DENVER -- The highs and many lows of the Eagles' 52-20 loss to the Broncos on Sunday:
↓ – The Eagles had little chance of winning, but Kelly made an un-Kelly like choice when he punted at the Broncos 37 on 4th down and 6 late in the second quarter. It could be argued he made the right call, but it seemed to run contrary to his aggressiveness. Overall, though, Kelly didn’t have his team properly prepared from top to bottom.
↓ – It’s difficult to kill the Eagles defensive coordinator considering the lack of talent he has, but Davis was overmatched against Peyton Manning and after four games, it’s difficult to find a silver lining.
↓ – Vick was nowhere near the main reason why the Eagles lost, although there will surely be calls for Kelly to start Nick Foles next week. Kelly said it won’t happen. Vick was sharp early when the Eagles still had a chance. He did hold onto the ball too long as the game progressed, though.
↑ – He performed the way everyone thought he would against a defense that has the identity of a fruit fly.
Eagles special teams
↓ – A kickoff returned for a touchdown, a punt blocked and returned for a touchdown – did that ever happen in the same game when Bobby April was supposedly the worst special teams coordinator ever? Dave Fipp’s units were terrible on Sunday.
↑ – The former Eagles cornerback shut down DeSean Jackson for most of the game. Rodgers-Cromartie ate a little humble pie this offseason when he signed with the Broncos for only 1-year and $5 million. But he has been outstanding thus far. There’s always risk that Rodgers-Cromartie will revert to no-tackle mode, but he held Jackson to two catches for 34 yards on this day.
↓ – The Eagles left guard appeared to have another solid game overall, but the holding call – or the tackle -- he took in the second quarter called back a 19-yard pass from Vick to Jackson that advanced the offense to the Broncos 22. The Birds, trailing 21-13, were pushed back to their own 49 and eventually punted.
↓ – He led the Eagles with three catches for 57 yards, but Celek’s third down drop on the Eagles’ second drive was the first of many errors on offense. Vick tossed a strike over the middle that hit the Eagles tight end on the numbers and he could not hold on.
↓ – The rookie right tackle continued to have his struggles. Almost no one expected Johnson to come in right away and dominate on the Eagles offensive line. But four games in, Chip Kelly needs to give his first draft pick a little more help with chip blocks and double teams.
↓ – The entire Eagles secondary had a rough day against one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever throw a football. The veteran quarterback, though, got beat on a number of long throws. Williams got lucky when Manning overthrew Eric Decker, who beat him on a double move. But the Broncos receiver toasted him later for a 52-yard bomb just before the half.
↓ – The Eagles’ other offseason addition at cornerback was equally substandard, but a third quarter pass interference call in the end zone against Fletcher was of the ticky-tack variety.
↓ – The game was over, but the Eagles kicker missed a 40-something-yard field goal attempt for the third straight game.
↑ – The Birds defensive line got pushed around for long stretches, but Thornton – “Swamp” to his teammates – made a strong individual effort by sacking Manning. He pushed center Manny Ramirez back five yards with a bull rush and recorded the Eagles’ only sack of Manning.