compiled by Andrew Potter
Each Sunday, the FO staff sends around e-mails about the games that each of us are watching. We share information about the games that the rest of the group might not be watching, ask questions, and keep everyone else informed about which games they might want to turn into (if they can).
On Monday, we compile a digest of those e-mails and produce this feature. By its nature, it can be disjointed and dissimilar to the other articles on the site.
While these e-mails are generally written with Audibles in mind, they do not represent a standard review of all the games each week. That means we aren't going to cover every game, or every important play. We watch the games that we, as fans, are interested in watching, so your favorite team's game might not be covered to your fullest desires or even at all. (If you are a Steelers or Patriots fan, you are probably in luck; if you are a Bills fan, not so much.) We have no intention of adding new authors to cover every game on a given Sunday, nor will we watch a different game from the ones that we're personally interested in watching, just to ensure that Audibles covers every game.
Buffalo Bills 31 "at" Jacksonville Jaguars (London) 34
Andrew Potter: I still don't understand Rex Ryan's fascination with random wildcat plays following successful passes. (I say Ryan's rather than the coordinator's as we have seen this throughout his Jets tenure, and now also in Buffalo.) EJ Manuel hits a 29-yard pass to Chris Gragg, bringing the Bills down to Jacksonville's 12-yard line. On the next play, Manuel lines up wide with LeSean McCoy in the shotgun. Robert Woods motions from left to right, but the ball is snapped while Woods is between the center and McCoy, bounces off Woods, and the fumble is fortunately recovered by McCoy for a loss of 1 yard. Two incomplete passes later, Dan Carpenter kicks a 31-yard field goal. The drive had been working until the wildcat tomfoolery (6-yard run, 10-yard pass, 29-yard pass) but failed completely after that. How often do those plays actually work out for Ryan's teams?
Cian Fahey: Maybe he doesn't believe in momentum.
Aaron Schatz: Not to fault Jacksonville too much up 27-13, but they just had first-and-goal from the 1-yard line and ran Toby Gerhart up the middle out of the same power running formation four times. Does Blake Bortles not know how to run a quarterback sneak?
(I'm sure he does. That's sarcasm. What the hell, Greg Not The Tight End Olsen?)
Scott Kacsmar: Bortles was 6-of-8 on quarterback sneaks as a rookie. I actually would have just kicked a field goal there to go up 17. That was a 9:30 drive.
I imagine it was wise to toss and turn in bed for a few more hours instead of getting up to watch EJ Manuel piss away this game, right? I was surprised when Aaron said the Jaguars had 27 points, but that's obviously thanks to two return touchdowns and another short field (36 yards) after another Manuel interception.
Aaron Schatz: In the end, Jacksonville snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, and then gave it back.
Atlanta Falcons 10 at Tennessee Titans 7
Cian Fahey: Marcus Mariota and Zach Mettenberger couldn't be any more different as quarterbacks. Mettenberger's lack of accuracy and laborious process in the pocket really hinders the whole offense, whereas Mariota elevates his teammates with his efficiency in action. The Titans are unfortunate because they've got a bad Matt Ryan display today, but they can't take the commanding lead that the Falcons are trying to give to them.
Tom Gower: I thought the Falcons would have their way with the Titans' defense, but no such luck to date with the Titans holding a 7-3 halftime lead. Devonta Freeman has looked really good at times, but he has been a bit boom-and-bust, and Matt Ryan has missed a number of throws, including an open Julio Jones in the end zone. The Falcons have also gone pass-heavy in short yardage, passing on third-and-2 twice and fourth-and-2, plus twice more on third-and-3. Ryan is 1-of-5 on those plays.
Zach Mettenberger had a good throw to Kendall Wright for a score after a Ryan screen pass was tipped and intercepted. He had a good drive in the two-minute, at least until Adrian Clayborn got his hand up in his face mask (not flagged) and he threw an interception. On the whole, though, he's been high, pretty high, and higher on his downfield throws, while Cian noted the laboriousness of his process in the pocket, to which I'd likely add laboriousness in his thinking and processing. I'll need all-22 to confirm that last, though, but it would be consistent with what we've seen of him in the past.
Cian Fahey: zzzzZZZzzz....zzzzZZZzzzz....wuh..huh..oh, sorry, just been watching the Titans-Falcons game.
