Monday, October 31, 2016

Eagles - Cowboys Diary

Hit With Head
> KR Lucky Whitehead with the bad idea return, crunching hit, fumble and absurd good fortune to keep it; probably the last time he takes it out tonight

> RB Ezekiel Elliott for 1, then QB Dak Prescott tries WR Dez Bryant on a hook where CB Nolan Carroll jumps it, and nice

> 3rd and 9 and set a tone early is Prescott to Elliott, who runs through two hits to get the first, and goddamn it, that was not good enough by Carroll and MLB Jordan Hicks

> From the 20, Prescott is taken down by LB Marcus "Increasingly Not A Total Bust" Smith for a sack, mostly coverage based

> Elliott for 2, then 3rd and 12 and get off the field please is a short ball to slot WR Cole Beasley, and that's not a bad start at all, really

> P Chris Jones sends one out of bounds, and Green starts at their own 38 in what has to be considered a good start

> QB Carson Wentz to WR Dorial Green-Beckham for the aggro slant and first down to start things, and that looked pro as hell

> From midfield, bubble screen to WR Josh Huff, who gets 9 on angry running

> 2nd and 1 and take a chance? is another screen to WR Jordan Matthews, who is tripped at the line; WR Nelson Agholor blew the block because he, um, blows

> Wentz tries to keep it, but LB Anthony Hitchens has seen this film and ends it, with LB Sean Lee taking away the binkie throw to RB Darren Sproles

> P Donnie Jones to to the 8, but Dallas had too many on the field, which is an awesome gift and quasi-turnover; Dallas STs are doing major help so far

> From the 39, Wentz sprints out and collects Matthews for 8, then a toss to Sproles, who hides and scampers for 14 yards; nice work by T Hala Vaitai, who I'm shortening for sanity

> The repeat doesn't work, and on 2nd and 11, it's Wentz to RB Kenyan Barner for the not really aggro 5 yard out

> 3rd and 6 from the 12 is a big money down, and Wentz hits Agholor on the hands, which is a tentative drop of I'm calling footsteps, and cut this piece of crap already

> K Caleb Sturgis connects, but Dallas runs into the kicker... but HC Doug Pederson keeps the points, so Green 3, White 0, and, um, hmm

> I get that the defense is playing great and a lead is the lead, but, um, hmm

> Whitehead kneels, commerce, then Elliott tries to hurdle LB Mychal Kendricks; um, nope

> Bryant beats CB Leodis McKelvin on a deep ball for 53 on what looks like, and is, an uncalled OPI push off on the smaller CB, but that happens all the time

> Corner blitz got stood up on that play, which also didn't help

> Prescott misses a back corner throw, then Elliott through a big hole, and DT Fletcher Cox got pancaked

> From the 7, Prescott keeps on a wide open zone read, and that's your standard 5 play, 75 yard drive that looked way too much like the DC game

> K Dan Bailey connects, 7-3 Whiteys, and so much for the good start

> KR Wendell Smallwood fakes a return and gives us heart failure, but wisely takes a knee, for the first of several terrible plays by him tonight

> Sproles taken down by the face mask with no call for a loss of 2, then Wentz fakes the back throw to Huff and short arms a screen to Sproles; not good

> LG Allen Barbre out, which also is Not Good; 3rd and 12 and hoo boy it's going away fast is a timeout to give the crowd more time to yell

> After clock waste, Wentz gets to Agholor, who is in front of the sticks, not open, and yeah, that's a punt and empty yards

> Jones to the 29, not one of his better efforts, but at least it's all net

> As NBC waves their Silver pom poms, Prescott barely escapes DE Brandon Graham to throw it away, who closed on him with a vengeance

> Elliott for 9, and that wanky wiggle thing is getting old fast

> 3rd and 1 and yeah, no chance is Prescott to Elliott, who outruns Hicks, and takes a delay flag for being an asshat

> Elliott again, beats McKelvin, hurdles, and I'm having Emmitt Smith flashbacks; this is not a good thing

