NFL

Eagles drop home opener, 37-19, to Rams

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz (11) in action during the second quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at Lincoln Financial Field. (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports)

By Jovan Alford

Heading into Sunday’s home opener against the Los Angeles Rams, the Philadelphia Eagles were looking to fix the issues that plagued them in last week’s 10-point loss to the Washington Football Team.

However, those same issues that plagued the Eagles in Week 1 reared its ugly head on Sunday as they lost 37-19 to the Rams. With the loss, the Eagles are now 0-2 for the first time in head coach Doug Pederson’s coaching tenure.

Unlike last week’s second-half debacle, Los Angeles jumped out to a dominating 14-3 first-quarter lead over Philadelphia. Eagles starting quarterback Carson Wentz struggled on Sunday and was one of the reasons why the team could not capture their first victory.

The second overall pick from the 2016 NFL draft completed 60.4-percent of his passes (43 attempts) for 242 yards and two interceptions. He also had a rushing touchdown on Sunday.

However, Goff started the game on fire, completing his first 13 passes thanks to the play action and bootlegs. The former overall pick did not throw his first completion until late in the second quarter.

Overall, Goff completed 74-percent of his passes (27 attempts) for 267 yards and three touchdowns. Veteran tight end Tyler Higbee was the recipient of Goff’s touchdown passes.

As previously mentioned, the Rams got off to a hot start, but they can thank the Eagles for the help. On their first offensive drive, Philadelphia made it a point to get second-year running back Miles Sanders the ball.

Sanders missed the last week’s game with a hamstring injury. However, on the third play of the game, he fumbled the ball away, which was recovered by the Rams linebacker Micah Kiser.

After the Sanders’ turnover, the Rams dialed up back-to-back running plays for rookie running back Cam Akers, who gained eight yards.

Then on third down and short, Goff found veteran wide receiver Cooper Kupp for a 24-yard reception to put the Rams inside the red zone. Goff ended the drive, finding Higbee for a four-yard touchdown, giving the Rams a 7-0 lead.

At that point in the game, the Eagles’ defense allowed 34 unanswered points since Week 1. However, with 11:09 left in the opening frame, Philadelphia engineered their own scoring drive.

On this drive, Wentz targeted tight end Zach Ertz and wide receiver Jalen Reagor for 12 and 14-yard receptions.

Then at the 8:41 mark, running back Boston Scott made his first appearance, ripping off a nine-yard run. The Eagles capped off their drive with a 38-yard field goal from Jake Elliott, cutting the Rams’ deficit to 7-3.

With 6:42 left in the first quarter, the Rams’ offense put together another scoring drive. This drive ended with wide receiver Robert Woods scoring a five-yard touchdown run on a reserve, making the score 14-3.

After the Woods’ touchdown, the Rams added another touchdown to begin the second quarter. Goff found Higbee again, this time for a three-yard touchdown reception.

At this point, Goff was a perfect 12/12 throwing the ball, and the Rams held a 21-3 lead.

However, the Eagles did not give up. Instead, they came back with an 11-play scoring drive, which ended with a Wentz one-yard touchdown run.

 To end the first half, the Eagles added a rushing touchdown from Sanders, making the score 21-16 at halftime. The former Penn State standout had 95 yards rushing yards and 36 receiving yards on Sunday.

 With momentum on their side heading into the third quarter, The Eagles’ put together an impressive 12-play drive. However, it came to a screeching halt as Wentz was intercepted by Rams cornerback David Williams.

 After the Wentz turnover, Goff led the Rams on another scoring that ended with kicker Sam Sloman making a 30-yard field goal.

 Finally, in the fourth quarter, the Eagles drove down the field as Wentz got wide receiver DeSean Jackson involved in the passing game. However, the drive ended with another made Elliott field goal.

 Later in the quarter, the Rams tacked on another Higbee receiving touchdown and rushing touchdown from second-year running back Darrell Henderson.

The Eagles (0-2) will now get ready to play the Bengals (0-2) next Sunday afternoon at the Linc (1:00 p.m. ET, CBS).

 

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