ESPN's Troy Aikman and Joe Buck were praised for their sharp criticism of the Eagles during Monday's playoff loss to the Buccaneers. Photo Credit: ESPN. Troy Aikman and Joe Buck talk about the Eagles playoff loss to the Buccaneers. Photo Credit: ESPN.

Any hopes that the Philadelphia Eagles and their fans had of flipping a switch in the playoffs to shake off what was a dismal end to the regular season were dashed on Monday night. The Eagles were soundly defeated by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, losing 32-9.

ESPN’s Joe Buck and especially Troy Aikman provided a soundtrack to Monday’s game. Neither held back much when it came to breaking down Philadelphia’s performance.

It started early. Already leading 3-0, Tampa’s David Moore scored the first touchdown of the game in the first quarter with a 44-yard reception. Most of the yards on that play came after the catch. Following the touchdown, Buck ripped the tackling efforts of the Eagles, saying “So far the tackling for the Eagles in their secondary has been awful.”

It continued.

Tampa receiver Chris Godwin caught a short pass on a second-and-10. While seemed like he didn’t have a lot of room to run, he still managed to gain nine yards. Buck again drew attention to the poor tackling, saying “Sorry to keep saying the same thing. But I keep seeing the same thing.”

The poor tackling was again on display in the third quarter. Tampa’s Trey Palmer caught a pass, broke one tackle and essentially ran through two more Philadelphia defenders for a 56-yard touchdown to put the Bucs up 25-9.

In his analysis of the play, Troy Aikman began to criticize Philadelphia cornerback James Bradberry and safety Kevin Byard for their missed tackles before turning his attention to the rest of the team.

“James Bradberry on the outside at corner and just unable to make a tackle. But even the back end — Kevin Byard — “I don’t know what that is but we’ve seen enough of it all year long.”

“It just continues throughout this ballgame, on both sides of the ball, to just show the problems that Philadelphia has had and why they had the collapse that they had to end this season.”

A shot of a frustrated Jalen Hurts and Dallas Goedert on the Philadelphia sideline was shown later in the game. Aikman again spotlighted how consistent it was with the team’s final regular-season games.

“We’ve been watching that for six or seven weeks. It’s been continuous. It’s a defeated them, and they were when they came in.

The sharp commentary continued after the game, with Aikman and Buck talking to Scott Van Pelt on SportsCenter.

In situations like this, announcers run the risk of beating a dead horse. And while some viewers no doubt felt that Aikman and Buck’s criticism was excessive, most of them didn’t. They were generally praised for their tough, but fair, commentary.

[Photo Credit: ESPN]

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