Five quick postgame observations on the Eagles’ 31-3 blowout win over the Chicago Bears on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field:
With a predictably stifling effort against the NFL’s 25th-ranked offense, the Birds won their ninth game in a row, the first time that’s happened since 2003 when they went to the NFC Championship Game.
They not only shut out the Bears in the first half, they did not allow a first down and the Bears got no further than the Eagles’ 42. The Bears entered the game averaging 131.8 rushing yards per game, but against the Eagles’ top-ranked rushing defense, managed only 6 yards, led by quarterback Mitchell Trubisky; subtract his yards and the Bears ran for minus-6 yards.
Jordan Howard entered with 841 rushing yards, third in the league. He finished with 6 yards on 7 carries. They didn’t sniff a point until their first possession of the second half, when Carlos Santos kicked a 38-yard field goal. Trubisky finished 17-for-33 for 147 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions, 38.3 a passer rating. He was sacked twice.
From Wentz it came
The Wentz Wagon occasionally was wobbly, but he finished 23-for-36 for 227 yards, three touchdowns and a 109.4 passer rating. He was sacked once, and ran five times for 29 yards.
Wentz remains first in the league with 28 TD passes. He nailed Zach Ertz with a 17-yard TD pass, then slipped the blitz of corner Cre’Von LeBlanc for a 16-yard run, but missed Mack Hollins on an easy touchdown. No worries.
He found Nelson Agholor, who sprinted most of the 15-yard distance to the end zone and flipped in for a thrilling TD, and finished the first half with an 8-yard toss to Alshon Jeffery.
Maybe it was the tryptophan, but the Birds seemed groggy with the ball in their hands; they fumbled four times and lost three of them.
Malcolm Jenkins fumbled away an interception in the first quarter. LeGarette Blount fumbled away the Eagles’ third possession, and then again fumbled late in the fourth quarter. Jay Ajayi fumbled into the end zone early in the fourth quarter, which Nelson Agholor covered for a touchdown.
Big Zach attack
Tight end Zach Ertz took another step toward his first Pro Bowl as he caught 10 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown, the first Eagle with a 100-yard game this season. He also was the last Eagle with a 100-yard game, when he collected 139 in the meaningless finale against the Cowboys last season.
Doug Pederson, analytics disciple, continued to go with the numbers on fourth down. He converted three of four fourth-down chances. They finished the game 11-for-15, which is 73.3 percent, the best success rate for any team with at least 10 tries, and their 15 tries were the most among teams with a winning record.