Eagles vs. Colts score, takeaway: Rookie QB Anthony Richardson leads two TD drives in preseason finals

PHILADELPHIA — Ending the pre-season with little to no excitement, the Indianapolis Colts entertained by letting Anthony Richardson and the team’s first offense play the entire first half. Richardson led the Colts to points on three of his six possessions—including two touchdowns—as Indianapolis defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 27-13 to cap off the pre-season.

Richardson finished the first half with 6 of 17 for 78 yards and no touchdowns or interceptions, yet showed his athleticism on multiple plays buying overtime and opening up his receivers. He did have a fumble, but it was recovered by the Colts.

Indianapolis scored both of its first-half touchdowns on the run, with Deon Jackson and Evan Hull each scoring (Jackson from three yards and Hull from one). Richardson actually led the Colts with 38 yards on five carries.

The Eagles got a touchdown from Trey Sermon (also from an outfield yard), along with field goals of 59 and 52 yards from Jake Elliott (who has three 50-yard kicks this preseason). Marcus Mariota played the opening series before giving way to Tanner McKee, who went 15 of 27 for 139 yards—the most snaps against a first-team Colts defense. Joseph Ngata had a difficult first-half performance as he fell and stumbled resulting in a spin.

Gardner Minshew relieved Richardson in the second half and threw a touchdown pass to Kenyan Drake for the only touchdown in the last 30 minutes. The Eagles didn’t move the ball much in the second half, but Terrick Maddox Williams (who signed last week) caught an interception from 42 yards out.

The following are excerpts from the pre-season finals.

Richardson displays the skill set

Facing some players who will not be on the Eagles’ 53-man squad next week makes it difficult to assess Richardson’s performance. He had three scores in six series, which led to 17 points in the first half. He showed leadership in the vanilla attack that Shin Steichen was running, and he didn’t divulge many secrets. Richardson also knew when to use his legs to move the chains, and rushed for 38 yards on five carries.

The overall numbers aren’t amazing, but it’s clear Richardson has the raw tools and arm strength to succeed in this league. He needs to work on his accuracy and his footwork.

Devon Allen makes his case for a spot on the Eagles’ roster

If anyone has improved their stock to make the 53-man roster for the preseason finals, it’s Allen. He started the game by getting a kickoff returner and taking the opening kickoff 73 yards – leading to an Eagles touchdown. Later in the match, he made a tackle on the penalty kick.

Playing as a returner and gunner on special teams is vital, and Allen has proven he can do just that. As a reminder, he is also bound by a three-year contract. The Eagles did not let go of Allen, who proved his worth.

Gardner impresses Minshew with his limited work

Minshew continued to do Minshew’s stuff as he entered the game to start the second half. He finished 9 of 11 for 102 yards and a touchdown pass to Kenny Drake (Drake wide open) to put the Colts ahead 24-13 on the opening possession of the third quarter. Minshew picked Eagles rookie Kelee Ringo several times on that possession to move the chains, offering his veteran experience against a rookie who needs major work before contributing to NFL Sundays.

Minshew is not a QB1, but he will be a valuable backup to Richardson.

Dion Cain set some tape

Cain probably won’t make the 53-man roster, but the USFL’s MVP has gotten a bit of a breakaway in a number of ways. Cain finished with six catches for 62 yards to lead the Eagles, with several powerful catches to get the series moving. He has the trust of Tanner McKee and must find his way into the training squad – which wasn’t possible at the start of camp (injury).

Tyreek Maddox-Williams is being noticed

For a player who signed with Philadelphia last week as a roster filler for the final preseason game, Maddox Williams finished with seven tackles and caught a 42-yard interception in limited action. He may not be on the Eagles’ 53-man roster, but there is a place in the practice squad that he himself has played in contention for. If it weren’t for Philadelphia, some other NFL teams would be wowed by his performance.

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