Nick Sirianni Takes Accountability for Weapons Disappearing

The Eagles WRs went dark for the final 36 minutes of Sunday's loss to San Francisco
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PHILADELPHIA - Any time there is a 91-yard play in an NFL game, it's by definition a highlight.

Jalen Hurts' long hookup with Quez Watkins in Sunday's 17-11 loss to San Francisco was not only the highlight of the game for Philadelphia, but it was also the last time any of the Eagles' receivers were heard from.

And Watkins' big play happened with 6:27 left until halftime.

From that point, Hurts played more than 36 minutes of football, ran more than 30 offensive plays, and managed to complete just 4-of-12 passes for 39 yards with none of the successful plays doing to DeVonta Smith, Jalen Reagor, or Watkins.

It was like the WRs took a bow after Watkins' big play and exited stage left except they were actually on the field and the group was targeted eight more times with an ugly 0-for-8 to show for it.

So what was the problem?

Inaccuracy from Hurts? Poor route-running perhaps? Or so just good defense from a San Francisco team without its two top cornerbacks?

How about a perfect storm of all of the above?

"We always want to get the ball into our playmakers' hands, but a little bit - obviously a lot of that is what they give to you and what they don't give to you," Sirianni explained Monday. "Again, some of those are designed to get the ball to the wideouts, but something breaks down and then (Hurts has] got to scramble, right. It's not always as it seems based on where the ball went.

"Sometimes it's what the defense gives you. So there are other factors that go into it."

That seems like a solid explanation but when things were bogging down where were the WR screens that were such a big part of the success in Week 1?

Hurts was last in the NFL in air yards per pass per NextGenStats.com in Week 1 at 3.7 yards-per and No. 1 entering Monday night's game in Week 2 at 14.6 a wide gesticulation that doesn't necessarily make sense when dealing with a young QB still trying to prove his accuracy.

"We've got to get our guys the ball and give them an opportunity to make plays," Sirianni said. "At the end of the day when you're struggling, we were moving the football. I really felt like we were moving the football. I think we had one three-and-out to start the second half, but in my opinion, we were moving the football, moving the football, and then it would stall out."

Much like the failed fourth-down "Philly Unspecial" that turned the momentum of the game toward San Francisco, Sirianni took accountability for not making things easier on what is a very young playmaking corps.

"When it's stalling out, you've got to think players, players, players over plays," Sirianni said. "I've got to do a better job at that, and that's my responsibility. That's me holding myself accountable because when we all need to do that, we all need to look in the mirror and hold ourselves accountable before we can hold others accountable."

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-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.