Steelers at Eagles: 3 things we learned
Here are three of the biggest takeaways from Sunday’s Steelers at Eagles game in Week 3 of the 2016 NFL season.
The Philadelphia Eagles showed fans and analysts on Sunday that they’re far from pretenders so far in the 2016 NFL season. In their Week 3 game against the Steelers, they put together a dominant win, taking down one of the early elite teams in the league, 34-3. Once again, their rookie quarterback was at the forefront and now the team is celebrating a 3-0 start to the latest season.
Meanwhile, the huge loss has the Steelers and their fans scratching their heads. The team was considered an offensive juggernaut by many this season but looked far from it in today’s defeat. With just three points on the board and the inability to get much going on the ground, are the Steelers in trouble?
Here are three takeaways from Philadelphia’s big win against Pittsburgh in Week 3.
1. Carson Wentz is the real deal so far this season.
Wentz had his best performance so far this season against the team many were calling a measuring stick for the rookie quarterback. The Eagles were able to improve to 3-0 thanks to smart decision making and big plays from a guy in just his third game in the league. Wentz was even compared to the opposing quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, on his throw down the field to Darren Sproles for a 73-yard touchdown. In today’s effort, Wentz went 23-of-31 for 301 yards passing and still has yet to throw an interception. He was clearly the driving force of today’s offense which dominated a Steelers team that ranked near the top of the league in that category last season.
2. This Eagles defense is amongst the best in the league.
Right now the top three defenses in the league in terms of fewest yards allowed belong to the Seattle Seahawks, Baltimore Ravens, and the Philadelphia Eagles. So far, the Eagles have given up less than 600 yards of total offense to their three opponents. For the season, they rank second in fewest points allowed to opponents, with an average of just 12 points given up per game.
In today’s game, they completely shut down the Steelers all over the field. It was most noticeable when it came to the rushing game, as Pittsburgh managed to achieve just 28 yards on the ground. However, they also held one of the league’s tried and true quarterbacks to a low-scoring output of just a field goal, despite Antonio Brown finishing with 140 yards for the game. In particular, Fletcher Fox was huge with two sacks, two quarterback hits, and a forced fumble.
3. The Steelers can’t possibly be as bad as they looked today.
Pittsburgh was on a roll in their first two games of the season but looked absolutely horrible in today’s double-digit beatdown. In fact, it may be the franchise’s worst loss in the past two decades. The fact that Antonio Brown bounced back after his disappointing performance against the Bengals is one thing, but it wasn’t enough to help them get by a smothering Eagles’ defense.
Roethlisberger was clearly off his game today, and the lack of key receiver Martavis Bryant was glaring. The good news is they’ll have their top running back, Le’Veon Bell, on the field for Week 4 as he returns from suspension. It will also be a home game, giving them a chance to put together a quality performance against the Chiefs. Still, Big Ben will need to figure out who else he can target beyond just Antonio Brown in order to make this offense work best.
The Eagles are now in sole possession of the NFC East, sitting with a 3-0 record atop the division. They’ll be able to celebrate their hot start to this season with a bye week for Week 4. The Pittsburgh Steelers will try to bounce back when they host Kansas City in Sunday Night Football at Heinz Field.