Eagles Week 2 PFF Grades: Jalen Hurts shines under the Monday night lights; Darius Slay leads the way defensively
The Eagles put on a clinic Monday night, dominating Minnesota from start to finish in front of the Lincoln Financial Field crowd.
Jalen Hurts and Co. nearly doubled the Vikings’ yardage, racking up 486 total yards while averaging 7.1 yards per play. Sitting at 2-0 and tied atop the NFC East standings, national pundits are beginning to take notice. Including Pro Football Focus, who had nothing but glowing reviews for the Eagles after their Monday night showcase.
Here’s how Philly fared in PFF’s grading system following their Week 2 victory.
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Jalen Hurts, Jason Kelce, and Quez Watkins lead the way offensively
QB1 is the talk of the town following his masterclass under the Monday night lights.
Jalen Hurts completed nearly 84 percent of his throws on 31 attempts while racking up 333 yards through the air. He totaled three touchdowns on the night, one with his arm and two with his legs. The Eagles signal caller became the first quarterback in NFL history to throw for 300+ yards, complete over 80 percent of his passes, and score two rushing touchdowns.
Not only was this Hurts’ best showing as an Eagle, it’s one of the best games any quarterback has ever had in this city.
Hurts was the highest graded player on the Eagles offense Monday night, per PFF. He finished the night with an offensive grade of 83.4 along with a passing grade of 90.7. Though he put up two rushing touchdowns and 57 yards on the ground, PFF handed Hurts a measly 48.8 rushing grade.
Jason Kelce was once again the highest graded lineman for the Eagles, earning a 78.9 overall grade on the evening. He helped pave the way for another dominant rushing performance by Philly’s offense, finishing the night with a 84.7 run blocking grade.
All of the Eagles pass catchers posted stellar marks as well. AJ Brown, DeVonta Smith, and Quez Watkins all posted offensive grades north of 73.0. Watkins managed to have the highest offensive grade of the three with a 78.4 mark, followed by Brown at 76.4 and Smith at 73.1.
The Eagles offensive line posts underwhelming grades for the second week in a row
Aside from Kelce, none of the Eagles starting offensive lineman posted an overall grade higher than 70.0. It’s the second week in a row the big guys up front posted underwhelming marks in PFF’s grading system.
Here’s how each starter graded out:
- Jordan Mailata: 52.7
- Landon Dickerson: 59.1
- Jason Kelce: 78.9
- Isaac Seumalo: 67.7
- Lane Johnson: 62.6
Based on how efficiently the Eagles moved the ball against Minnesota, it’s hard to find much to complain about with the offensive line, despite their low marks in PFF’s grading system. Philly accumulated 168 rushing yards while averaging 4.8 yards per carry, but they did surrender three sacks on the night and committed a total of seven penalties.
Cleaning up those errors and shoring up their pass protection will be key moving forward. But like I said last week, it’s not time to panic over this unit. They’re still one of the best offensive lines in the NFL.
PFF grades for the entire Eagles offense:
Darius Slay, TJ Edwards, and Avonte Maddox lead the way defensively
From top to bottom, Jonathan Gannon’s defense looked like a completely different unit on Monday night compared to what they put forth in Week 1.
Darius Slay was in charge of containing arguably the best WR in football in Justin Jefferson and he did so masterfully. Kirk Cousins targeted Jefferson six times with Slay assigned to him and managed to complete just one of his attempts for seven yards. Both of Slay’s interceptions on the night came when he was covering Jefferson as well.
Big Play Slay ended his night with a defensive grade of 86.6 and a coverage grade of 87.8.
Slay’s fellow cornerback, Avonte Maddox, also had a great game, earning a 81.8 defensive grade along with a coverage grade of 85.7. The nickel corner was targeted six times by Cousins, allowing five completions for 44 yards while snagging his first interception of the season.
TJ Edwards led the way for Philly’s linebacking corps, racking up 10 combined tackles and one tackle for a loss Monday night. He finished the game with an overall grade of 84.6 along with the highest pass rushing grade (90.0) of any Eagles defender during the contest.
Philly’s pass rush was much better than it was last week, with three separate defensive lineman posting pass rushing grades of at least 70.0 — Fletcher Cox, Josh Sweat, and Haason Reddick. In totality, the Eagles accumulated 23 pressures, 16 hurries, five quarterback hits, and two sacks.
Chauncey Gardner-Johnson continues to underperform in PFF’s grading system
Watching the tape, S Chauncey Gardner-Johnson doesn’t appear to be a complete liability for the Eagles defense, but PFF has been brutal with their assessment of his play so far this season.
After posting a 45.5 defensive grade on opening weekend, he followed it up with a 44.2 defensive mark this week. As it stands, CGJ’s defensive grade sits at 41.0 through two games, the fifth-worst mark of any safety in the league.
On Monday night, CGJ recorded four tackles and surrendered two receptions on three targets, including the lone touchdown of the night for Minnesota.
If he continues to post lackluster numbers in coverage, offenses are going to start targeting CGJ more often. The Eagles secondary doesn’t appear to have many weak links through two games, with the exception of Gardner-Johnson.
Good quarterbacks are going to look to exploit CGJ moving forward, or at least until he gives them a reason not to.
PFF grades for the entire Eagles defense:
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