Tom Gower: In nine plays on third or fourth and short (3 yards or less to go), the Atlanta Falcons threw seven passes, handed the ball off to fullback Patrick DiMarco once, and gave Devonta Freeman (currently 24-115) one carry. They converted only two of those, one pass and the handoff to Freeman.
Today's game should finish any talk in Tennessee about Zach Mettenberger, potential quality NFL starter, and should quiet down any of the trade talk nonsense that was still coming out there. I mean, he's probably worth more than Ryan Mallett is right now, but this game was absolutely there for the taking and he did squat on the overwhelming majority of his attempts. His ALEX total should be great, too, given all the checkdowns in third-and-long.
Cian Fahey: The Falcons keep on winning, but this was one of the least impressive displays of their season. If the Titans had Mariota, they would likely have won. The most concerning aspect of the game from the Titans' perspective is Matt Ryan's inaccuracy. He was unable to get into a rhythm or come close to getting the most out of his matchup advantages outside.
Scott Kacsmar: Since there are only two bland games going on, I was reading my Mettenberger article from April.
I recall Tom bringing up Mettenberger's ALEX earlier today. Mettenberger had the second lowest ALEX on third down (minus-1.5) in 2014 behind only Alex Smith (minus-2.3). Mariota was sitting at 28th after Week 6, and I have seen some evidence that Ken Whisenhunt may be protecting quarterbacks that haven't earned his trust yet. But you're not going to sustain success with that strategy and Mettenberger has been terrible on third down in his career. That was also a very poor game-ending interception today in what became a very winnable game against an Atlanta team that's having some issues on offense.
New Orleans Saints 27 at Indianapolis Colts 20
Scott Kacsmar: You pretty much have to get up with the ball and hand it to a ref to get credit for a catch these days. Sean Payton has already challenged two of these "complete the process going to the ground" plays in the first quarter and he's going to lose them both.
Andrew Healy: Unbelievable that a preseason contender is getting annihilated at home by a below-average team. It's 27-0 in the third quarter. Hard to think of many touted units that have underachieved more than the Colts offense.
Aaron Schatz: I feel like we need to put this in the Indianapolis-New Orleans section of Audibles. This is one of the most brutal takedowns of the local team I've ever read by a local columnist.
Tom Gower: I object, because Ken Whisenhunt said he was "proud as hell" of today's Titans performance.
Vince Verhei: Well, as long as we're on this tangent, here's Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune suggesting that the city of San Diego would be a better place if the Chargers left.
Aaron Schatz: Acee is totally right, by the way. The number of Raiders fans in the stands in San Diego was really noticeable on the broadcast. They were loud. I kept thinking to myself, "this does not feel like home-field advantage for the Chargers today."
Minnesota Vikings 28 at Detroit Lions 19
Vince Verhei: Lions got touchdowns on their first two drives thanks in large part to a pair of big plays, a 46-yard deep-ball catch by Calvin Johnson on the first, and a 55-yard blown-coverage gain by Eric Ebron on the second. Since then, they've gone punt, 8-yard field goal drive, punt, and their best play was a 26-yard DPI on Xavier Rhodes against Johnson that looked to me like either guy could have been flagged. Matthew Stafford is under pressure a lot, but he's also missing guys on what should be easy throws.
On defense, the Lions are just crushing the Vikings' line. It's like Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh never left. Adrian Peterson has one carry for 12 yards, and 2 yards on his other eight runs. (It was October of last year that when Peterson admitted, during a court-ordered drug test, that he had been smoking "a little weed." He was due to do something stupid again, and I think getting sick because he swallowed tobacco juice on an airplane qualifies.*) Jerick McKinnon has done a little better, six carries for 23 yards, but even there his longest gain was a 9-yarder where they faked a dive and then pitched it outside, so he went around the Lions' line, not through them.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Peterson denied this after the game.)
Aside from two fumbles, Teddy Bridgewater is having an efficient day. His biggest play was a 49-yard gain on a screen pass to Zach Line -- that's only Line's fifth touch of the year, so you can forgive the Lions for being caught off-guard there.
Lions' secondary giving up big plays. First Stefon Diggs gets free in the end zone. It looked like Bridgewater overthrew him, but Diggs made a ridiculous diving catch for the score. He was wide-open on the play, and I'm not sure how -- it was either really bad man coverage by Rashean Mathis, or Glover Quin was really late getting over in deep zone coverage. Or both.
