On Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field, the Patriots and Eagles battled in a rematch of Super Bowl 52. However, this time around the Patriots would win 17-10. This game was a defensive battle, unlike Super Bowl 52, which ended with the Eagles winning 41-33.
In Super Bowl 52, Eagles WR Nelson Agholor had a solid game as he caught nine passes for 84 yards, and yesterday with the Eagles trailing 17-10 late in the fourth quarter, Agholor had a chance to tie the game, but Carson Wentz’s pass in the end zone went off his fingertips and incomplete.
“It would have been a heck of a catch,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said on Monday. “The angle he was on, and I don’t know if the wind moved the ball at all, but he was having to bend back over his shoulder. It would have been a spectacular catch if he’d have got it. I’m sure he’s beating himself up for not making that play.”
It would have been a great catch. However, Agholor can’t be faulted for dropping that pass. Wentz was under pressure and had to throw it up for grabs, and Agholor just could not hold onto the ball. You can blame a few things on Agholor in 2019, but what happened yesterday is not on him.
On Sunday, the Eagles were able to defeat the Bears 22-14 to move to 5-4. However, some bad news came from the game. WR DeSean Jackson re-aggravated his abdominal injury and had surgery on Tuesday to repair it. Philadelphia announced today that they have put the 32-year-old Jackson on injured reserve.
With Jackson out, the Eagles will be without their deep threat and their most dangerous wide receiver. For now, and barring any moves, the Eagles will have to go with the likes of Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor. Mack Hollins, and J.J. Arcega-Whiteside.
Against the Bears on Sunday, both Jeffery and Agholor were fairly quiet, and Jeffery struggled with drops against Chicago.
When asked to assess Jeffery and Agholor in 2019, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson has this to say.
“I think overall, they have been good, but I would say they haven’t been great,” Pederson said on Monday. “I think they would echo that. I think Alshon yesterday had some opportunity and had chances, and I believe he would own up to that to make some of the catches that he missed yesterday.
“So he’s a professional about it, and Nelly is the same way. I think, too, we just have to continue to work with these guys. Every week is a new week. Every week is a new set of challenges. As we put game plans together, we do think about these guys and putting them into positions and look, sometimes you get in the game, and I’m the one calling the plays and sometimes the game kind of steers a different direction than what you think during the week.
“But I think overall, these guys have been in a position to help and help us win, and have a lot of confidence in both those guys moving forward.”
Unfortunately, the Eagles are going to have to rely on Jeffery and Agholor, and if they are fortunate, maybe they can find a solid wide receiver off the street.
If we are talking just talent, Antonio Brown would be great, but who knows how soon his situation would be sorted out. Also, guys like former Eagles WR Jordan Matthews and Torrey Smith are available, which might work the best considering they are familiar with the system.
Philadelphia will need another receiver, and it should be fascinating to see who they find to replace Jackson for the rest of the season.
Philadelphia Eagles WR Nelson Agholor has had a rough couple weeks. He dropped a possible game-winning touchdown in Week 2 against the Falcons, and last Sunday against the Lions, he lost a fumble and had one of the team’s seven drops as Philadelphia(1-2) lost to Detroit 27-24 at Lincoln Financial Field.
Even with those miscues, Agholor has managed to put some decent numbers. The fifth-year player had 16 receptions for 157 yards and three touchdowns in the past two games, and while Agholor did struggle with drops earlier in his career, he has managed to work through those struggles to become a solid wide receiver in the NFL.
“I think you can define [WR] Nelson [Agholor’s] career as being resilient,” Eagles offensive coordinator Mike Groh said on Tuesday. “He’s always had the self-confidence to bounce back and to move on to the next play, whether it be good or bad, and obviously he made some really good plays over the last couple weeks. What does he got, something like 16 catches or something like that in two weeks? He’s had a lot of production, and obviously, there’s some plays that everybody — and that starts with me — that all of us wish that we had over and could do better. We’ve got a lot of confidence in Nelson Agholor, and he’s going to be one of the reasons we win a lot of games.”
With Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson in street clothes, Carson Wentz needed all the help that he could get, and when your team has seven drops, that is not helping your quarterback. Football games are not won or lost by one play, and while many fans want to blame Agholor, he is not the only reason the Eagles lost to the Falcons and Lions.
At this point, there is a lot of issues in Philadelphia. They are not getting after the quarterback, they are not protecting the quarterback, and their secondary is struggling. However, it’s still early, and they have time to fix things. In the end, Agholor is the least of Philly’s issues.
Eagles WR Nelson Agholor had a lot of struggles with drops earlier in his career. However the past two seasons, Agholor has become a reliable receiver for Philadelphia and has shown the ability to make a lot of the plays for the Eagles.
But, last night against the Falcons, with the Eagles trailing 24-20 late in the game, Agholor had an opportunity to put the Eagles in the lead. The fifth-year player was wide open and let a perfect pass from Carson Wentz go right through his hands. Agholor would redeem himself later in the drive by catching a 43-yard pass from Wentz on a big fourth down play. But it was not enough, as the Falcons defense would stiffen and Philadelphia would loss 24-20.
Agholor would finish the game with eight catches for 107 yards and one touchdown, but obviously, that won’t overshadow his big drop.
Today, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson discussed Agholor’s drop against the Falcons.
“Yeah, I talked to [WR] Nelson [Agholor] after the game just before we got on the bus to go to the airport and one, I thought he played really well,” Pederson said. “Really well from — he played, basically, two spots yesterday, having to move around, and it just shows his mental capacity with the offense and where he is.
“He made some outstanding catches yesterday, as well and then I told him after the game, one play is not going to define him or our season. It’s Week 2 in the National Football League, and we have a bunch of football left, and he’s a great player for us. I told him just to keep his head up, keep working, and we’re going to find more ways to win these games than lose them going into the future.”
Drops happen in the NFL, but this drop may haunt Agholor for a little bit. Hopefully, for Philadelphia, this drop won’t come back to hurt the Eagles this season.