> Prescott heaves it to Bryant, no good, but a flag anyway on CB Jalen Mills for a cheap chuck, like the offense needs help right now

> RB Alfred Morris to the 17 for 8, and this is going to end soon

> Run blitz works as Prescott doesn't check out, Graham having a night so far, and that's the first quarter

> Prescott overshoots Bryant as White continues to do Green a big favor by throwing it

> Bailey connects because every figgie hits against my laundry, and it's 10-7 Whiteys

> Touchback, checkdown to RB Ryan Mathews for a yard, rollout to TE Zach Ertz who doesn't make a man miss, and that's two completions for one yard

> 3rd and 9 and prevent the blowout is a slant to DG-B, perfect ball, actual catch, and that was big

> Flinch for five as Wentz is good at that, then audible out to Sproles for 2, line not doing enough

> 2nd and 3 and grind clock and move the damn sticks is a drop screen to Huff, with a flag to boot; long committee meeting gets us OPI on DG-B, which was a crap call, but hey, Dallas

> 2nd and 13 is Wentz to Matthews for 3, no separation from these clowns

> 3rd and 11 from the gun is Wentz not seeing the stunt, sack, sadness

> Jones to the 3, Whitehead takes it back for no reason, and a clip; White STs are as bad as can be so far

> Morris for 3 as Silver does the favor of rotating RBs, then Prescott shorts WR Terrance Williams as holding in the end zone for a safety is not called, as if that's ever called for the home team

> 3rd and 9 and keep field position is long clock is a screen to Elliott, who doesn't make four men miss, so not a first down; phew

> Sproles with a good return to the White 45, and the offense needs to do something right about now, dammit

> Mathews for 7 yards on an actual no deception power run (good!), then audible to Sproles, who gets 2+ off to the left on pinball trippery

> 3rd and inches is a big damn deal at the edge of figgie range when you need a touchdown, and it's inside to Sproles for 9 yards of good times; LT Jason Peters does the honors

> From the White 27, Wentz from an empty backfield hits Matthews on the hands inside the 10; drop

> 12 in the huddle because we can't have nice things, then a nice fake by Wentz and Sproles goes for 19 off great patience and burst

> From the White 13, formation trickery to empty, then a bullet to the very covered TE Trey Burton for six yards

> Mathews runs 20 yards to lose one, then on third and five and money it's Wentz with too much time, then hits Agholor on a Rodgers-esque move to get the first; massive flaggery and committee meeting is an incomplete pass, because Agholor can't keep his heel in; defensive holding makes it a first anyway

> From the 4 after the good flag, Mathews gets it nearly in from a shotgun run; that looked like a score to me, but he walks it in on a massively well-blocked stroll to the left, and after the Sturgis PAT, the game is tied

> Peters and Burton with textbook work there, and we've got a game, with Green time of possession edge so far, too

> Whitehead on the end around with shoddy work by DE Connor Barwin for a first, then Elliott for 12 more, and he's just all day misery; DT Beau Allen got worked

> Prescott with all day to throw, Bryant with all day to watch the throw get to him, and this is happening very quickly

> From the 24, Elliott suffers pain from LB Nigel Bradham for a yard, and that's the 2 minute warning

> Prescott to the 5 because holding the DT on containment isn't a thing for the home team, and Green calls a timeout so that after Dallas scores on the next play, there will be time left

> From the Green 7, Prescott tries to force feed Bryant, with McKelvin knocking it away nicely

> Prescott picked in the end zone by Hicks, and thank you, White, for not just giving the ball to your stud RB behind your best in class OL

> Terrible decision by Prescott, good read by Hicks, the WR wasn't open anyway, and yeah, that was Romo-esque

> From the 20 with 1 timeout and White holding 3, Wentz hits Matthews for 9, then Sproles for a few, a first, and a clock stoppage

> Wentz to Ertz for 5 fairly dumb yards, clock still moving a lot, then to Agholor for another first and more clock hell

