Eagles Week 3 PFF Grades: DeVonta Smith earns elite marks; defensive line dominates in Washington
Three wins, zero losses. The Eagles continued their hot start this season with another dominant victory on Sunday, defeating Washington and pummeling QB Carson Wentz in the process.
The WR duo of DeVonta Smith and AJ Brown paved the way offensively, combining for 254 yards on 13 receptions. Their signal caller, Jalen Hurts, was dialed in once again, going 22-for-35 (62.9 completion percentage) for 340 yards and three touchdowns while posting a 123.5 passer rating.
On the defensive side of the ball, Brandon Graham and Co. had Wentz on skates all afternoon. They totaled nine sacks on the day and racked up 30 total pressures throughout the contest.
As we do every week, let’s take a look at how Pro Football Focus graded the Eagles performance for Week 3.
DeVonta Smith, Grant Calcaterra, and Lane Johnson lead the way offensively
As expected, second-year wideout DeVonta Smith earned the highest offensive grade on Sunday, finishing the day with a 92.5 overall mark; the second-best single-game PFF grade Smith has earned in his career.
The Slim Reaper averaged 21.1 yards per catch against Washington, totaling 169 yards and one touchdown. While the pair of 30+ yard bombs in the first half accounted for the majority of Smith’s yardage, he did a lot of damage after the catch as well. The No. 2 receiver averaged 8.5 yards after the catch per reception and finished the day with 65 yards in total YAC.
Not to mention, Smith moved the chains six times and posted four explosive plays (plays of 15 yards or more) on the day. Not too shabby for the second-best receiver on the Eagles roster.
Another pass catcher finished the day with elite marks and it probably isn’t who you’d expect. Rookie tight end Grant Calcaterra earned a 91.7 offensive grade on 17 snaps.
The rookie was only targeted once during the contest, but he made the most out of it, hauling it in and scampering for 40 yards. It’ll be interesting to see if Calcaterra’s role increases as a receiving threat moving forward.
Pro Bowl right tackle Lane Johnson earned the third-highest grade on the Eagles offense, posting a 91.2 offensive grade, along with 91.7 and 85.6 grades in pass blocking and run blocking respectively. Johnson didn’t surrender a single sack, pressure, or hurry on the afternoon.
Jalen Hurts posts average PFF grades despite his great performance
One of the biggest NFL storylines right now is the growth of Eagles QB Jalen Hurts. He’s looked like a completely different signal caller thus far and his PFF grades through two games reflected that.
On Sunday, Hurts posted his worst PFF grade this season, earning a 63.7 offensive grade for his efforts. His 70.9 pass grade is still solid, but again, it’s the worst passing grade he’s earned this season.
Nevertheless, Hurts still completed over 60 percent of his throws and moved the chains 16 times with his arm. On top of that, QB1 posted three big time throws (a pass with excellent ball location and timing, generally thrown further down the field and/or into a tighter window) on the day, which is the most he’s posted in a single game this season and tied for the most he’s thrown in a game during his career.
Hurts’ overall mark may have been hindered by his lackluster 42.1 running grade. He totaled just 20 yards on the ground against Washington, averaging 2.2 yards per carry.
While that rushing grade is low for Hurts, it speaks to the maturation process of the quarterback. He no longer has to rely on his legs to move the ball. His scrambling ability is still an integral part of his skillset, but now it’s utilized to create room behind the line of scrimmage and find an open receiver down field.
When a quarterback can beat you with his arm just as effectively as he can dice you up with his legs, it’s nearly impossible to stop from a defensive perspective.
PFF grades for the entire Eagles offense:
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Brandon Graham, Jordan Davis, and TJ Edwards lead the way defensively
Brandon “Strip Sack” Graham turned the clocks back on Sunday, putting together a vintage performance against his former QB Carson Wentz. He led the defense with 2.5 sacks and five total pressures, en route to earning a 90.5 defensive grade, the best single-game grade he’s posted since Week 12 of the 2020 season.
BG wasn’t the only defensive lineman creating havoc either. Rookie first-round pick Jordan Davis came through in a big way on Sunday, posting the best defensive grade (90.2) of his early career.
He played a season-high 24 defensive snaps against Washington, racking up four total pressures and a pass deflection on the day.
Behind him, TJ Edwards continued his stellar 2022 campaign on Sunday. He’s been the unsung hero of the Eagles defense thus far and he was a heat seeking missile against Washington, recording a team-high 10 combined tackles, two tackles for loss, two quarterback hits, and one sack.
Edwards is slowly becoming one of the most overlooked linebackers in the NFL. He earned a 88.1 defensive grade for his efforts on Sunday and currently has the second-highest defensive grade of any LB in football, behind only Matt Milano of Buffalo.
Eagles’ DL controlled the line of scrimmage all game long
The Eagles defensive line absolutely manhandled Washington’s front all game long.
Five Eagles defenders posted pass rushing grades 70.0 or higher.
|Player||PFF pass rushing grade|
What’s even more impressive is just how often some of the Eagles pass rushers won against the opposing blockers. Per PFF, Davis and Graham rushed the passer on a combined 33 snaps and posted winning percentages of 38.5 percent and 38.9 percent respectively.
Haason Reddick, Javon Hargrave, Fletcher Cox, Tarron Jackson, and Patrick Johnson posting winning percentage of 13.0 percent or higher on the afternoon. In total, Jonathan Gannon’s defense recorded nine sacks, 30 pressures, six QB hits, and 11 hurries against the Commanders. Not to mention they forced two fumbles from Wentz, something the former Eagles QB has been known for during his career.
Wentz had 17 passing attempts in the first half and they resulted in three completions, seven incompletions, six sacks, one fumble, and -16 net passing yards. Complete domination, in every sense of the word.
Week 3 was the coming out party for this Eagles defensive front. The defense as a whole has allowed just 15 points in total over the past two weeks. It’s the first time an Eagles defense has given up single digits in consecutive games since the Super Bowl season.
As long as this defensive front continues to wreak havoc on opposing offenses, the defensive domination in Philly will continue.
PFF grades for the entire Eagles defense:
Mandatory Credit: The Associated Press