For the second straight week, the Philadelphia Eagles suffered a frustrating defeat. They once again suffered a stretch of really poor football only to rally and have a chance to get the win against a very good football team. The good news is the team has shown great resiliency and there have been some bright spots. The bad news is that recurring issues continue to hurt them and moral victories are worthless, especially with the spot the team has put itself in. Let's look at the studs and duds from another disappointing Sunday.
STUD: Carson Wentz
Look, Wentz didn't play a perfect game. He again committed a turnover with a fumble and nearly threw an interception. He completed just over 50% of his passes (21-40) and there is still plenty of room for improvement. But make no mistake about it, Wentz also kept the Eagles in this game.
Playing behind a makeshift offensive line, Wentz was running for his life all afternoon and was sacked six times. His receivers let him down several times with inexcusable drops, and there was a point where the only original offensive starters left were Wentz and Jason Kelce. Under those circumstances, it's miraculous Wentz was able to generate any offense at all let alone 28 points. He continued to make improbable escapes, made some really nice throws, generated a huge play with his legs, and led the Eagles to 22 fourth quarter-points as he nearly led the comeback. Again, there is plenty Wentz can improve upon, but given the circumstances he produced a really good performance on Sunday, playing tough, gritty football and leading the team in the way you want to see from your quarterback.
DUD: Nate Gerry
The broken record plays on as Gerry was again a disaster. He was constantly out of position, continually getting beat in coverage, and he took an absolutely atrocious route to the ballcarrier on a key third down play that prevented him from making the tackle short of the marker. It's impossible to believe that there isn't somebody out there that could do a better job, and the fact that the Eagles keep trotting Gerry out there is mind-boggling. Enough is enough.
STUD: Malik Jackson
The defensive line had its work cut out for it in dealing with an electric quarterback like Lamar Jackson, but Malik Jackson stepped up big time. He was all over the field, finishing with four tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, a sack, and two QB hits. As the defense continues to struggle, Jackson came up big on Sunday.
DUD: Zach Ertz
Ertz's struggles continued Sunday. He caught just four of 10 targets for 33 yards as he and Wentz struggle to click. With the Eagles as banged up as they are, it is imperative that Ertz steps up, and so far he hasn't done so.
STUD: Travis Fulgham
The Travis Fulgham breakout continued on Sunday with the receiver grabbing six catches for 75 yards and a touchdown. Fulgham did have a drop on a tough Hail Mary attempt, but it was a difficult catch and, unlike some other Eagles receivers who have had drop issues over the last few years, Fulgham acknowledged after the game that he should have made the catch. That's important for two reasons. One, it's nice to see some accountability instead of excuses that everyone can see are nonsense. Two, and more importantly, it shows the confidence and expectations Fulgham has for himself, something the Eagles have lacked at wide receiver. Even with the miscue, Fulgham was the most productive receiver on Sunday and he continues to step up at a position where the team desperately needs consistent production and a consistent threat to make plays.
DUD: John Hightower
Hightower did have a 50-yard reception on Sunday. Unfortunately, it was his only reception of the day on four targets and he was responsible for an absolutely brutal drop that may have cost the Eagles a touchdown. Not only was the drop a pass he 100% should have caught, but it came at a time when the offense was really struggling to generate anything and a completion in that spot could have been the spark they needed. If Hightower makes that catch, perhaps the offense gets going much sooner than it ultimately did and perhaps the outcome of the game is different. You just can't have missed opportunities like that, especially considering the injuries and the position the Eagles are in through six weeks.
DUD: Jamon Brown
The offensive line wasn't great on Sunday, and Brown was a big reason why. Now, it's hard to be too rough on the unit when the team is this far down the depth chart, but Brown was a disaster, there's just no way around it. I won't subject you to the misery of his miscues here, but if you are a glutton for punishment simply search Brown on Twitter. You'll find plenty of still shots of Brown standing aimlessly by himself while Ravens swarm the backfield. There was also the play where he basically sacked Carson Wentz himself. Not good.