Next drive, Peterson hits the second level, where James Ihedigbo has a chance to bottle him up. Then Peterson cuts towards the sidelines and Ihedigbo basically stands still. It results in a 75-yard run. Vikings move backwards from there and it turns into a field goal, but Minnesota still leads 25-17.
The story of this game continues to be the Lions' secondary wasting a stellar performance by the front seven. They've sacked Bridgewater four times and have stuffed Peterson for no gain or a loss about a half-dozen times, but they keep giving up plays to receivers. MyCole Pruitt breaks a bunch of tackles to pick up a first down on third-and-long, then play-action gets Adam Thielen open on a deep corner route for a 30-yard gain. And then they go backwards again and kick another field goal to go up 28-17.
Lions have done close to nothing on offense after halftime. Vikings are bringing blitzes and repeatedly sacking Stafford with unblocked rushers.
Lions lose 28-19. Including penalties, they gained 75 and 80 yards on their two first-quarter touchdown drives, and 88 yards on a fourth-quarter drive that ended in a failed fourth-down try. In between, they gained 30 total yards on seven drives, with Stafford taking all seven of his sacks on those possessions.
Scott Kacsmar: We roasted Jim Caldwell for extremely conservative decisions in the fourth quarter last week against Chicago, but I think he went too far in the other direction today. Down 28-17 at the 1-yard line with 2:00 left, I think you kick the field goal on fourth down. Keep it a one-score game. You were just stopped on consecutive runs. Keep the game going, because a failure to convert all but ends it there. Even the safety isn't very helpful when you still need to produce two more scoring drives.
What's really annoying is that Detroit was fine with the risky call there, but ran the ball on third-and-13 earlier in the quarter when the score was still 28-17. That's a bad mixture of conservative and aggressive.
Andrew Healy: Given that I roasted Caldwell for kicking the field goal against the Bears, I want to defend this call. There are a few good reasons to go for it there. First, that's likely to be your best chance to get a touchdown. Second, if you miss the two-point conversion, you now know that you still need a touchdown if you get the chance again.
I'd love it if we started to think of eight points as a one-and-a-half-score game. Getting the two-point conversion often doesn't get enough weight, as in that very-poor-man's Belichick imitation attempt that Jim Mora Jr. tried for UCLA a few weeks ago.
Vince Verhei: I'm with Andrew on this one. You're going to need a touchdown at some point, and you're more likely to get it from the 1-yard line than from who-knows-where on your next drive.
Pittsburgh Steelers 13 at Kansas City Chiefs 23
Scott Kacsmar: The Steelers are using DeAngelo Williams as a short-yardage back today and it has not worked well with two big stops, including a fourth-and-1. Williams was also the target on a third-down pass in the red zone that he dropped, bringing out the field goal unit.
Cleveland Browns 6 at St. Louis Rams 24
Vince Verhei: Every time I watch the Rams play, I have to look up the records and remind myself that yes, this team really did beat Seattle and Arizona.
Todd Gurley gets a 16-yard touchdown run to put the Rams up 24-6 with about eight minutes left in the game and it's pretty much over. Gurley also had a 48-yard run in the third quarter and the Rams have certainly had better stats in the second half. Still, Cleveland has the edge in total yards, 292 to 289, and has nearly matched St. Louis in first downs, 13 to 16. The game is a blowout because the Rams have recovered all three of Cleveland's fumbles, returning one for a touchdown. Play-in and play-out, Cleveland looked as good or better than the Rams for most of the day.
You're not supposed to cheer for injuries, but the CBS execs were clearly hoping that Josh McCown would get hurt. He had a number of bumps and knockdowns today, including one where he scrambled out of bounds and crashed right into a wall. Every time, the camera would frantically cut to Johnny Manziel... who would be standing there minding his own business, showing no indication that he was about to enter the game. Eventually McCown did leave with what looked like an arm or shoulder injury, and Manziel looked OKish on a meaningless drive down three scores in the game's final minutes.
Houston Texans 26 at Miami Dolphins 44
Cian Fahey: Joe Philbin would probably still be employed if his team simply used Lamar Miller. Dan Campbell has come in and made simple alterations that have had a huge impact on overall effectiveness.
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Rivers McCown: I just put on a DVR of the NLCS.
Andrew Healy: So we can say that the Dolphins were just not trying under Philbin, right?
