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Lions Prove to be the Fertilizer Eagles Need

The struggling Eagles routed the winless Lions on Sunday at Ford Field

DETROIT - The Lions' offense was the water, the winless team's defense was the fertilizer, and heck call the Dave Fipp-less special teams the sunlight.

However, you want to frame it, Dan Campbell's now 0-8 team was exactly what the doctor ordered for Nick Sirianni and the ailing Eagles (3-5) during a 44-6 rout at Ford Field.

There was eyewash on the Eagles' offense from Sirianni, aggressiveness on defense from the embattled Jonathan Gannon, and even a nod to the stasis of the fanbase by running the football consistently. 

All because Philadelphia could do whatever it wanted against the toothless Lion in captivity.

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It was the first time the Eagles had been favored coming into the game this season and you could see why as Philadelphia cruised to one of the easier wins you'll ever see in the NFL.


Boston Scott - Largely forgotten until Miles Sanders' injury last week, Scott got his opportunity against the Lions and cashed it in like he was playing the New York Giants. Scott finished with 12 carries for 60 yards and two touchdowns while spearheading a running game that produced 236 yards, and three 50-yard rushers in one game (Jalen Hurts, Jordan Howard) for only the third time over the past 30 years.

The Pass Rush - The Eagles haven't gotten home on the pass rush all that much this season but playing a stationary target at QB who has few weapons at his disposal is all the Eagles needed. Jared Goff was sacked six times with Josh Sweat ensnaring the QB on two occasions and Derek Barnett, Milton Williams, and Tarron Jackson getting sacks for the first time this season. Hassan Ridgeway was the other sack man.

Dallas Goedert - There will be no discounts on Dallas Goedert. The tight end would already be a star in a more high-volume passing offense. The Eagles didn't need much of a passing game against dismal Detroit and really didn't have one outside Goedert until a comeback throw to DeVonta Smith with less than 5 minutes to go in the third quarter.

T.J. Edwards - The struggling Eric Wilson was a healthy scratch and Edwards was the biggest benefactor to that. In recent weeks Gannon had begun to rotate the LBs with Edwards and Davion Taylor as the starters and run-support options while Alex Singleton and Wilson handled passing downs.

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With no real threats on the Lions' offense, Gannon stuck with Edwards to excellent results. Whether that continues against better competition remains to be seen but Edwards should at least be given the opportunity.

The Detroit Connection - Avonte Maddox, who is from Detroit, and Darius Slay, who spent the first seven seasons of his career with the Lions, were tabbed by Sirianni to go out for the coin toss. In other words, this was a big game for both and they teamed up in the third quarter when Maddox punched the football DeAndre Swift and Slay scooped it up for a 33-yard score.

Maddox asked Slay for the football and handed it to his father.


Kenny Gainwell - Much will be made of Gainwell "falling behind" Boston Scott and Jordan Howard but with a week to prepare after Miles Sanders' injury the Eagles went back to their normal setup with Scott and Howard rotating in the RB1 Sanders role with Gainwell serving is his normal receiving/hurry-up role.

The disconnect is the Eagles had been behind so much with Sanders and now they had the lead early and just built on it, meaning the RB1 had the larger role.

Injuries - The Eagles lost right guard Jack Driscoll to a hand injury early and then Jalen Reagor to an ankle injury after the young receiver finally showed a little life as a manufactured touch player.


Jalen Hurts - Hurts was great running the football and not so great throwing it with the same bugaboos showing notably, too often failing to pull the trigger and pulling it late when he did.

-John McMullen contributes Eagles coverage for'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 and YouTube. John is also the host of his own show "Extending the Play" on AM1490 in South Jersey. You can reach him at or on Twitter @JFMcMullen

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