> From the 44, Wentz to DG-B for 12, and the final timeout with 10 seconds left

> Figgie would be 61, so some yards and out of bounds is all kinds of necessary

> Incomplete to DG-G takes five seconds

> Wentz to DG-B for 7 yards, clock still has a second left, so that was useful

> From 55, Sturgis is iced before making it, then does it again, and that's a Green lead at the half, with the ball coming their way as well

> Outstanding work by Wentz and DG-B to get the yards needed to make the figgie possible, and to get the yards on a 4-second play

> Huff makes the mistake of trying to run out a short high kick, and Green will start at their own 8

> Barbre out with the hamstring issue, which isn't going to help

> Sproles on a toss for 9, big holes as NBC is worried about C Jason Kelce, for seeming cause

> Sproles loses a yard as the line doesn't get it done

> 3rd and 2 and need to not give up momentum and field position is Sproles again, but no blocking and ye gads, someone put a hat on Lee, he's their only LB that resembles a LB

> Jones to the White 25, Whitehead back to the 38, with a clip not being a clip after commerce, because Dallas

> 25 yards of gift field position for what was obviously a clip, but why not

> Elliott loses a yard on a run blitz into the draw, then Prescott dribbles a handoff but gets it back for another loss of two, because all fumbles bounce to Dallas

> 3rd and 13 and get off the field is a front of sticks throw to TE Jason Witten who is wrapped up ASAP by Hicks, and if the phantom flag had held up, really nice field position might have happened now

> Sproles with an ungainly fair catch at the 16, with a White chop block that, miracle of miracles, stays assessed

> Not to harp on this, but the clip that got picked up would have started this drive at the White 44, rather than the Green 31; kind of a big damn difference in terms of points expectation

> Sproles for 2 as Pederson stays very conservative, then quick huddle to Ertz for four yards

> 3rd and 4 from tempo is a shoestring catch by Matthews to move the chains, and that was pretty great

> Matthews on a dicey little screen for 4, more tempo, then a bullet to DG-B for 14 and a first

> White looking scattery, drop by Matthews, ridiculous late hit on Hitchens for a gift 15, and the seconds it took for the refs to throw that flag took decibels off my roof

> From the White 22, Wentz hits DG-B on the hands; drop for what should have been an easy first, especially with Wentz looking off pressure to get the WR open

> Gahhhh

> Wentz to Sproles, long developing for 4 yards on an outlet; Peters and Vaitai doing work

> 3rd and 6 and make money is Wentz to Agholor on a slant, who toughens up and wiggles for the first

> From the 11, Sproles pinballs to the 7 as Green steps up tempo again, but DE Jack Crawford takes a sucky knee

> From the 7 on 2nd and 6, Wentz to Agholor again on the weak cross for 2, with OPI to boot on Ertz

> 2nd and 16 is a screen to Sproles, who makes spinning magic for yards after contact

> 3rd and 4 from tempo is Wentz to Matthews for the score, and White had no clue there; excellent work by Pederson, great pass by Wentz, and Green leads by two scores

> Sturgis connects, and it's Green 20, White 10

> Whitehead knee, defense with a chance at making some comfort

> Prescott with all day, settles for TE Jeff Swain, who gets 8; pass rush not getting heat or calls for hands to face

> Toss to Elliott, everyone reads it, S Rodney McLeod dumps him for a loss of seven

> 3rd and 8 and continue the good times is Prescott getting away with grounding, as Bryant stopped the route; tasty

> Fake punt or just blown coverage, massive play for 30 as the gunner just goes to goddamn sleep

> First big play for White STs all night, and just a killer

> Prescott for 4 as the QB misses open guys, then Elliott for a yard

> 3rd and 5 and keep your STs from blowing this so very, very badly is a blitz that doesn't get there, a completion to Williams, and White has all kinds of freaking life

> From the Green 23, Elliott back to life for 16, and you just can't make mistakes like that on the road

> Elliott to the 5, then empty backfield for an underthrown miss to Bryant, the only WR who exists

> Third and maybe force a figgie is clear OPI on what could have been another end zone meltdown INT; good play by Williams to save his QB