Rivers McCown: Bill O'Brien managed to potentially end the career of his perpetually-injured 29-year-old running back trying to come back from 41-0.
Aaron Schatz: In O'Brien's defense, it was a non-contact injury. Same thing could have happened in practice during the week.
New York Jets 23 at New England Patriots 30
Aaron Schatz: What I was most interested to watch in this game was whether Todd Bowles would resist his urge to blitz given that a) Tom Brady excels against the blitz and b) the Patriots' line is down to its third-string left tackle. After the first series, the answer is yes. Three-and-out, with a four-man line getting pressure on its own on first down (a throwaway) and third down (a sack).
Cian Fahey: The Jets have every single matchup they need to beat the Patriots today, but their quarterback is a major issue. That was highlighted on their first drive when Ryan Fitzpatrick had a bad fumble deep in his own territory.
Aaron Schatz: Also highlighted on the second drive when, after he got them downfield, he way overthrew an open Eric Decker in the right corner of the end zone.
Patriots seem to be using the same coverage style on the Jets that they used on the Colts last year. No. 1 cornerback (Darrelle Revis last year, Malcolm Butler this year, and no, they don't deserve to be in the same sentence but bear with me) is on No. 2 receiver (Decker, in this case). The other starting cornerback (Logan Ryan today) is covering the No. 1 receiver (Brandon Marshall) with Devin McCourty at safety clearly shaded over to Marshall's side.
Patriots have essentially decided they will not let the Jets run the ball on them. Stuffing linebackers up the middle on every play, doing a good job of shutting down Chris Ivory and Zac Stacy. But Chan Gailey has other tricks up his sleeve for the Jets offense, and they're moving the ball down the field on pass plays, with Eric Decker getting open a lot against Malcolm Butler, and passes to guys like Tommy Bohanon and Jeremy Kerley who we have not seen much this year. Ryan Fitzpatrick has also scrambled well and gotten lucky with a couple of dropped interceptions by the Patriots' defense.
On the other hand, the Jets defense has decided it will not let the Patriots gain YAC on those crossing patterns over the middle, and the Patriots haven't been able to find anything else to do. Pats have not had a single running play in the first 20 minutes of the game, and the only throw to Brandon LaFell on the outside was a short hitch. They need to try something else besides the inside crossing stuff.
Patriots go empty backfield on third-and-1 and the Jets send six, with Calvin Pace unblocked for an easy sack. The Patriots have abandoned all pretense of running the ball today, and I don't quite understand it. Yes, the Jets have a great front, but if you put a back in the backfield you not only could try a draw or something, but you also have a guy who can block blitzers, and it's not like he's not allowed to go out on pass routes if the Jets only rush four.
Sterling Xie: The one area where the Patriots had a huge advantage over the Jets in this game was on special teams (No. 3 vs. No. 31 in special teams DVOA). I think it's fair to say that represents the three-point difference at halftime. Steve Weatherford has been pretty bad in his Jets debut, as the Pats have started on their own 41-yard line, midfield, and the Jets 47-yard line following Weatherford's 3 punts so far. As the Cowboys and Colts did, the Jets are going out of their way to take away those in-breaking routes, and it's not helping things when Brandon LaFell drops four first-half passes in his 2015 debut. But if the Pats defense continues to stuff the Jets running game, I like their chances to win the field position battle in the second half as well. Might make the difference in this game, given how yards have been really hard to come by for the Pats' offense.
Aaron Schatz: Eric Decker is having a great game for the Jets, and is huge on a drive where they take a 17-16 lead with 4:00 left in the third quarter. The Patriots know he's causing problems and they specifically had a linebacker disrupt the start of his route as a slot receiver on third-and-7, but he gets into it anyway, angles into the middle of the field, and catches the ball for a 23-yard gain and first down. That's five catches for 82 yards for Decker so far. Two plays later, he was the pick in the pick play on the right side, taking out Rob Ninkovich as Ninkovich attempted to cover Chris Ivory, and Ivory walks right into the end zone untouched for the go-ahead touchdown.
Andrew Healy: The Jets have converted a bunch of third-and-longs today, again and again to Eric Decker. Chris Ivory looking less than 100 percent has been a pretty big problem. Are all the Patriots balls blown up to 16 psi again with drop after drop? I kid, I kid. it's largely LaFell coming back off PUP and not being fresh.
