Philadelphia Eagles News

Defense Hurt By Big-Play Passing Game



LANDOVER, Md. --It's not a secret that Washington wide receiver DeSean Jackson is an explosive player who as the ability to get deep and make a defense pay in the passing game.

He made the Eagles pay in Saturday's 27-24 Washington win at FedEx Field.

Jackson caught 4 passes for 126 yards and his receptions of 51 yards and 55 yards led to a pair of Washington touchdowns. Bradley Fletcher was in single coverage on Jackson on both plays and simply could not run with Jackson enough to make stops.

Fletcher had little to say after the game before he left the locker room, addressing some reporters briefly. Defensive coordinator Bill Davis discussed the approach to Jackson after the loss. The Eagles stuck with Fletcher until late in the game when Nolan Carroll II replaced Fletcher in the base defense.

"I don't regret anything, no," Davis said. "I make plans based on what I see and make decisions on what I see. I don't regret one minute of it. Like all players, you have to give them a shot to get out of a slump when they're in a slump or you just end up bailing on everybody every time one play goes bad. You can't play ball that way or build confidence that way. I made the switch when I thought it was time to make the switch and unfortunately it didn't work out.

"He got beat for the second time vertically and I wanted to just get him out of there for a second, catch his breath, get his perspective and try Nolan in there. Try someone else."

The Eagles traveled to Washington to face their NFC East rivals in a crucial Week 16 showdown. Making the affair much more special, is that it's Saturday afternoon football ...

Fletcher was in coverage last Sunday night when Cowboys' wide receiver Dez Bryant scored three touchdowns against the Eagles, but the coaches came right back with Fletcher on Saturday against Washington.

"Two weeks in a row, he's had two bad weeks," Davis said. "I was hoping he'd get out of that slump and he didn't. They went at him deep and they made the plays on him so I made a switch.

"I think Fletch is a good corner, he's just lacking confidence right now. They're making some plays on him, he's in a slump, so we gave Nolan a shot out there and let Fletch take a step back."

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