Atlanta Falcons: Five takeaways from win over Eagles

2 of 6

A tale of two halves

Sep 14, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons inside linebacker Paul Worrilow (55) and Justin Durant (52) combine to tackle Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews (81) in the fourth quarter at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons defense didn’t record a sack in the first half, but the team managed five quarterback hits that impacted the game greatly. Rookie defensive tackle Grady Jarrett’s quarterback hit led to a William Moore interception deep inside Eagles’ territory, but he wasn’t the only rookie on the defensive line to impact the game.

Eighth overall pick Vic Beasley remained quite for most of the first half, but finished it off with a bang. On third down and short Beasley batted down a pass attempt from Bradford and nearly recorded his first career sack to end the first half.

Other players to record a QB hit in the first half included O’Brien Schofield, Tyson Jackson and Jonathan Babineaux.

Sep 14, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn reacts on the sideline against the Philadelphia Eagles in the second quarter at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Not only was the pass defense good, the run defense was even better. DeMarco Murray was held to -4 yards rushing while Darren Sproles rushed for a measly 12 yards. The great defense kept Bradford off the field, and Matt Ryan on the field in tune to two first-half touchdown passes to Julio Jones.

The second half defense had a much different look to it. A bad look. The Falcons’ defense was unable to apply pressure to Bradford which led to the fast tempo offense of Philadelphia to shred the Falcons with ease. The Eagles outscored the Falcons 21-3 to take the lead 24-23 with 8:37 remaining in the fourth quarter.

In that span DeMarco Murray scored two touchdowns, one run and one catch while Ryan Matthews powered into the end zone from a yard out to give the Eagles their first lead of the game.

After a quick field goal from the Falcons to regain the lead, 26-24 the Falcons defense was back to getting shredded. The Eagles marched down the field but a great stop from Worrilow forced a 4th-and-1. The Eagles elected to kick the go-ahead field goal, but not so fast. Cody Parkey missed wide right.

The Eagles’ offense had one more opportunity to win the game, but a dropped pass from Jordan Matthews resulted in an interception from second year safety Ricardo Allen to seal the game for Atlanta.

It was a tale of two half’s, but the Falcons did just enough to knock off a tough Eagles team 26-24.