PHILADELPHIA — The Eagles escaped Carolina with a victory Thursday, so the historic disparity in penalty yards wasn’t the all-consuming topic of conversation in the locker room afterward. But Philadelphia’s players and coaches took notice, and there will be some clips sent to the NFL offices this weekend for review.
The Eagles were penalized 10 times for 126 yards in their 28-23 victory, compared to one penalty for 1 yard for the Panthers. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Thursday night’s game was the first in NFL history in which one team had at least 120 penalty yards and their opponent had fewer than 10 penalty yards.
“We felt like a lot of those were ticky-tack, or weren’t good calls,” said Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins. “Adversity is nothing new for us. We just kind of strap up and hunker down.”
The largest disparity in penalty yards in single games in the last 15 NFL seasons.
GAME TEAM OPPONENT DISPARITY
2015 Week 10 Browns (188) Steelers (50) 138 yards
2015 Week 8 Raiders (200) Buccaneers (64) 136 yards
2017 Week 6 Eagles (126) Panthers (1) 125 yards
ESPN Stats & Information
A few calls led to some clear in-game frustration for Eagles players and coaches. One was a pass interference on cornerback Jalen Mills on a Cam Newton deep ball intended for Curtis Samuel in the third quarter that was intercepted by safety Rodney McLeod. While Mills did seem to make light contact before the ball came down, it didn’t appear Samuel was in position to make a play on it. Mills was whistled for interference earlier in the game as well, on a bang-bang play. Rookie defensive end Derek Barnett was flagged for unnecessary roughness in the fourth quarter to extend a drive. The play was blown dead for delay of game, but the Eagles’ defensive front didn’t hear the whistle and Barnett knocked Newton to the ground.
Eagles coach Doug Pederson walks off the field after Thursday’s win over the Panthers. Jeremy Brevard/USA TODAY Sports
Eagles coach Doug Pederson indicated they would be sending some of the plays to the league office, as is their custom.
“Every week our protocol is to go through and watch the game — [director of football compliance] Jon Ferrari helps out there — and we look at the game and whether it was a call against us or maybe a call that wasn’t made that maybe we felt should have been made, we send those in, we send those clips into the league office. Every team does this,” Pederson said. “Just want to get clarification. That’s all we’re trying to do, just trying to see whether the penalty should have happened or shouldn’t have happened. That’s just protocol and we’ll do that over the weekend.”
This is not the first time the Eagles have been on the wrong end of a lopsided penalty advantage with Pete Morelli’s crew officiating. During Pederson’s day-after news conference, it was pointed out to Pederson that the penalty disparity has been 40-8 in favor of the opposition in the past four games officiated by Morelli’s group.
“Well, I think the league is aware of it,” Pederson said. “I’m not going to get into all that. We have to do a better job. We have to coach it and we can’t be getting these flags. And listen, a lot of them were legit. I’m not saying they weren’t. A lot of the flags last night were legit calls, so we’ve got to do a better job there. For whatever reason, it is what it is, but moving forward we can’t worry about it. Bottom line, we won the game. We figured out how to do that, and that’s the bottom line.”