach Nick Sirianni: "Mr. Fundamentals and Accountability"
-For the second straight week, Nick Sirianni failed his players and the Eagles organization with a poor game plan. Eagles Running Backs had Three Rush Attempts for 29 Yards versus the Cowboys after they totaled 43 Rush Attempts over the first two weeks. Eagles' Tight Ends have a total of 22 Targets in Sirianni's first three games as the play-caller and that number is not just low but unacceptable considering that those Tight Ends are named Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert. Contrast the Eagles Tight Ends' 22 Targets with the Dallas Cowboys whose duo of Dalton Schultz and Blake Jarwin have 25 Targets this year.
Sirianni's offense looked to be firing on all cylinders Week One in Atlanta but the first-year Head Coach has forsaken what they were successful with versus the Falcons and decided to go with some embarrassing play calls versus the 49ers then Cowboys. He is putting his 23-year-old Quarterback in difficult situations and with now seven starts, Jalen Hurts is being asked to be a playmaker instead of the offense putting the ball into the hands of the real playmakers like Miles Sanders, Devonta Smith, Dallas Goedert, and others.
We heard all offseason from Sirianni about preaching Fundamentals and Accountability but in the first three weeks of the 2021 NFL season, the Eagles have committed 35 Penalties! They average the most Penalties Per game in the league with 11.67 per game. That's a clear sign of lacking discipline and Sirianni can say all he wants is that he has to do better, but actions speak louder than words.
Sirianni's staff is also missing Accountability in terms of leadership: Almost all of his coaching staff are young and inexperienced. When Sean McVay was hired to be the Los Angeles Rams Head Coach at 31 years old, he hired Wade Phillips as his Defensive Coordinator along with Veteran NFL Coaches John Fassel and Greg Olson. The most veteran member of Siriani's coaching staff is holdover Offensive Line Coach Jeff Stoutland. Most young coaches have older coaches on the staff to help them as a first-time Head Coach and drive their message home with the locker room, but Sirianni's staff wears a T-Shirt that talks about the Head Coach principles instead of preaching it to their players.
*Eagles Defensive Coordinator Jonathan Gannon: "Defensive Coaching Prodigy"
-After allowing 23 Points over the first two weeks of the season, the Eagles Defense got thrashed by the Dallas Cowboys for 380 Total Yards and 34 Points on Monday Night. The Eagles are one of four teams in the NFL with zero interceptions this season and their two total turnovers are fifth-worst in the NFL. Gannon got his NFL Defense apprenticeship under Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer and Colts Defensive Coordinator Matt Eberflus but his defense had a Jekyll and Hyde turn versus the Cowboys from what they were the previous two weeks.
Gannon's Defense was limiting opponents to 162.5 Passing Yards per Game before Dallas accumulated 220 on Monday Night; Also the first two weeks the Eagles Defense was allowing 120.5 Rush Yards per game but against Dallas, they got ran over for a total of 160 Rushing Yards. Gannon got outcoached by the Cowboys Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore and on the field, Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott manipulated the Eagles Linebackers and Defensive Backs all night long. If I didn't know any better, it appeared that the Eagles Defense was not prepared for the Monday Night Football matchup. I'm not sure what Gannon thought was going to happen to play a soft defensive zone against a smart Quarterback. Prescott ripped through that Zone Coverage and Gannon did not adjust in-game or in the second half.
*Eagles Owner Jeff Lurie: "The Progressive Futurist"
-The Eagles Owner has always prided himself being ahead of the curve and the major reasoning behind hiring Head Coaches like Andy Reid then Chip Kelly to Doug Pederson and now Nick Sirianni was based in Lurie wanting to have innovative offensive minds as his Head Coaches. Lurie has wanted to ensure his teams don't get left behind as the NFL continues to evolve Offensively in the aftermath of high-powered passing offenses becoming mainstream in the 1990s and earlier 2000s. Lurie wants his teams to win and will go as far as authorizing his organization to spend big in free agency, make trades, along with his infamous involvement in the Draft Process each year.
Lurie is the Eagles Owner who has fired two of the best four Head Coaches in franchise history: Andy Reid is going to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame someday and Doug Pederson led the organization to their only Super Bowl Championship. The "Progressive Owner" of the Philadelphia Eagles has explained when letting go of Reid and Pederson how the organization wanted to go in a different direction. After firing Chip Kelly, Lurie said he was looking for "Emotional Intelligence" and when the Eagles hired Nick Sirianni, he took no questions from the media, gave his manifesto for about 17 minutes then left the Head Coach alone in front of a Zoom Call of reporters to field questions he was ill-equipped to answer.
The Eagles Owner seems to think he embodies the "Manifesto of Futurism" by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti. According to the Italian Poet, "Futurism" is the rejection of the past and a "celebration of speed, machinery, violence, youth, and industry" while advocating for modernization and cultural rejuvenation. Lurie is the "Man Behind the Curtain" for the Eagles organization, putting his faith and trust in Howie Roseman because they have similar points of view. There are reports that Lurie wanted to fire Frank Reich after the 2016 season and that Lurie insisted the Eagles Draft JJ Arcega-Whiteside.
What we know for sure is that he insisted on moving on from Doug Pederson and handed the keys to the car to Nick Sirianni to hire a coaching staff that lacked almost any veteran coaches. Sirianni is being forced to learn on the job and we can only hope he learns from his mistakes; That is Lurie's fault because he didn't want the Super Bowl Winning Head Coach and instead wanted the "shiny new toy" in Nick Sirianni.