Three Takeaways from Eagles Loss to Lions
The Philadelphia Eagles are undefeated no more. They lost to the Detroit Lions at Ford Field in Week 5 by a final score of 24-23 — turning the ball over twice in the final three-minutes of the game. Philadelphia’s record stands at 3-1, and the Eagles are now a half-game behind the Dallas Cowboys for first place in the NFC East after five weeks of football.
Things interesting quickly for the Eagles, as they travel to play the Washington Redskins , who have won three straight, in Week 6. It will be interesting to see if they can put together a better performance than they did on Sunday.
Eagles head coach Dpug Pederson was disappointed after the game, but he emphasized how their mindset needs to improve heading into the next game.
"I mean, it’s still a good football team and we’ll learn from these mistakes," Pederson said. "We’ll learn from the penalties and the missed opportunities and get ready for next week.”
Here are my three biggest takeaways from the loss to the Lions:
3. Defense played poorly in first half
There is no question that the Eagles defense has been a bright spot so far this season, but they did not come to play in the first-half of the game. The Eagles defense surrendered 21 first half points, 199 total net yards and 17 first downs in the first half.
Pederson discussed the defense, acknowledging that Detroit looked like they had more energy in the firs half of the game.
"Felt like Detroit in the first half was maybe a half step ahead of us a little bit and then in the second half we got together and they did an outstanding job," Pederson said.
The defense did tighten up in the second half of the game, holding the Lions to just three points, 45 yards, and four, first downs in the second half. On the season, the Eagles defense has yet to allow a touchdown in the second half, and just six points overall.
2. Detroit running backs tough to stop
The Eagles defense did a good job of getting after Stafford, sacking him four times on the day. However, it was Theo Riddick who gave the Eagles some issues, catching the ball out-of-the-backfield twice for scores.
Riddick along with Zach Zenner combined for eight catches for 56 yards and two touchdowns in the game. The Eagles linebackers were suspect in coverage, but it seemed once Bradham was entered into the line-up in the second half, things tighten up. Bradham had gotten into trouble during the bye week, but Pederson said that had nothing to do with his playing time.
“No, not at all," Pederson stated. "Definitely wanted to get (Stephen) Tulloch some more reps tonight early in the game and then keep Nigel and Jordan (Hicks) fresh and healthy as the game went on.”
1. Penalties a big factor
Make no mistake, the Eagles played a sloppy game, they were penalized 14 times for 111 yards in the game. However, the discrepancy in penalties is a little ridiculous. The Lions were flagged just two times for 18 yards.
Pederson admitted that was a factor in the game.
“That’s tough, it’s tough to overcome, but I thought they hung in there," Pederson said when asked about the number of penalties. "Again, didn’t point any fingers to anybody, accepted their responsibility and moved on. Did a nice job of trying to overcome a few setbacks, kept us in some 3rd-and-longs that we didn’t need to be in. We’ve just got to learn from it.”