September 28, 2021   4 MIN READ

Inside The Birds: Eagles Humbled, Hapless Vs. Cowboys

ITB Recap: Personnel Or Play Calling Issue?


In a 41-21 blowout in Arlington, Texas, the Eagles appeared helpless on Monday Night Football as the Cowboys dominated their way to first place in the NFC East.

On the latest Inside The Birds, Geoff Mosher and Adam Caplan discuss the implosion and if the Eagles can clean up their mess with a tough road ahead.

Jalen Hurts looks on while playing the Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images)


Adam Caplan: “They lead the NFL in penalties through three games. Thirteen accepted penalties [against Dallas], this is bad coaching. I don’t want to hear [Nick] Sirianni’s excuses, there are no excuses. This is bad coaching.”

Geoff Mosher: “You cannot talk about the concept of getting 1 percent better every day, but then have something like that reoccur, week after week after week. They’re not getting 1 percent better at being disciplined, these are not forced errors by the opponent, they’re not strength-of=schedule errors, they’re how you execute and how disciplined you are on a day to day basis.”

Play Calls

Caplan: “Clearly, Sirianni did not have the team prepared, that’s on him, there’s no one else to blame other than him and his coaches. To not run any pre-snap motion, that can’t happen. What are you doing?”

Mosher: “Mind boggling, in 2021 especially.”

Caplan: “Help your players. The only thing I’ll defend from the front office in this thing, they’ve got a lot of talent on offense, more than [Doug] Pederson had to work with last year. They got a lot more speed, [Dallas] Goedert is very gifted. I just don’t understand what this offense is. There’s no rhythm, there’s no run game, they have the ability to run because Sanders is very gifted but they don’t give him to him. I don’t know, man, Sirianni has taken a step back since Week 1. I don’t know what the hell this offense is.”

Josh Sweat

Caplan: “Milton Williams started over Josh Sweat, as I said earlier, this is weird because they just signed him to a $13.3 million [per year] extension, and you’re not starting him? I mean, what’s the excuse now? I don’t know what’s going on here with these personnel changes, very strange, he’s not hurt, he wasn’t on the injury report, so I don’t understand.”

Mosher: “They started Williams, sort of like their training camp blueprint. Against the run, they’re gonna have him play defensive end, gives you a bigger defensive end. Against the pass, move him inside, be a tackle and get that burst. So obviously Dallas comes out with the 12-personnel, they used an offensive lineman as an extra blocker so I see the sense in why they would want Milton Williams out there to get bigger on the defensive end, but that that is yet another admission — as you’re saying — that they are monitoring Josh Sweat’s snaps. They don’t want to play him against the run as much as they will have to, because they want to save him for the pass rush.”

Defensive Adjustments

Mosher: “Whether [or not] the personnel that Jonathan [Gannon] has is good for the defense that he’s running, the Eagles have ignored linebacker for quite a while. When you’re in two-deep coverage you need good linebackers to get off the blocks and stop the run. Of course the interior defensive line, they’re all pass rushers from the wide nine, but how good are they at read-and-react and two-gapping when at times it’s just a totally different style of defense? Now, I think the defensive line is good enough to eventually acclimate and adjust as long as it doesn’t lose anybody else to injuries, but I’m still not sure the back end is exactly what Jonathan Gannon needs. We’ll see. Good coaches adjust to the personnel that they have.”

– Justin Morganstein (@jmotweets_) is a staff writer for

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