All five Decker receptions are on third down. He's converted two third-and-10s and one third-and-7.
LaFell could be looking for the NFL record in drops. His fifth third-down drop forces a Patriots punt down 17-16 late in the third quarter. In fairness, one of those balls was hard to catch since Antonio Cromartie deflected it. But the other four were legit, I think.
Fitzpatrick has been really good on third down throws today. A bullet back-shoulder to Brandon Marshall should have been a touchdown to go up seven or eight. Instead, Marshall drops it and the Jets settle for three.
Don't want to beat up on a guy too much, but Dion Bailey might again be the weak link in a really good defense. The Patriots convert a third-and-17 when Bailey gives Julian Edelman too much space on what ends up a pretty easy throw. Bailey is in because of an injury to Calvin Pryor, who had looked good in coverage earlier.
The drive ends in a touchdown to Danny Amendola, who is becoming a bigger part of the offense in the last few weeks. Great job holding on to that one as he got undercut after elevating to reel it in.
On a day when the Patriots can't stop dropping the ball, Danny Amendola is going the other way. What a sensational catch now, where he climbs the ladder to give the Patriots a first down inside Jets territory with about 3:20 left.
Sterling Xie: Really, really strange clock management by Todd Bowles at the end of the fourth quarter. The Pats completed a pass following the two-minute warning inbounds, but Bowles let it run down to 1:20 despite having three timeouts. Brady made it a moot point on the next play by connecting with Gronk to put the Pats up 10 and put the game away. But how on earth did the Jets come out of that drive with all of their timeouts? It was curious enough that he wasn't using any timeouts before the two-minute warning, but even if the Jets had come up with a stop, the offense probably wouldn't have had enough time to score the go-ahead touchdown. Can't understand that.
Aaron Schatz: Just in case the Jets' clock management in the Patriots' final drive wasn't strange enough, they also recovered an onside kick after their field goal to backdoor-cover and make it 30-23, and instead of a Hail Mary, they threw a 10-yard pass to Eric Decker in the middle of the field. Brandon Marshall was running deep and couldn't even get back to the line of scrimmage in time for the Jets to clock it for one more play.
Oakland Raiders 37 at San Diego Chargers 29
Aaron Schatz: Philip Rivers woke up on the wrong side of the bed today. The accuracy is just not there, and if Rivers isn't playing like a top quarterback, the Chargers have nothing else going.
Tom Gower: Remember back in 2012, when Norv Turner tried running seven-step drops with UDFA rookie Mike Harris at left tackle and Rivers looked awful and had a negative DVOA? With all the offensive line injuries in particular and with Antonio Gates out again today, 2015 Rivers is starting to remind me a lot of 2012 Rivers. Just looks uncomfortable, not processing things well, and just not as accurate. Too bad, really, since I enjoy watching Rivers when he's playing well.
Vince Verhei: Early on it was easy to write Oakland's outburst off as a one-man show, because it was mostly Amari Cooper doing big things, and Amari Cooper is awesome. But then third-round rookie Clive Walford caught the first touchdown of his career, and Michael Crabtree added a score on a wide receiver screen, and suddenly David Carr has thrown more touchdowns in the first 35 minutes of this game then Aaron Rodgers did in an entire contest last week against the same defense. And they're not running much, but Latavius Murray and Taiwan Jones have been effective when given the ball. It's been a long time, but we're going to have to accept that the Raiders offense is currently pretty good -- efficient, explosive, and diverse.
Aaron Schatz: Given the ages of the players, the Raiders should continue to get better. That's going to be a hot playoff pick next year. Cooper, Murray, Carr, Walford, and don't forget left guard Gabe Jackson, who is excellent and only in his second season. There's young talent on the defense, too, starting of course with Khalil Mack. The Raiders chapter this year told the story about how we can't laugh at this team anymore, and nobody is laughing today.
Dallas Cowboys 20 at New York Giants 27
Aaron Schatz: I know that Brandon Weeden had those ridiculous completion streaks early on after he became the Cowboys' starting quarterback, but still, Matt Cassel looks better than Weeden when it comes to decision-making on the short and mid-range passes. But he's not really going deep at all.
Vince Verhei: I think Cassel made more big plays in the first half today than Weeden has all year. He has also thrown some very intercept-able passes, but he is clearly the best of their terrible backup options.
Orleans Darkwa has been the Giants' best offensive player today. For name value alone, I hope that trend continues.
