Q&A: Big Red Got Best Of Gannon
In Super Bowl LVII, an overall stellar offensive performance by Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts was overshadowed by a defensive letdown and costly mistakes.
On the latest “Q&A” podcast on Inside The Birds, former Eagles standouts Jason Avant and Quintin Mikell shared their thoughts on the 38-35 Super Bowl loss to the Chiefs and looked ahead to the upcoming offseason.
Quintin Mikell: “He was absolutely phenomenal. Obviously, we know what he can do running the ball, we know what he can do as a leader, but his accuracy on a lot of those throws – especially in the first half – were just phenomenal. That throw to Dallas Goedert on the sideline, it’s a dangerous throw and a tight window, I was thoroughly impressed with his performance. It’s unfortunate losing the game because the loss really overshadowed how well he played. The turnover wasn’t great, but he bounced back and put together drive after drive. This team is in very good hands moving along with him at the helm.”
Jason Avant: “I thought that he played outstanding. From the beginning of the game to the end of the game, you had a sense that the Chiefs understood the game plan that was designed. The Chiefs game plan was like this: we’re going to stop them from running the ball traditionally and we’re going to put the ball in the hands of Jalen Hurts, and they did that…We had 17 rushes by non-quarterbacks, and averaged under three yards a carry. Therefore, Jalen Hurts took on a larger role when it comes to running the football, so they put it in his hands and Hurts answered the call. He had to make some special plays”
Mikell: “That hold was extremely frustrating for me as a defensive back. He had bad technique from the beginning. It was holding, I disagree with the ref making the call in that moment, especially when there had been holding all over the field. I watched four quarters of Haason Reddick just get straight up mauled. When it feels like when you’re picking and choosing when you’re going to throw the flag, that’s when I have a problem…it was bad technique by Bradberry. If he aligns correctly and his eyes are in the right spot, he’s not going to take the fake on that whip route. He’s going to play with good technique, stay square, and use his hands. All across the board I don’t think it was Bradberry’s best game technique wise or scheme wise.”
Mikell: “He deserves all of the smoke. He was going to get out-coached, but this is what we have all been alluding to from last year. The entire time he’s been here, he’s played it safe. So what happens when you’re in a situation where you’re playing a star QB and tight end and a coach that’s very experienced in what he’s doing and you haven’t used all of your tools to that point? You’re expecting a team that’s never really blitzed or played a whole lot of zero coverage or man coverage, just basically sat in a zone and allowed the defensive front to do what they do. When you’re asked as a coordinator to step up and make adjustments and you’ve never practiced doing that, this is what happens. You had two wide open walk-in touchdowns at critical times.”
Avant: “Gannon deserves a lot of heat. There are situations where you have to come up with a stop in order to win…Not only was there no answer, the guys at the Super Bowl, the biggest stage, didn’t know what was going on with a simple motion. It was man-to-man, and your guys aren’t accustomed to playing man-to-man, so your guys are in and out and doing all types of stupid stuff for no reason…Notice that in the second half, Patrick Mahomes did not have to throw the football. The ball was out of his hands, first read, no pass rush, it was out so quick they could do nothing.”
Avant: “They have some young talent and they can add a lot. The good thing is that you don’t need much on offense. You may need to draft one lineman and a third receiver, but everything else should be on defense.”
– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com.
Listen to the latest “Q&A” podcast featuring former Eagles standouts Quintin Mikell and Jason Avant:
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