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Who Balled & Who Stalled: Eagles’ Key Grades for MNF vs Saints

In a match where all of the Eagles’ problems seemed to prevail, the Eagles lost 28-13 to the Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on MNF. In a poor performance by the Birds, there were few bright sparks and many poor showings, but regardless, here are the Ballers and Stallers from the Eagles’ MNF loss against the Saints:

Baller: LeSean McCoy

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Photo via PE.com

LeSean has had a dry run of games before this week in terms of rushing yards, and this has not necessarily been due to his lack of carries. However, this notion of Andy Reid to give the ball to McCoy so little is starting to rustle the feathers of Eagles fans. LeSean McCoy is an All-Pro Running Back in the NFL, and he does not have the carries that he deserves.

Not only would more carries help him out, but also it would help the team. However, Reid continues to trust the pass far more often, and this is questionable considering Michael Vick’s form. But back to McCoy, and he did have a good game for the limited carries he had. On 19 carries, McCoy had 119 yards at an average of 6.2 yards per carry. This is more of what we expect from Shady, and if could be run more in the end zone his TD numbers would be high like last season. A good night’s work from LeSean, and hopefully he can have a few more of these as the Eagles try to recapture playoff hopes.

Overall Grade: A

Staller: Demetress Bell

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Demetrius Bell (Photo via AP)

The Saints DE’s combined for 6.0 sacks on Monday night, and Bell was the Tackle that truly struggled. With Herremans now out injured from RT, Demetress Bell may have to switch sides for the rest of the season to the right. He is shockingly bad at his ‘natural’ left side, so how is he going to cope with the right?

Eagles fans deserve to name the offensive line injuries as an excuse for this team’s performances. Vick is getting pressured nearly every play, McCoy is struggling on the inside routes, and to be honest, the coaches can’t seem to get Bell or Dunlap to improve. This unit is in complete and utter chaos.

Overall Grade: D

Baller: Jason Babin

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Babin celebrates a sack (Photo via BleacherReport)

What happened to the once-destructive Defensive Line of the Philadelphia Eagles? Is Jim Washburn losing his touch?!?!

From sack machine to sack-clean, this team has struggled mightily to get the QB on the ground this season. However, on Monday night, Jason Babin had 1.0 sack and a forced fumble to cap off a great personal night for him. He also got some good pressures and seemed to carve through the Right Tackle with ease. Babin needs to keep this type of production up in order to save this wilting Eagles defense that was once so strong.

Overall Grade: A-

Staller: Michael Vick

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Mike Vick with Andy Reid (Photo via US Presswire)

If Andy Reid was truly starting Vick on a game-by-game basis, you would think that Nick Foles would have his turn soon. Although Vick can pull off big runs and 77-yard TD throws, he cannot seem to do the basics and fundamentals well. He is throwing into big coverages, tight spaces, and everything that a good QB does, he doesn’t do. His pass accuracy on MNF, 53%, was also very poor.

I must admit, Vick has been tortured and pressured by opposing blitzes through this paper-thin Offensive Line, but regardless of that, Vick has had some opportunities to pass and the execution has just not been there, such as the 99 yard Interception return for a TD that he gave up in the end zone.

Vick needs to cut back the turnovers, cut back the double coverage throws, and he needs to hand McCoy the ball more often. If he can do at least some of that with consistency, Vick may lead this team back into Playoff contention. But that might just be wishful thinking.

Overall Grade: C-

Baller: DeSean Jackson

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DeSean Jackson (Photo via US Presswire)

In all honesty, apart from the 77-yard open TD catch that he finished well, DeSean was relatively quiet on Monday night, with 23 yards on 2 catches excluding the big play. However, these long catches are what you would call his specialty, and it is good to see Vick and D-Jax with another deep connection.

To help Vick out, DeSean Jackson needs to start getting out of his cuts and into open spaces fast. With the little time that Vick has in the pocket, the coaches need to pick the right plays, but It comes down to execution, which Jackson can usually be trusted for now that he has his contract.

Overall Grade: B

Staller: Eagles’ Tackling

Some of the tackles that this team miss are just appalling. Whether it’s Marshawn Lynch in beast mode or Mark Ingram being a rookie, opposing RBs seem to run over this team with ease. Run defense was a serious issue last year, and with the new linebackers in this team it was expected to improve. However, much of the poor tackling has been from the secondary.

Players like Kendricks and Ryans have been trustworthy tacklers, but DRC and Nnamdi have become known for making weak attempts at tackles and letting runners through without effort. This happened on multiple occasions on Monday night, as the Saints RBs ran for large yard per carry averages.

 Overall Grade: D+

So thanks for reading, check out our Twitter, @KhandymanSports, and our Facebook page by clicking hereFeel free to comment with your thoughts on the team and be sure to share this post around to fellow Eagles fans!

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Categories: Eagles, Editorial, NFL

Author:Will Eddowes

20 y.o Kiwi. Passionate about the NFL, both on the field & in the front office. Budding scout & salary cap analyst - Law and economics student at VUW - Also write for http://Overthecap.com.

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