The Birds are coming off a win over the Detroit Lions it was not as convincing as many hoped. While there are a number of positives to take away from this game, concerns remain about Philadelphia’s defense. Can Jonathan Gannon find a way to stand up to a quarterback who isn’t totally terrible? Kirk Cousins has proven troublesome for the Birds in the past and it’s currently difficult to give Philly’s defensive coordinator the benefit of the doubt.
The Vikings are looking to follow up on a big win over the Green Bay Packers with another big effort. Minnesota’s defense limited the damage Aaron Rodgers could do in Week 1. There could be pressure on the Eagles offense to rack up plenty of points if Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook prove to be as tough as they are. they seem so.
The winner of this game will feel pretty good. They will have a 2-0 record and a claim as one of the best teams in the NFC. The loser might think he is good but not good enough.
Bleeding Green Nation will be covering this game with live updates in the form of highlights, analysis and more. Be sure to follow and refresh the page often.
(NOTE: This is NOT a game thread; it is a live blog that will turn into a recap of the game. Use BGN’s designated game threads for each quarter to discuss in-game happenings. The thread of the first quarter is HERE.)
- The Eagles targeted DeVonta Smith on the very first play, which ended in a five-yard reception. Who would have guessed that the Birds would try to touch him sooner? Jalen Hurts rolled right and found an open Dallas Goedert for a first down. Miles Sanders’ first run was 12 yards. Hurts was tackled with no gain to bring in a 3rd and 9. On third down, Hurts found Kenneth Gainwell short for a catch-and-run to move the chains… but the big play was wiped out by Landon Dickerson who was illegally a bit back. On the 3rd and 13th, Hurts stood in the pocket with good protection and fired a strike at AJ Brown for a first down. Nice throw! Hurts found Zach Pascal short to convert a 3rd and 3. Pascal also had a third conversion in Detroit last week; he is a factor in these situations. Two plays later, Hurts powered through contact to hit it for a touchdown. Powerful opening drive. Bizarre sequence on the Eagles extra point where they had to redo the extra point because “waiting Vikings” were on the ground. How was that not a penalty, then? The DID Vikings were then penalized for being offside… but the Eagles refused the flag instead of trying to pick up two runs from the 1-yard line. EAGLES 7, VIKINGS 0.
- The Vikings’ first drive was a three-and-out with Darius Slay knocking down a Kirk Cousins pass intended for Justin Jefferson. Jefferson wanted a pass interference call but the referees didn’t give it to him. Slay quickly grabbed Jefferson’s hand … but the refs aren’t always going to call that. Nick Sirianni was sent off and ran to celebrate with the defense after the stoppage.
- Offensive pass interference on DeVonta turned a 3rd-and-2 into a 3rd-and-12. Hurts was then sacked from behind after holding the ball to force a punt. Jalen Reagor drew boos as he lined up to return the Eagles’ first punt … then drew cheers after being tackled by Zech McPhearson for a single yard gain.
- The Vikings came in 3rd and 5th and James Bradberry knocked down the third pitch to Irv Smith. Good start for the defense of Jonathan Gannon.
- The Eagles were called for their fourth offensive penalty on their third practice. It was their third ineligible man on the pitch with Isaac Seumalo named as the culprit.
- Hurts threw deep to a wide-open Quez Watkins, who was released with a Vikings safety mistakenly assisting Goedert instead of staying with the fast wide receiver. EAGLES 14, VIKINGS 0.
- Jalen Reagor’s throw sweeps 3rd-1 for a 17-yard gain … and the crowd boos at Linc. The Vikings entered the red zone and Haason Reddick, who took cover against backup tight end Johnny Mundt, allowed a 17-yard reception to set up the first and the goal at the 2-yard line. The Cousins then hit Irv Smith with a short pass for the score. Reddick in the cover certainly looks like a waste. EAGLES 14, VIKINGS 7.
- The Eagles came in 3rd and 12th and Hurts went over the marker, but they were helped by a Vikings illegal contact penalty for another set of downs. Hurts’ first incompleteness came on a play where Goedert was tightly covered and nearly caught, but Cameron Dantlzer stunned the ball before the tight end established possession. Just great defensive play to break up a good pitch in a tight window. Hurts’ third pass was completed short of the sticks to force a punt. Second offensive drive of the night without points.
- TJ Edwards knocked down a Cousins third pass down the middle to force another three and out.
- Hurts hit DeVonta down the middle on back-to-back plays for 19 and 16 yards. Then Boston Scott tied for 16 yards. Then Sanders took a draw for nine yards. Facing 3rd and 2nd, Hurts started to run…but not just for the first down. Instead of going out, he followed Goedert’s good blocking of the lead on Harrison Smith, then powered through contact to extend for a touchdown. Pretty awesome stuff! EAGLES 21, VIKINGS 7.
- Josh Sweat fired Cousins…but grabbed his face mask to clear the bag. Womp. Cousins nearly got sacked on a deep throw that appeared to be affected by pressure…but it was nearly finished deep for Irv Smith…who instead dropped what could have been a touchdown. What a break. Especially for CJ Gardner-Johnson. Cousins’ third down pass was incomplete to bring another save. Weird how unintentional it was on the ground when no one was even near the ball. The referees said Dalvin Cook was in the zone but…he wasn’t. At all.
- The Eagles took over on their own 5-yard line with 1:14 left in the second quarter. Hurts kicked the ball with a nice touch to a low spot to find DeVonta for a first down. Hurts hit Goedert for a 19-yard catch-and-run along the left sideline. I don’t know why the Vikings left it so open. Hurts hit another pass to Goedert well in the middle, another top shot. That completion set up a 38-yard field goal from Jake Elliott. Huge to be able to get points on that drive and make it a three possession game. EAGLES 24, VIKINGS 7.
- Quez Watkins was back to kick off.
- AJ Brown was briefly examined in the medical tent midway through the second quarter. He didn’t run out of time, though.