> Bailey connects, and it's Green 20, White 13 with 16 minutes left

> Short kick for Huff, who brings it to the White 45 with more excellent blocking

> Wentz to Ertz for 10 off play action with tempo again, then Sproles for little, but White offsides

> White clearly did not prepare for tempo, which is delightful

> End of Q3, then Wentz to Matthews for another first, accuracy over coverage

> From the White 16, Wentz is high to DG-B, not a great place to be, one of his few poor ideas tonight

> Slower tempo now, then tries DG-B, who drops a perfect throw for what should have been another first; sheesh

> 3rd and 10 with long clock, then thrown away on pressure, so put that failed red zone on the WR, honestly

> Sturgis connects from 34, lead back to 10 with 14:09 left

> Whitehead sits, then Elliott for nothing as the defense reads it well; Hicks cleans it up

> From the gun and alone, Prescott tries Williams while out of bounds against heavy pressure; Cox with a stunt

> 3rd and 10 and get off the field please please please is a delay; QB Tony Romo might get his job back yet

> 3rd and 15 and really get off the field is a gimmick play to Beasley, who then throws to Williams, who was wide open... but missed it

> Better lucky than good, defense

> Sproles fair catches at the Green 40 with 13:14 left, and the chance to grind clock and end this without drama

> RB Wendell Smallwood in to give Sproles a break, and he, of course, fumbles, because FFS

> Part of that was Vaitai getting trucked into the back, but still, no excuse, and for an offense with WRs that can't catch, having RBs that can't secure the ball either isn't exactly encouraging

> From the Green 36, Prescott to FB Keith Smith for little against pressure

> From the 35, Elliott for 4 as S Malcolm Jenkins fills

> 3rd and 5 and cover for another mistake is a big damned deal, and it's Prescot trying Bryant, but McKelvin knocking it down

> Bailey tries from 49, and all figgies against my laundry work, even the ones that scrape the paint on the pole going by, so it's a 7 point game again, with 11:34 left

> Huff with no chance, then Wentz nearly throws a pick six to S Orlando Scandrick, who trips while drooling on the jumped route to Matthews

> 2nd and 10 and shake it off is Sproles, who is water through a dam for 13 and a major first down

> Barner for 4 yards, under the theory that he hasn't killed the laundry with a fourth quarter fumble; tempo and gets 3 more

> Third and three and keep control of the game from the Green 45 is an easy cross to Matthews for 11, the QB showing quality

> Play action, then checkdown to Sproles for 3; he gets it again and makes another first down as the line does the job

> From the White 32 in long figgie range, Pederson tries trickery, with a backwards pass to Huff, and a deep ball to Matthews; it doesn't work and makes me itchy

> Run clock and don't turn it over, goddamn it

> Barner for 2 on a hole that Sproles might have gotten more out of

> 3rd and 8 in long figgie range, no mistakes, keep the damn ball please, Wentz throws a bad idea screen into a massive loss to Sproles, and that is just the damn near worst, outside of a turnover

> Terrible play call leads to a punt and White life

> Jones to the 11, rather than trying a 53-yarder for the 10-point lead again, and FFS, Doug

> Had Pederson ran it on first rather than try for killshot trickery, then ran it again rather than try the screen, it's likely a 10-point game with 6 minutes left, rather than 7 and 7

> Prescott to Beasley for 12 on nearly there pressure, then Elliott for a massive 60 yard gain, but it comes back on multiple calls of holding

> McKelvin takes a knee, which isn't great, considering he's been on Bryant all night

> Prescott to Bryant for 15 with 5 minutes left and tempo starting, but a near pick on a force to Bryant

> 3rd and 5 and Kind Of A Huge Deal is Prescott to Beasley to move the sticks, and that's quality work by the slot man

> Prescott to WR Bryce Butler on the out route, and White is looking like a different unit again

> Elliott for 7 on audible to the run, then again for the first

> Four minutes left as we have way too much drama for a game that could be over

> Prescott tries Bryant, no flag as Carroll fights well, pressure just not getting there

