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Foles proves he's not ready to start

mark eckel trenton times

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 09:42 AM

Eckel

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Foles proves he's not ready to start

Published: Monday, November 19, 2012, 6:00 AM     Updated: Monday, November 19, 2012, 6:07 AM


By Mark Eckel/The Times


Are you ready for the Trent Edwards Era?

Preseason star Nick Foles got his first NFL start at quarterback yesterday, and let’s just say it didn’t go the way the misguided and misinformed Eagles fans hoped it would.

Going against the Washington Redskins and their 30th ranked pass defense, Foles put up a quarterback rating of 40.5, or 117.8 points lower than that of fellow rookie
quarterback Robert Griffin III yesterday in Washington’s 31-6 laugher over Andy Reid’s Eagles.

“It was a rough game. I’m just trying to stay positive,’’ Foles, the third-round draft pick out of the University of Arizona, said. “If you want to judge after one game, I know I didn’t play well. I’ll evaluate the game, study the film and play better.’’

Foles says the right things. He just doesn’t do them on the field, not when it counts and certainly not yet. As has been stated here several times this season, as fans clamored for the rookie over veteran Mike Vick, he’s not ready. He may, or may not, be one day. But that day isn’t going to be any time soon.

If you don’t play well against the third-worst defense in the league, with three of its best players missing, you’re just not ready.

Foles completed less than half of his passes, 21 for 46, for 204 yards, didn’t throw a touchdown, threw two interceptions and fumbled three times, although the Eagles recovered all three.

“He made some young guy mistakes,’’ Reid said.

And the mistake of keeping Reid for another season after last year’s 8-8 travesty continues to mount for an Eagles team that just might be the worst in football right now.

The Eagles are 3-7, which is one game better than Carolina (2-8), whom they host next Monday night in a game ESPN can’t wait to air, for worst in the NFC. Cleveland (2-8), Kansas City (1-9) and Jacksonville (1-9) all have worse records in the AFC, but the Panthers, Browns and Jaguars all lost tough games in overtime yesterday.

The Eagles were out of this one shortly after it started. Washington took a 7-0 lead less than two minutes into the game on the first of Griffin’s four touchdown passes and as it turned out those seven points were enough.

Yesterday’s loss was the sixth straight for the Eagles, the first time they have lost six straight since 1994 when Rich Kotite’s team lost its final seven games of the season in his final year as head coach.

It was also the fourth straight game the Eagles lost by 13 points, or more, which hadn’t happened since 1976, D Vermeil’s first year as a head coach.

The Eagles offense has now gone six straight quarters without a touchdown, while the defense — under new boss Todd Bowles — has allowed 11 touchdown passes since its last interception.

This is bad, real bad.

This is Kotite’s final season — when a 7-2 start turned into a 7-9 finish after the head coach said his record spoke for itself — bad.

This is Ray Rhodes’ final season — the losingest season in Eagles’ history at 3-13 — bad.

This is Joe “must go’’ Kuharich bad.

This is Brad Goebel, Bobby Hoying and Doug Pederson all rolled into one bad.
And that’s just the offense.

The Eagles couldn’t score a touchdown against a Redskins team that had allowed at least 21 points in all of its first nine games and more than 30 three times, turned the ball over three times and allowed four more sacks.

This revamped defense under the new coordinator isn’t any better. Honestly, it might be worse.

Bowles’ unit allowed Griffin to complete 14 of 15 passes for an even 200 yards to go with the four touchdown passes. It also allowed Griffin to run for 84 of the Redskins’ 169 yards on the ground.

The Eagles did manage two sacks, but failed to force a turnover for the fourth time this season.
In the four games since Bowles replaced the fired Juan Castillo, opposing quarterbacks are 75-for-96 with 11 touchdown passes, no interceptions and a rating of 144.0.

“We’re going to keep battling,’’ Reid said. “We’re going to get ready for the Monday night game.’’

Bet you can’t wait for that one.


(Contact Mark Eckel at meckel@njtimes.com)