The three-game winning streak is over. The Philadelphia Eagles lost to the New York Giants 13-7 in Week 12 in what can best be described as an ugly football game – and one they could have easily won if not for a last-second drop.
Jalen Reagor saw a beautiful ball from Jalen Hurts go through his fingertips with 16 seconds left. The second-year receiver may have been tackled at the one-yard line. Or maybe Reagor’s momentum would have carried him into the end zone. Either way, the catch should have been made. Everyone saw it. Everyone knew it.
“Checks your [man] card, kind of a check of who you are,” Hurts said of the loss. “And it’s an opportunity to be resilient and it’s an opportunity to go through adversity. We’ll move forward and learn from it as a football team.”
One miscue would have been enough to justifiably aggravate the unforgiving Philly faithful. But Reagor dropped two possible game-winning touchdowns in the final two minutes. The first one clanked off his helmet; the second one went through his hands.
“He’s going to want that one back,” head coach Nick Sirianni said of Reagor’s second drop. “It never comes down to one play. We turned it over four times. It’s never just one guy. It’s all of us.”
It’s easy to scapegoat Reagor for the loss but the entire offense struggled. Hurts went 14-of-31 for 129 yards and chucked three interceptions. His pick with eight seconds left in the first half cost them at least a field goal. Boston Scott fumbled the ball away with 1:20 in the fourth quarter. And the two fourth-quarter drops from Reagor put the final nail in the coffin.
“Just two drops that I would say very uncharacteristic [for me] but just got to go through the highs and lows and go to the next week and make the plays,” Reagor said. “Just keep going, you know I had catches and stuff like that, so I just got to keep going and not get down on myself.”
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Eagles Twitter Savagely Roasts Reagor
Reagor told reporters he wanted to “take ownership” for his drops and he did just that. The 2020 first-rounder answered every question hurled at him while explaining what went wrong on that last-second scramble drill.
“”It’s just a drop, just like any receiver could have,” Reagor said. “You got to take the heat. It’s fine. It’s for me to take ownership. Whatever’s going to be said is going to be said regardless.”
The 22-year-old receiver – the guy selected one pick ahead of Justin Jefferson – might want to stay off social media for awhile. Eagles Twitter wasn’t holding back after the game, with some folks calling for the team to flat-out cut him. Reagor finished with two catches for 31 yards, including a leaping 21-yard catch in the first half. That one was clearly in the rear-view mirror.
Sirianni defended the speedster when a reporter questioned Reagor’s explosiveness. He remains a key cog on the Eagles’ offense.
“Is he explosive enough? No doubt,” Sirianni said. “He’s one of our fastest guys. He’s one of of our quickest guys. He’s one of our toughest guys.”
Jalen Hurts Says ‘Put It On Me’
Everyone deserved a big piece of humble pie against New York, especially the new “franchise starter.” After the game, Hurts was quick to point the finger on Sunday’s defeat at himself.
“It’s not on Jalen Reagor, it’s not on anyone else in the game, put it on me,” Hurts said. “We came up short in the game and that hurts especially in a fashion like this where we had so many opportunities. When you turn the ball over like that, which we don’t – four times, when you turn the ball over like that, you don’t deserve to win.”
DeVonta Smith lobbied for the ball when the Eagles broke the huddle on the game’s final play, according to Sirianni. He didn’t get it as Hurts looked in Reagor’s direction and Smith ran off the field visibly upset. Smith wasn’t targeted once on the team’s final drive.
“He wants the ball in a critical situation like that,” Sirianni said of Smith. “I love the fact that he wants the ball in crunch time and wants it on his shoulders with the game on the line.”