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Todd Bowles: Eagles face 'messed-up situation' on D

Somewhere in the deep distance, Juan Castillo is smiling.

Ever since Andy Reid made his former defensive coordinator the scapegoat for the raging dumpster fire in Philadelphia, the Eagles have only stumbled deeper into the pit. Especially against the pass.

Castillo's successor, Todd Bowles, struggled to explain what his troubled secondary was up to in Monday night's 30-22 loss to the Carolina Panthers. Cam Newton torched Philly for 306 yards and two touchdowns -- and he made it look easy.

"The first (touchdown) was high school cover-3," Bowles said, via "The ball was thrown down the middle of the field. We gave up a touchdown. Inexcusable. The second one was inexcusable, too."

Both scoring plays preyed on an Eagles defensive backfield completely out of place. Cam's first score -- the 24-yarder to tight end Gary Barnidge -- was ugly, but it was topped by Newton's 43-yard strike to Brandon LaFell.

"The second long one was a bust," Bowles said. "It was inexcusable. Shouldn't have happened. Everybody knew where they were supposed to be. They weren't there."

Bowles called it a "messed-up situation," a deadly accurate assessment.

Opposing quarterbacks have thrown 13 touchdowns and zero picks since Bowles took over. Passers were completing 52.3 percent of their passes under Castillo, but that's rocketed to 75.2 under Bowles. Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha is a man lost at sea of late. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has been better, but a secondary -- whether you're running press-man coverage or zone -- must operate fluidly. That isn't happening right now.

Asked for some sort of explanation on how an NFL defense could fail to pick up a high-school-level scheme, Bowles was a deer in headlights.

"I wish I could tell you," he said.

For an organization in need of clear answers, Bowles -- and Andy Reid -- have run out of words.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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