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Bucs crush Eagles as Jameis Winston throws five TDs

The Philadelphia Eagles (4-6) needed a win over the uneven Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5) at home to stay in the NFC East playoff race. Instead, they were subjected to an old fashioned beat down in a 45-17 loss.

Here's what we learned...

  1. If culture beats scheme every day, Chip Kelly needs to find a way to foster the type of environment where his players get up for big games. Maybe it's not that simple, and there were certainly some schematic issues we can point to when explaining the loss. But when a team almost surrenders a franchise rushing record to their opponent -- Doug Martin initially had 240 yards on the ground, edging out Emmitt Smith and Jim Brown for the most rushing yards against the Eagles ever before losing five yards on a carry that gave the record back -- it speaks to more than a sputtering offense starting a backup quarterback. The Eagles were outmuscled, they fumbled the ball after they were hit too hard and they did nothing to challenge Tampa Bay's cadre of wide receivers, which brings us to our next point.
  1. Jameis Winston threw five touchdown passes on Sunday, which tied a rookie record. He threw touchdown passes in the red zone to receivers that weren't effectively jammed or contested at the line, and each of his scores were to a different receiver. Watching Winston play is fun. What people say about his confidence is true and it's probably the reason he'll edge out his competition for Offensive Rookie of the Year. But Winston also has a very good team being built around him, and all of the credit in the world goes to general manager Jason Licht. If that offensive line can come along as planned -- the team rolled without the services of second-round pick Ali Marpet on Sunday -- this could be the start of something wonderful in Tampa.
  1. Kelly will tell us to relax because the Giants only really have a one-game lead in the division and they have plenty of good teams left on their schedule. The Eagles also get Detroit on Thanksgiving. The visual at the end of Sunday's game, though -- Mark Sanchez and Darren Sproles arguing, players dropping passes, Sanchez floating screens that were returned to the house by the Bucs -- makes us wonder if the problem is Kelly. This has been a team largely devoid of emotion this season. Without the firecracker personalities, who is left to stand in the middle of this locker room and bring everyone together?
  1. Though the Eagles are still on pace to have roughly the same amount of snaps as they did a year ago, does it look to anyone like the tempo and rhythm of this offense have been completely dismantled? It's not hard to understand what Kelly was thinking when he built this team, but the beauty of it is completely gone. The running game cannot be established to the point where receivers are just streaking down the field like they used to. His adjustments during the 10-day gap after Thanksgiving should be fascinating.
  1. There are certain ways one can tilt their head when looking at Tampa's remaining schedule and at least make it interesting. Next week they face the Andrew Luck-less Colts, followed by a huge divisional matchup against the Falcons. Let's revisit the praise of Lovie Smith and Jameis Winston then.
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