In Week 1, the Philadelphia Eagles offensive line looked nothing like what the front office imagined back in the spring. Injuries wiped out the season for guard Brandon Brooks and left tackle Andre Dillard. Sunday, right tackle Lane Johnson also didn't play against the Washington Football Team due to an ankle injury.
Needless to say, against the likes of Ryan Kerrigan, first-round pick Chase Young, Montez Sweat, Jonathan Allen, DaRon Payne, Matt Ioannidis, et al., the revamped blocking group struggled.
Washington's stud-filled defensive front sacked Carson Wentz eight times and allowed just 57 rushing yards on 17 attempts.
"I felt like we were never really able to establish the run game very well," center Jason Kelce said, via the team's official website. "That's a combination of guys not executing. Credit to Washington of throwing some well-timed blitzes, but we got to be better. We got to be better up front. No excuses."
"I think I've had plenty of work with the guys who were out there today and I don't think anybody in particular played an individually terrible game," he added. "That's probably not what you guys want to hear, but I think everybody kind of had their chances to screw this one up. I think myself included. I could have played better, and I think everybody across the board had their moments where they could have got the job done better."
The Eagles came out clicking, building a 17-0 lead, but then it fell apart in the second quarter and everything unraveled.
Beginning with Wentz's first INT, the Eagles began to sink in the quicksand and never recovered. On the final 11 drives of the game after taking their 17-point lead, Philly's offense generated 95 total yards, seven first downs, and eight of those possessions lasted three plays or fewer.
Wentz started strong but fell in love with the deep shots. Given the offensive line injuries, the QB admitted he needs to be smarter with the football. Wentz should have taken safer underneath throws to move the chains, particularly when things began to spiral out of control. Wentz completed just 57 percent of his passes with 2 TDs, 2 INTs and the eight sacks -- not all of which were fault of the O-line.
"I've got to be better, I know that," Wentz said. "We came out offensively feeling good. We moved the ball right down the field, put up points, got ahead in the game ... I've gotta clean up the interceptions. I put our defense in a bad spot on a couple of occasions. We definitely lost some momentum and we didn't make the plays we needed to make.
"I've got to be better. It starts with me. I've got to protect the ball and lead these guys better and I'll own that."
To overcome the loss, Philly needs Wentz to elevate his play for the next 15 games. Luckily for the Eagles, the NFC East continues to look wide open, so hope for a turnaround is not lost after one week.