Cassel's intercept-able passes are actually being intercepted in the third quarter. The first resulted in a pick-six for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, though that was really on Terrance Williams for running a bad out route and letting DRC beat him to the ball. Next drive, Cowboys reach midfield, and Williams gets open on a 9-route for what should have been a touchdown, but Cassel's throw is way late and way underthrown, and Brandon Meriweather has time to get over and intercept the ball just outside the end zone.
Rueben Randle makes a big catch on third down against Brandon Carr to get the Giants out of bad field position, but the drives stalls on a sack (Greg Hardy showing up big today) and the Giants get a field goal to go up 20-13.
So I'm watching the Giants get all they can handle from Cassel and the Cowboys, and thinking about the Eagles-Panthers matchup tonight, and it's still realistic that the day will end with every team in the NFC East having a losing record. That got me thinking about the NFC playoff race as a whole. Somebody's going to win this division, but none of the other NFC East teams are sniffing the postseason. Either Atlanta or Carolina will probably win the South, with the loser probably still getting a wild card berth. Arizona and Green Bay should still win their divisions. That leaves one wild card spot available between Seattle and Minnesota, who play each other in a few weeks. Anyone else likely to get in? Anyone have faith in the Rams or Saints or someone?
Aaron Schatz: Oh, the Rams are so inconsistent that something could happen for them. We believed in them in the preseason, so hey, I might as well still believe. And honestly, the NFC East teams are better than their records, unlike the AFC South teams. One of them could rise up to get a wild card.
Or not. Williams makes a toe-tapping sideline catch to convert the ensuing third-and-9. Devin Street then makes a toe-tapper in the corner of the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown, and suddenly the Cowboys are up 21-20.
Aaron Schatz: Also worth noting how well the Dallas defense has played today. Having a pass rush (i.e., having Greg Hardy) helps a secondary out, but that secondary is also playing better than expected. Morris Claiborne seems to finally be a reasonable NFL cornerback, although he'll never live up to his draft position.
Vince Verhei: So I was wrong about two things:
1) Street's touchdown didn't put Dallas ahead, it tied the score at 20. Not that it matters, because Dwayne Harris returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown to put the Giants up 27-20, and the Cowboys never really threatened to score again.
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2) The perfect summary of the 2015 Cowboys season is Greg Hardy losing his mind and getting into physical and verbal confrontations with multiple teammates after Harris' touchdown.
Man, you've gotta feel bad for the Cowboys here. If only there had been some sort of sign that Hardy might be prone to emotional outbursts and violent behavior, then they wouldn't look so foolish now.
Cian Fahey: Considering what happened the last time the media rained down its judgment on a player in a sideline argument (a Cowboy coincidentally or not so coincidentally), I'd caution against making judgments on that kind of stuff.
Philadelphia Eagles 16 at Carolina Panthers 27
Aaron Schatz: In the first year of Chip Kelly's offense, the Eagles threw down the field for a ton of deep passes. Have they just completely given up on that? And I wonder -- did Kelly decide he didn't need a quarterback who could throw deep, or did he go out and get Sam Bradford and then discover, "Hey, it turns out Bradford's inability to throw deep in St. Louis was actually a thing that happened and might be predictive of future performance!"
Here we are about to hit halftime and the top receivers for the Eagles are Miles Austin (two for 30), Zach Ertz (two for 17), and Darren Sproles (two for 6). I know the Panthers have a good defense, but YUCK.
Tom Gower: Chip Kelly inherited a good offensive line, at least once Lane Johnson improved, that stayed healthy for all 16 games and paved the way for everything they did offensively. That line has steadily deteriorated for the past two seasons without being adequately supplemented, culminating in tonight's loss of Jason Peters. Add in a lack of explosiveness at wide receiver this season, with DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin both playing elsewhere, teams getting used to what Kelly does, and the deep throws are a thing of the past.
Aaron Schatz: Bradford looking better in the second half, and they've been getting the ball a little bit more downfield... but still not any real deep pass attempts.
Tom Gower: No downfield pass attempts, but I thought at least Bradford did throw the ball past the sticks on the final fourth-and-9 attempt. I'd love to see a tally of how many more yards Bradford would have if the Eagles receivers had caught all the passes that hit them in their hands, be that Ryan Mathews' one-foot act or the fourth-down incompletion to Austin or any of the others.