Eagles Notes: Eagles special teams allow two TDs in defeat

Quarterback Michael Vick slides in safe for a first down. Vick, who passed for 248 yards and ran for 41, said the Eagles needed to avoid dwelling on the drubbing. RON CORTES / Staff
Quarterback Michael Vick slides in safe for a first down. Vick, who passed for 248 yards and ran for 41, said the Eagles needed to avoid dwelling on the drubbing. RON CORTES / Staff
Posted: October 01, 2013

DENVER - Chip Kelly devotes significant attention in practice to special teams, but the third phase of the game failed Kelly for the second consecutive week.

The Eagles allowed two special-teams touchdowns in a 52-20 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday. The first was a 105-yard kickoff return by Broncos returner Trindon Holliday in the first half. The second came on a blocked punt that was returned 17 yards by Steven Johnson for a score in the fourth quarter.

When asked why the issues arose, Kelly said he must analyze the game film to know exactly what happened.

"I know the guy [on the punt block] kept to the A-gap, but I don't know what the call was up front, so we need to get that matched up and look at the film and make those corrections," Kelly said.

"Same thing on the kickoff return. I know what they were in, and I know what hole they hit. But I don't know what we were in at that point of time to say, 'Hey, we've got to make this adjust.' "

Kicker Alex Henery made two field goals, but he also missed one for the third consecutive week. He missed wide right on a 46-yard attempt. He made field goals of 25 yards and 35 yards.

Henery is 2 for 5 this season on field goals between 40 and 49 yards. He was 15 for 16 over the last two seasons.

Vick still the QB

Kelly said he has no intention of making a quarterback change and that Michael Vick played well on Sunday. Vick finished 14 of 27 for 248 yards and rushed for 41 yards. He had neither a touchdown nor a turnover.

"I do know this, and we got to get it addressed: We got to protect him better," Kelly said.

Vick said he "would like to have more time," but added that he'll "keep fighting with those guys each and every day."

Vick's message after the game was that the team needed to avoid a hangover from the loss. He said it took the Eagles two days to get over the Chiefs loss last week, and they need to move on more quickly. Kelly spoke to Vick about this last week, telling him that players follow his lead.

"It should burn. It should hurt because that's what it's supposed to do in this profession," Vick said. "But we have to find a way to get our juice back and our enthusiasm back and understand what's ahead of us, and we still control our own destiny."

Lineup decisions

Safety Earl Wolff started his first game on Sunday in place of Patrick Chung, who missed the game with a shoulder injury. Wolff had seven tackles.

Rookie tight end Zach Ertz made his first start because the Eagles started the game in a two-tight end set. Ertz recorded one catch for 38 yards.

Cornerback Roc Carmichael, who was signed last week, made his Eagles debut. He was active in place of Shaun Prater.

Defensive end Vinny Curry was active for the second consecutive week. He had two tackles.

Offensive linemen Dennis Kelly and Matt Tobin, defensive end Damion Square, quarterback Matt Barkley, and tight end Emil Igwenagu were inactive.

Extra points

Both DeSean Jackson and LeSean McCoy left the game to be evaluated for injuries, but both returned. . . . Running back Chris Polk scored a touchdown on his first career carry.


zberman@phillynews.com

@ZBerm.

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