> Prescott runs for a first as DE Vinny Curry can't stay upright, and Smith can't contain

> From the Green 22, near pick blown by McKelvin on Jenkins' blitz, and dammit, another kill shot missed

> Prescott to Bryant, jump ball won by the WR over Carroll, and that was just infuriating

> Bailey connects, and 57 minutes for tied, with so many chances to end this having been squandered

> Huff takes a knee, so no ST magic to make this easier

> Sproles for 8 with major violence to end the run; Vaitai with a nice block, Wentz with the audible

> Bad throw and worse completion to Matthews, who loses two yards, and that's the two minute warning

> Everything play is Wentz to Burton, who of course isn't open, and doesn't catch a ball on the screws

> Tells you everything you need to know about the laundry is that the everything play goes to TE3 on a non-gimmick play

> Weak punt by Jones just to make Prescott's christening even easier

> Prescott takes too long and throws it away, misses Bryant

> Blitz doesn't get there, but it does nick the ball, with Bryant open but the ball not getting there

> Pure dice rolls here

> 3rd and 10 to save the game is another blitz, finally gets there, and the QB is lucky that no one was around to pick the duck; no grounding call, of course, because we're in Dallas

> Sproles lets it get into the end zone, and Wentz has 3 timeouts and 73 seconds to manage a game winning drive; as much of a stand as you could hope for from the defense there

> DG-B for a first, but it's OPI of course, on DeSean Jackson, because the refs can't get the numbers right

> 1st and 20 is a sack by Lee, and we're now into the realm of White winning this in regulation on defense

> 2nd and 26 and Just Not A Disaster is Wentz from his end zone to Matthews for 7 and another White timeout

> 3rd and 19 from the 11 with 53 seconds left needs to burn clock and take the last White timeout and not be a disaster; it's Wentz escaping pressure for a second, then taking a massive sack while somehow not fumbling

> White's last timeout with 44 seconds left, and Jones has to hit a massive punt here

> To the White 37 with a flag of course; it's holding and makes it harder on Prescott; STs did all they could there

> 38 seconds left, Green trying to force overtime

> Graham gets to the QB, nearly a fumble, dammit

> 2nd and 10 and a sack by Barwin, and Green doesn't take a timeout for some reason

> White lets it go to overtime and WTF, Doug

> White wins the coin toss, which might be a good thing, the way these offenses played in the last few minutes

> Sturgis with the touchback instead of something more aggro

> From the 25, Elliott for 4, since that can be part of the game again

> 2nd and 6 with tempo is Prescott to Williams, who skies for it and gets the first

> Prescott to Beasley off play action, already in figgie range, pressure doesn't get there, holds not called, lather rinse repeat

> Elliott for 3 as the defense gets blitzy again

> Tempo and empty backfield, audible to Beasley for 6 yards as McLeod doesn't get there fast enough

> 3rd and 1 and killshot time is a power set and dull playcall; Elliott spins but doesn't get to the sticks

> Fourth and 1 with the offense still on, and the QB sneak gets it; ballsy and benefiting from the bullspit spot from before, but that's the benefit of having the best OL in the NFL

> From the Green 26, Elliott for 12 as the defense just can't do this any more

> From the Green 14, Elliott for nothing off pointless read action trickery

> 2nd and 10, game on the line every play, Elliott to the 4 on another absurd spot, first down

> Killshot time with RB Alfred Morris, broken play option and nearly a fumble

> Prescott to Witten off a broken play, and that's the game

> McLeod and Jenkins collided, and everything about this game will just haunt

> Dallas has a 2-game lead in the East, Wentz can sue any number of his teammates and coaches for non-support, and my laundry is becoming a clear home/road outfit

> Time to go drink while I still can, and yeah, I know, road game, rookie QB, rookie HC, rebuilding year, but FFS -- 10 point lead in the fourth with any number of chances to end it is a 10 point lead in the fourth with any number of chances to end it

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