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Inside the Final Play of Eagles Loss to Giants

DeVonta Smith and Dallas Goedert were the first two options, but it was Jalen Reagor who got a chance to be the hero but dropped the ball

The Eagles wanted to get the football to DeVonta Smith in the waning seconds with the game on the line during a 13-7 loss to the New York Giants.

You know the result by now as Philadelphia's best receiver raised his arm in an attempt to get Jalen Hurts to pull the trigger, incensing fans who watched the embattled Jalen Regaor drop a well-thrown ball that would have put the Eagles on the precipice of victory.

Hurts ultimately uncorked a throw after maneuvering in the pocket for a bit, one that found Reagor near the goal line before the 2020 first-round pick mishandled it, putting an exclamation point on what was a dismal 17.5 passer rating for Hurts.

The fact that Smith was unhappy and the fan base has closed the book on Reagor seems to have kept the result unfocused where a throw to a different more capable receiver trumps what should have been a big play if only competency was the measuring stick.

“I’m sure he was upset, I was upset too,” Hurts said when asked after the loss about Smith's reaction. “People express themselves differently, but we came up short in the game, you know what I mean? And that hurts.”

Smith didn't speak to reporters after the game but Sirianni admitted afterward that there was a discussion about getting him the football before the final play.

“Yeah, he wants the ball in a critical situation like that,” the coach said. “They were playing two-man in that scenario and they had played it three snaps in a row, and it was two-man on that one as well.

"The type of play that he wanted in that scenario wasn’t going to be good. But I love the fact that he wants the ball in crunch time and wants it on his shoulders when the game is on the line. That’s what he was telling me, and I respect that. We had to do what we thought was best for that one with the coverages they were playing. We didn’t execute.”

A day later, Sirianni went deeper into the denouement of the game and noted that while the play design wasn't what Smith necessarily wanted, it did put the rookie star at the top of the pecking order when it came to the progression but Hurts decided not to pull the trigger early, not necessarily an unwise decision.

Jalen Reagor sits dejectedly after letting a pass slip through his hands to end the Eagles' loss to the Giants

Jalen Reagor after dropping a fourth-down pass that could have helped the Eagles beat the Giants on Sunday.

"We ran a shallow cross play where DeVonta was the first read in that play," Sirianni explained. "As a matter of fact, on that play, too, it's DeVonta 1A and then you could say [TE] Dallas [Goedert] is 1B. The defense that they played eliminated the 1B read of Dallas and put it onto DeVonta."

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While crossing the field, Giant cornerback James Bradberry did an excellent job of flattening under the route, something that would have demanded a very good touch pass from Hurts, not the strength of the young QB right now.

"You got to give them [the Giants] credit, too," said Sirianni. "They did a good job taking the – of undercutting the shallow route that we ran. 24 [Giants CB James Bradberry] put himself in a good position there."

RELATED: Accountable but Inefficient, Jalen Reagor Struggles Again in Loss to Giants

According to Sirianni, the execution wasn't there from either Smith or the other young WR on the cross action designed to help create the separation: Quez Watkins.

"We didn't do a great job executing the route discipline out of that play with DeVonta and Quez," he said.

From there it turned into a scramble play and Smith turned up the field where there was a small window for Hurts to fit the ball into Smith but Giants safety Xavier McKinney was lurking and the QB had already moved on and focused elsewhere, resulting in a throw to Reagor that should have had the Eagles on the precipice of winning the game.

"It turned into a scramble, and we got an open look," Sirianni said. "Jalen made a good throw. Like I said, want to just be able to finish that play off.

"Again, no one wants to make that play more than Jalen [Reagor]. It never comes down to one play. We put ourselves in that position where it came down to the last play, where I know all the eyes were on him and all the criticism will be on him, but this is an ultimate team game, and there are a lot of other things led to that coming down to the last play."

-John McMullen contributes Eagles coverage for SI.com's EagleMaven and is the NFL Insider for JAKIB Media. You can listen to John, alongside legendary sports-talk host Jody McDonald every morning from 8-10 on ‘Birds 365,” streaming live on both PhillyVoice.com and YouTube. John is also the host of his own show "Extending the Play" on AM1490 in South Jersey. You can reach him at jmcmullen44@gmail.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen

Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles or www.eaglemaven.com and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.