DETROIT – The Eagles had been waiting all season for this.
They put together a strong running game with an attacking defense in beating the Detroit Lions 44-6 on Sunday.
The Lions remain the NFL’s only winless team, dropping to 0-8. The Eagles (3-5) lost five of six previous games, and were trailing by double digits in six of them.
That was never an issue Sunday.
The Eagles ran for 237 yards, easily eclipsing their previous season-high of 173 yards set in the opening day win over Atlanta. By the end of the third quarter, the Eagles had already surpassed this total. This was without Miles Sanders, their leading running back, who was injured last week and was placed on injured reserve.
Instead, they got a balanced running attack from quarterback Jalen Hurts (71 yards); Boston Scott (60 yards), who didn’t have a carry all season until last week against the Raiders, when Sanders got hurt; and veteran Jordan Howard (57 yards), who had been on the practice squad all season until getting promoted Saturday.
Scott and Howard each scored two touchdowns.
Hurts only attempted 14 passes, completing nine, for 103 yards. In the fourth quarter, he was replaced by Gardner Minshew who made his Eagles debut.
But the Eagles also did it behind an attacking defense that sacked Lions quarterback Jared Goff five times. Josh Sweat had 1.5 sacks in seven of the previous games and had two on Sunday.
Even Darius Slay got into the act, returning a fumble 33 yards for a touchdown with 1: 09 left in the third quarter, giving the Eagles a 38-0 lead. It was the Eagles’ largest margin of victory since a 54-11 win over the Chicago Bears on Dec. 22, 2013.
Contact Martin Frank at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @Mfranknfl.