PHILADELPHIA — To begin: The Philadelphia Eagles were unable to avoid the first round of booing from their fans to start the 2023 season, even on a night when they had complete control of the game they were playing at home. It is quite unlikely that they will be the final ones. But since Jalen Hurts and company converted Philadelphia back into a winning machine, there hasn’t been much reason for criticism in the City of Brotherly Love. This has been the case ever since.
The Eagles’ offense appeared slow at times during the first “Thursday Night Football” game of the season, which they won by a score of 34-28 against the Minnesota Vikings. This performance was similar to the one they turned in the previous week in their game against the New England Patriots, which they won by a score of 25-20. Despite this, the Vikings did not have an answer for the defensive front of the Eagles because Minnesota’s starting center Garrett Bradbury (lower back) and left tackle Christian Darrisaw (ankle) were both unable to play due to injury on the short week.
D’Andre Swift, a native of Philadelphia who was making his home debut, led the offense on the ground by rushing for a career-high 175 yards with 28 carries. Swift had three carries of the ball and one reception in the previous week.
The offensive line was in charge of driving the ball down the field during a drive that lasted 7 minutes and 55 seconds in the second quarter. The drive consisted of 13 run plays as opposed to three pass plays. Jalen Hurts, the team’s quarterback, used a play called the “Philly Push” to score two touchdowns by running the ball near the goal line. And receiver DeVonta Smith wriggled loose and showcased his ability to make catches on his way to recording four receptions for 143 yards, including a touchdown reception of 63 yards.
Hurts completed 18 of 23 passes for 193 yards and had one interception throughout the game. Additionally, he ran the ball 12 times for a total of 35 yards. The most recent NFL scores, schedules, odds, data, and more can be found here at NFL Data Center.
The fact that the Vikings turned the ball over four times demonstrates that they did not make things simple for themselves. Brandon Powell, a punt returner, lost control of the ball on his first return of the game in the first quarter, which resulted in a field position that may have been considered ideal. Wide receiver Justin Jefferson had another great stat line (11 receptions, 159 yards), but he also made the mistake of the game when he fumbled the ball while trying to advance it over the goal line after a spectacular completion. As a result of a review of the replay, it was found that the ball had flown over the deadline; as a result, the touchback rule was applied, which radically changed the momentum before halftime. Jake Elliott kicked a field goal from 61 yards out with 34 seconds left before halftime, which brought the score to 13-7 and tied a career-high for him.
Running back Alexander Mattison and quarterback Kirk Cousins each lost possession of the ball, with Cousins’ fumble occurring as a result of a strip sack by Josh Sweat, which allowed the Eagles to take over inside the Vikings’ 10-yard line and give them great field position.
Even though they led by 20 points at one point, the Eagles weren’t able to blow away the Vikings as they did in Week 2 of the 2017 season, which was also a “Monday Night Football” game. With 7:41 left on the clock, Kirk Cousins completed a pass to an open K.J. Osborn in the back corner of the end zone to bring the game within a possession of being tied. After that, Cousins connected with youngster Jordan Addison for a touchdown pass of 62 yards, which was an answer to Smith’s long touchdown.
In the fourth quarter of the game, the Eagles went on a drive that lasted around nine minutes, consisted of fifteen plays, covered 44 yards, and did not result in any points.
During the Eagles’ subsequent drive, Swift made a break through the line for a gain of 43 yards, bringing the team closer to the end zone by just four yards. In an only fitting move, Swift punched it in for his first touchdown with the Eagles, giving Philadelphia a lead of 34-21.
When Vikings tight end T.J. Hockenson, who finished the game with seven receptions for 66 yards, scored his second touchdown of the game on a short pass with 70 seconds left on the clock, the lead stayed unchanged at six points.