PHILADELPHIA -- As the Christmas music was playing in the Philadelphia Eagles locker room, the feeling was far from joyous. Understandably on Christmas, players wanted to bolt and see their families. For the ones who stuck around, it was a mixed bag of somber and relief. 

The Eagles won a football game for the first time since Nov. 26, beating the Giants 33-25. This is a football team that snapped a three-game losing streak, yet is 11-4 and tied for the best record in the NFC. The Eagles lead the NFC East by a game and are a win and Dallas Cowboys loss away from wrapping up a division title.

So why the grave tone? The Eagles won, but were far from perfect. Here are some ugly examples:

  • Olamide Zaccheaus and Boston Scott ran into each other on a kickoff return that led to a fumble.
  • Dallas Goedert slipped, which led to an interception returned for a touchdown.
  • Jalen Hurts didn't run out of bounds near the end of the first half.
  • Nick Sirianni let 20 seconds run off the clock at the end of the same half before calling a timeout.
  • Jalen Carter jogged off the field, which led to an offsides penalty on fourth down, giving the outmatched New York Giants a first down and extending what once was a dormant drive. 

Those were just the on-field shenanigans. 

"We're not playing good football right now," said wide receiver DeVonta Smith. "I'm not satisfied. Yeah, we got 11 wins. I'm not happy. It (the offense) needs to be better for what I want to do, what everybody else in here wants to do, what we want to be.

"We're nowhere near that so, no, I'm not happy."

Off the field, cameras from the television broadcast caught Sirianni in a heated exchange with defensive ends/outside linebackers coach Jeremiah Washburn after Sirianni was seen shouting at Haason Reddick. Smith intervened with Sirianni having a few words for him as well.

"I get animated a lot," Sirianni said. "There are things that when mistakes are happening or trying to get the communication going, just a little bit of that. That happens throughout a game. It's going to be between players and players, coaches and players, coaches and coaches. But when you have the relationships that we have and the connections that we have, we're able to move on quickly."

Perhaps the Eagles are feeling the immense pressure of trying to win a Super Bowl, one year after falling short by three points in the big game. Even at 11-4, Philadelphia has a point differential of +26 -- the fifth-worst in NFL history for any team with 11+ wins. None of the other four teams with a worse point differential at 11-4 made the Super Bowl.

The frustration is mounting regardless of the result. A.J. Brown, who always has time to speak on and off the record, declined to talk to reporters after the game. Hurts had a long chat with Smith before the receiver talked to reporters, then Hurts and Jason Kelce chatted for a long time by his locker. The discussion was long enough that Eagles security had to put a blockade between the two so no one could decipher what they were saying. 

The mild-mannered Hurts and realist Kelce appeared to have a positive discussion, even though they know the Eagles need more than a "get right" game. 

"Sloppy game, this very evident," Kelce said. "That's stuff that we shouldn't be doing. What are we 15 in right now? That's embarrassing to have too many guys on the field. I had a bad snap, that's unacceptable. I think, um, it was a sloppy game all around.

"I think we played really well at times, especially offensively. We moved the ball really well. A lot of really, really good things, but obviously the mistakes, the gross errors, the penalties kept them in the ball game longer than probably what should have been the case." 

Hurts already talks about playing up to the standard. That standard takes a step back to winning, which as Hurts puts it -- keeping the main thing the main thing.

"I would love to say we are close. I love to say we are close, and I think it is trending in the right direction," Hurts said. "I think it's trending in the right direction. We demand such excellence of ourselves. When you have the type of guys we have on our team, everybody is going to be eager to grow, everybody is going to be eager for more. But when did winning not become the main thing?

"Through the standard we've been talking about. It's like a double-edged sword of what's more important, winning or the standard? It's a very manipulative thing to the mind sometimes. I can play to the standards and lose and be sick, I can go win and not play to the standard and be like, 'We have more work to do.' It's that fight we balance as competitors." 

That fight is the internal battle with this Eagles team. They are winning, but the wins aren't pretty nor are they dominant. At the end of the day, this Eagles team is 11-4 and two wins -- along with a San Francisco 49ers and Detroit Lions loss -- away from home-field advantage in the NFC. 

Everything the Eagles are striving for is still right in front of them, regardless of the way they are conducting business. 

"Being the leader, you have to not only be able to lead by example, but you have to be able to lead by action," Hurts said. "The No. 1 thing is I'll never ask somebody to do something I'm not willing to do. So, it's just about us finding out what that is in terms of our togetherness and just staying together through everything. Just growing. 

"This is a great opportunity for us to grow on."