The Eagles remained the only undefeated team in the NFL after an impressive 35-13 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday. It has a nice ring to it that often rings, “The only undefeated team in the NFL.”
The Eagles are 7-0 for the first time since 2004, when they won the NFC Championship before losing 24-21 to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXIX.
This is the second time in franchise history that the Eagles have started a season 7-0. In 2004, in Pittsburgh, ironically, the Eagles’ winning streak was snapped by the Steelers.
The Eagles have yet to trail in the second half of this season.
Quarterback Jalen Hurts and receiver A.J. Brown put on a show with six completions for 156 yards and three touchdowns. Hurts threw for a career-best four touchdowns and 285 yards, completing 19 of 28 and throwing the ball with an accuracy that only his receivers could match.
Avante Maddox’s fourth-quarter fumble recovery and C.J. After Gardner-Johnson, in seven games, the Eagles turned the ball over twice, causing an NFL-high 16 turnovers (10 interceptions, six fumble recoveries) for a plus-14 turnover ratio. Fourth interruption.
With the win, Hurts tied the franchise record for longest regular-season winning streak by an Eagles quarterback with 10-straight, eclipsing the previous mark of nine shared by Hall of Famers Norm Van Brocklin (1960), Donovan McNabb (2003). ) and its predecessor, Carson Wentz (2017).
The Eagles held the Steelers to one of 12 on third-down conversions, and ended the game by holding the Steelers without a third-down conversion for the 10th straight time.
The 2022 Eagles look unbeatable — because right now, they are.
The Eagles’ 35-13 thrashing of the Pittsburgh Steelers was mixed with the good and the bad and a light touch of the ugly.
Eagles’ first series on defense. Jordan Davis pulled down Naji Harris for no gain on the first play of the game, Javon Hargrave rushed Kenny Pickett for a yard gain on second down and an eight-yard sack of linebacker Hassan Reddick ended the Steelers’ drive. 18.
Eagles’ first series on offense. Hurts was five for seven for 60 yards, leading the Eagles to a 7–0 lead on a nine-play, 68-yard drive. The Eagles converted two third downs and a decisive fourth-and-two at the Pittsburgh 44, which the Eagles completely ran. When Hurts completed a short five-yard pass to tight end Dallas Goedert at the Pittsburgh 39, he was running a route to Steelers defenseman Miles Sanders on play-action. Two plays later, they hit A.J. Brown for a 39-yard touchdown pass.
Receiver A.J. Brown made a mid-air adjustment between Steelers strong safety Terrell Edmunds and free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick on his 39-yard touchdown pass on the Eagles’ first drive. Brown jumped right in front of Fitzpatrick and timed the catch perfectly.
Center Jason Kelce barely noticed chipping linebacker Devin Bush on a Hurts-to-Brown 39-yard touchdown pass. Kelce made sure Bush was reminded of that after the play.
Brown’s second touchdown catch, a 27-yard reception, beat Steelers cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon over the right shoulder toward the pylon on a third-and-eight play.
Hurts’ 27-yard touchdown pass to Brown was thrown perfectly—as was the 29-yard touchdown toss. After his third TD pass, left tackle Jordan Mailata playfully raised his arms and leaned on Hurts with a big smile on his face as the Eagles took a big 21-7 lead.
Cornerback Avonte Maddox tackles Steven Sims on first-and-15 at the Pittsburgh 12. Maddox made a brilliant read of it on the Steelers’ third drive.
Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox tackles Harris on second-and-18 at the Steelers nine on the Steelers’ third series.
Brown’s third touchdown catch, this time between Witherspoon and Fitzpatrick, again amazing. Slow down the play and you’ll notice it’s even more noticeable. Witherspoon’s left hand was pulling on the knuckle of Brown’s left arm – and Brown still had the strength to catch the ball. Brown was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct for pointing at Witherspoon and Fitzpatrick after the play. It was a 29-yard touchdown on first-and-10. By then, who cared? Brown finished the half with five catches for 113 yards and three touchdowns — numbers most NFL receivers wish they had all game.
Through three quarters, the Eagles defense held Pittsburgh to one-for-10 on third-down conversions, including eight-straight third-down attempts.
Defensive tackle Javon Hargrave’s nine-yard strip sack on first-and-10 at the Eagles 36, which was recovered by Maddox at the Eagles 38. He dashed the Steelers’ faint hopes of a comeback with 13:30 left. Rum. An 11-yard touchdown run by Miles Sanders led to a 35–13 lead.
Guard Isaac Siumalo sacked linebacker Alex Highsmith on Sanders’ fourth-quarter touchdown run. When using left tackle Mailata, he looked like Steelers defensive tackle Cameron Heyward, throwing his arms up looking for a holding call seven yards down the field. By then, Sanders was in the end zone.
Safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson 11-yard sack on third-and-five at the Eagles 40. The Steelers were one of 11 on third-down conversions—preventing the Steelers from getting a first down at that point. Gardner-Johnson later threw his third interception at the Eagles 20 and his fourth interception of the season at the seven. Linebacker T.J. Edwards made it possible by deflecting Pickett’s pass. He went 1/12 on third-down conversions for the Steelers and 10-straight times the Eagles stopped them on critical downs.
Cornerbacks James Bradberry and Maddox lost a Steelers receiver on a 14-yard catch at the Steelers 25 with 10 seconds to go on their second possession. It was Pittsburgh’s first first down of the game and instilled a sense of confidence in Steelers rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett.
The Steelers’ second possession was not a good series for Bradberry. He was hit with a holding call (somewhat debatable) on second-and-seven at the Steelers 42, denying a nine-yard sack by Brandon Graham. The Eagles went from forcing the Steelers on third-and-16 to facing the Steelers on first-and-10 at the 47. The Steelers didn’t help themselves by being flagged for delay on the next play. Bradbury was burned later when he lost Derek Watt in the end zone, while receiver Chase Claypool flicked a one-yard touchdown pass to Watt on fourth-and-goal for the Steelers’ only TD.
Eagles defense on Steelers second drive. Pickett was six-for-six for 53 yards, completing passes to six different receivers. Pittsburgh gained most of its yards up the middle of the field. It was a 13-play, 75-yard drive that consumed 7:26 of the first-quarter clock. It served two purposes: It brought Pittsburgh back momentarily — and kept the Eagles’ offense off the field.
Defensive end Brandon Graham was called for a rare “defensive” delay of the game when he tried to trick the Steelers into snapping the ball early on fourth-and-goal at the Eagles two. A half-yardage penalty forced Steelers coach Mike Tomlin to reconsider the field goal and go for a touchdown, resulting in a Claypool-to-Watt one-yard score and a 7–7 tie.
If the Eagles have a dent, it might be on special teams. The Eagles’ special teams allowed a first down on a fourth-and-two at the Steelers 33. Marcus Allen took a straight snap up the middle for four yards, extending Pittsburgh’s first drive of the second half. This time, in a regular-season game with the Eagles holding a big lead, he could be ignored. Later in the season, when the stakes are much higher, it can mean the end of what is turning into a special season.
In an odd stat line, the Steelers were 4-for-4 on fourth down and one-of-12 on third down. Two of the fourth-down conversions came on Pittsburgh’s first drive of the second half. On fourth-and-one at the Eagles 41, Pickett hit Harris for a nine-yard gain.