Philadelphia Eagles: Takeaways From Preseason Week 2

Aug 18, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Aaron Grymes (38) intercepts a pass in front of Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Sammie Coates (14) during the first half of their game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 18, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Aaron Grymes (38) intercepts a pass in front of Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Sammie Coates (14) during the first half of their game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports /

The Philadelphia Eagles got their second win of the preseason with a dominating performance over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Philadelphia Eagles were off to a quick start in Thursday night’s matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, as Nolan Carroll kicked off the scoring with a pick-6. The momentum of the game shifted towards the Philadelphia Eagles and they held on to it, winning the game 17-0.

The Sam Bradford-led offense was stagnant, struggling to make any kind of impact in the game. Most of it was due to the shaky performance from the offensive line and all to common drops from the wide receiving core. The game fell flat, as it stayed 7-0 right up until the end of the first half where Bradford led the offense towards a Cody Parkey field goal.

The game started to heat up in the second half, and the Philadelphia Eagles never looked back. Chase Daniel and the second unit took over the game, moving the ball more fluidly both in the pass and run game. The defense continued to dominate and the Philadelphia Eagles wrapped up an easy second preseason victory. 

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First, let’s take a look at the winners and losers for the Philadelphia Eagles in their second game, and then we’ll move towards game notes.


The Defense

The Philadelphia Eagles defense racked up 4 INTs, all against second-string quarterback Landry Jones, who started the game. Nolan Carroll’s pick-6 set the tone quick and Jones was rattled the entire game. Malcolm Jenkins then picked off the ball in the red zone after a great play on the ball by the Philadelphia Eagles’ new addition Leodis McKelvin. Jaylen Watkins polished off the takeaways with the final INT but it was Aaron Grymes who took the cake for best interception of the night.

It wasn’t just the passing game that the Philadelphia Eagles ate up. The Pittsburgh Steelers racked up just 50 yards on the ground game, making life easy in the later downs on the series. The Philadelphia Eagles secondary did look shaky at times, but were bailed out by Steelers mistake. Nonetheless, the game ball should go to the defense for their impactful game-changing moments and completing the 17-0 shutout.

Sam Bradford and Chase Daniel

Sam Bradford didn’t have an absolutely spectacular game, but did complete the short passes to keep drives alive. Bradford went 14 for 19 on 115 yards. Bradford didn’t throw down the field much, but that’s saying more about the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiving core than anything.

Chase Daniel came in to start the second half and orchestrated the team’s first touchdown drive of the game. Daniel went 10 for 16 on 82 yards. He had a few mis-throws, but considering the rough outing he was apart of last week this was a huge positive.

Kenjon Barner

Kenjon Barner has been hiding beneath the depth chart of the Philadelphia Eagles for some time now, but they may start to change. Barner had 41 yards on 6 attempts and scored the team’s only offensive touchdown of the game on a bruising 9-yard run.

Barner may finally get his chance at more of a regular back this season, but he will have to outwork Ryan Mathews, Darren Sproles, and rookie Wendell Smallwood.

Paul Turner

The Philadelphia Eagles have found a preseason star in Paul Turner. Turner has had criticisms involving his size and speed, but he seems to continue to make plays. Turner had 3 receptions and 44 yards, including the play of the night.

Turner is in serious consideration in making the final Philadelphia Eagles roster, but will have to continue to impress.


Caleb Sturgis

Poor Caleb Sturgis. Just when it looks like he’s ahead of Cody Parkey in the kicking battle, he is forced to miss a game due to a hilariously freak injury. Prior to the game, Sturgis was hit in the head with a Donnie Jones punt. Parkey went on to sink a 40-yard field goal, and Sturgis’ lead is now in question.

Keep your helmet on around Donnie Jones.

Josh Huff

Josh Huff’s inconsistency is continuing. Huff had just one catch on 5 yards and dropped a few easy passes. Huff’s future is in question with the rise of Paul Turner, so he will need some sort of spark to remain relevant.

Game Notes

  • The Philadelphia Eagles will be evaluating rookie DB Blake Countess for a head injury.
  • 7th-round pick and linebacker Joe Walker missed the game with a knee injury.
  • Brandon Graham racked up 2 tackles while fighting off an illness.
  • The Philadelphia Eagles sole turnover came near the last two minutes of the game by rookie receiver Cayleb Jones
  • New addition Dorial Green-Beckham played tonight despite prior reports. Was targeted once in the red zone with an errant pass by Chase Daniel.

Next: Green-Beckham Risk vs. Reward

The Philadelphia Eagles will play their third preseason game on Saturday, August 27th against the Indianapolis Colts at 7:00pm. The play of the first team offense will be under an even bigger microscope next week, and it’ll be important for the Philadelphia Eagles to find some kind of flow.