With a 30-17 win over the Washington Redskins on the road Sunday, head coach Doug Pederson is pleased with the way the Philadelphia Eagles were able to step up and get the regular season started on a high note.
Despite it not being a perfect game, Pederson feels the Eagles were resilient and pushed through the adversity that came their way in Washington today.
Two early touchdowns gave the Eagles a 13-point lead in the second quarter, however, it wasn't enough as the Redskins found the end zone twice in the second quarter to briefly take the lead.
Pederson was impressed with the way his team took that setback and used it to power through the second half of the game, as the Eagles outscored the division rivals 14-3.
"It says a lot about the leadership and the way the guys hang in there. I mean this team really believes in themselves and we all feel like we can be a good football team. You know we got to eliminate some stuff. I mean there are some crazy things that we just got to eliminate like penalties and turnovers and things like that," Pederson said. "At the same time that locker room believes in one another and they rally around each other. When guys like Ronald Darby go down or Jason Peters steps out, guys step up and play and that's what you got to have in these games."
Referring to cornerback Ronald Darby going down with an ankle injury in the second quarter, Pederson was pleased with the way fellow teammates Jaylen Watkins and Jalen Mills were able to step up and fill in the gap.
"Those corners are on an island quite a bit and I thought both Jaylen when he came in and then Jalen Mills ... what a big play when we needed it," Pederson said referring to Mills' first career interception at the goal line to thwart a potential scoring drive. "The couple drives the Redskins had our defense on the field a long time and to come up with that turnover at that time was huge and I thought they stepped in and did a nice job."
A touchdown from defensive tackle Fletcher Cox late in the fourth quarter not only secured the win for the Eagles, but also further showed that the Eagles' defense came to impress.
"I'm very proud of the way those guys battled and hung in there," Pederson said. "It wasn't a perfect game but they played for 60 minutes and in these games like this you have to do that and hats off to those guys on defense. They battled. They hung in there and kept our offense in good situations when we took the field, so it was a great job by our defense."
Offensively, Pederson feels there are some areas that need to be looked at and improved upon as the regular season continues.
"We made some plays, a lot of them were broken plays. We've got to obviously look at the film and make the corrections. It wasn't perfect," Pederson said. "Too many breakdowns in some crucial situations and some drive killers, whether it be a penalty or a sack. Those are things we got to take a look at. But all in all, we had some opportunities down the field which is exciting and those are things moving forward we'll address and try to fix."
Despite some of the things that need to be worked on, Pederson certainly isn't denying the significance of starting the season off with a win, particularly on the road.
"We've been talking all week about kind of getting the monkey off our back down here and really against the Redskins and particularly on the road where we haven't done so well, particularly last year," Pederson said. "This is a good football team, it's a tough place, the crowd is into it, and I think losing five times to these guys kind of got the monkey off our back so to speak."
The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Washington Redskins, 30-17, at FedEx Field in their season opener. Check out photos from the victory.