VICTORY! Coach Nick Siranni starts his reign off with a dominant road win in Atlanta. Jalen Hurts had absolute command of the offense the entire game to lead the Eagles to a 32-6 win. The run defense looked suspect in moments, but stepped up when it mattered, holding a what can be lethal offense out of the end-zone for four quarters. A lot of positives to take away and enjoy for the next 24 hours before turning the focus to San Francisco.
1. Jalen Hurts is ready for his moment.
Sure, the Falcons defense is not know to be tough, but Hurts orchestrated the offense to perfection. Zero turnovers and getting the job done with his feet and his arm when appropriate. Taking only one sack and not having one bad throw, you like to see this confidence out of the quarterback to start the season. The challenge gets tougher with the 49ers defense coming to town next weekend, but they also allowed Jared Goff to torch them to the tune of 338 yards. Hurts knows “Rent is due” everyday, and will get his chance to earn his rent next week. Hurts’ will be ready for the opportunity.
(Dale Zanine – USA TODAY Sports)
2. The wide receiver corp is the real deal.
Devonta Smith earning his keep with the first touchdown of the game on a beauty from Hurts. Although this was the highlight of the day for Smith, he finished with seven catches for 71 yards. Jalen Reagor catching all six balls thrown his way, one for a tunnel route, taking it to the crib, putting the stamp on the Eagles win. These two players really stepped up when the pressure was on. Dallas Goedert with the second quarter touchdown, which also include a clutch third down conversion on the same drive. Quez Watkins had a quiet, but productive game for WR3, catching the ball on three straight plays. Much positivity for the young receiver group after seasons of being plagued with crucial drops.
3. The run defense struggled while the pass defense came through.
The definition of bend, don’t break defense, looked a little leaky on the running front, but came through when it mattered. Cordarrelle Patterson sliced through the defense at ease, but were ultimately unable to punch the ball into the end zone. Playing to the advantage of trailing majority of the game, Atlanta had to abandon the run game, but the pass rush completely took over. Javon Hargrave and Hassan Ridgeway coming up with down-the-stretch sacks to seal the deal. Matt Ryan had no time to settle in the pocket, and was stifled to 164 passing yards. We need this same kind of energy to fluster Jimmy Garappolo or Trey Lance, regardless of who is taking snaps to secure a victory next week.
(John David Mercer – USA TODAY Sports)
Feels good to start the season 1-0 and atop the NFC East for now. A challenging match up coming against the San Francisco 49ers will shed a little more light on this young team. The crowd will be juiced for the first full house at the Linc since 2019 behind a team with confidence on high after such a dominant performance.
(Featured image: Kevin Cox – Getty Images)