England mid-term report: Owen Farrell and Willi Heinz need to improve, while Ellis Genge is top of the class with two explosive cameos bringing aggression from the bench
- England have lost one and won one from their opening two Six Nations games
- Eddie Jones’ men were soundly beaten by the French in their opening game
- However, they got off the mark with a 13-6 win over Scotland on Saturday
- But how has each player performed? Sportsmail grades the England squad
England endured a rocky start to their Six Nations campaign having succumbed to defeat in their opening game against France.
However, Eddie Jones’ men got back on track with a 13-6 win over Scotland to lift the Calcutta Cup on Saturday.
But how is each member of Jones’ squad getting on? Here, Sportsmail’s Nik Simon grades each player as the Six Nations rumbles on.
Lewis Ludlam (L), Sam Underhill and Tom Curry (R) smile after winning the Calcutta Cup
Earmarked as England’s strongest scrummager. Solid at the set-piece against France, never going backwards.
MINS 52 TACKLES 7 CARRIES 7 METRES MADE 23 PENS CONCEDED 0
Mako Vunipola: B-
Dropped for Paris and was given few opportunities to get over gain line in atrocious Scottish weather.
MINS 57 TACKLES 14 CARRIES 5 METRES MADE 20 PENS CONCEDED 1
Ellis Genge: A
Two explosive cameos off the ‘bomb squad’ bench — bringing second-half energy and aggression.
MINS 52 TRIES 1 TACKLES 3 CARRIES 6 METRES MADE 23 PENS CONCEDED 0
Ellis Genge is top of the class following his two explosive cameos from the bench
Kyle Sinckler: C
Blockbuster carries were more obvious in Scotland after standing starts against France’s Shaun Edwards defence.
MINS 153 METRES 47 CARRIES 14 TACKLES 22 PENS CONCEDED 0
Jamie George: B-
Lineout struggled in week one but he made amends in difficult throwing conditions in week two.
MINS 129 TACKLES 23 CARRIES 10 METRES MADE 35 PENS CONCEDED 0
Luke Cowan-Dickie: B
Powerful and niggly bench option — close to starting in Scotland before partner went into labour.
MINS 31 TACKLES 5 CARRIES 4 METRES MADE 23 PENS CONCEDED 1
Maro Itoje: B-
Uncharacteristic errors in Paris but made key defensive interventions to thwart Scotland.
MINS 160 TACKLES 36 CARRIES 13 METRES 35 TURNOVERS 2 PENS CONCEDED 3
Charlie Ewels: D
Fall guy for opening-round defeat after making a catalogue of errors.
MINS 56 TACKLES 5 CARRIES 6 METRES 21 TURNOVERS 1 PENS CONCEDED 1
Courtney Lawes: B-
Cameo in No 6 jersey did not pay off. Has plenty of explosive presence to offer as a second row.
MINS 95 TACKLES 17 CARRIES 5 METRES 30 TURNOVERS 2 PENS CONCEDED 0
Maro Itoje (left) made uncharacteristic errors in Paris but redeemed himself against Scotland
George Kruis: B-
Brings composure to lineout but does not offer same physical dynamism as other contenders for position.
MINS 83 TACKLES 11 CARRIES 13 METRES 36 TURNOVERS 1 PENS CONCEDED 0
Sam Underhill: A-
Has made most dominant tackles in the tournament as he continues to grow as a defensive force.
MINS 146 TACKLES 24 CARRIES 11 METRES 59 TURNOVERS 1 PENS CONCEDED 1
Tom Curry: B
Flashes of his threat at breakdown but struggled to adapt to intricacies of No 8 role.
MINS 160 TACKLES 23 CARRIES 24 METRES 116 TURNOVERS 2 PENS CONCEDED 1
Lewis Ludlam: B
Made as many headlines for his comments in the press but brought high energy to back row.
MINS 78 TACKLES 14 CARRIES 4 METRES 24 TURNOVERS 1 PENS CONCEDED 1
Ben Earl: B
Yet to be given a chance in No 8 jersey but made strong carry in his one cameo off bench.
MINS 15 TACKLES 1 CARRIES 2 METRES 17 TURNOVERS 0 PENS CONCEDED 0
Ben Youngs: C
Shown up by young Antoine Dupont in Paris but responded with composed display in Scotland.
MINS 84 METRES 9 CARRIES 3 PASSES 84 METRES KICKED 436
Willi Heinz: D
Wayward kicking in the wind and England need a younger option than the 33-year-old.
MINS 77 METRES 32 CARRIES 8 PASSES 56 METRES KICKED 330
Willi Heinz had some wayward kicking in the wind which luckily didn’t cost England in the end
George Ford: B-
Struggled to impose his game in Paris but managed Edinburgh conditions better than opposite man on Saturday.
MINS 155 METRES 51 CARRIES 7 PASSES 35 METRES KICKED 1026
Owen Farrell: C
Dropped balls in round one and missed three penalties in round two — a stuttering start.
MINS 160 METRES 46 CARRIES 10 PASSES 12 METRES KICKED 275 POINTS 15
Manu Tuilagi: B+
Only lasted 16 minutes before injury in Paris.
MINS 16 METRES 17 CARRIES 2 TACKLES 4
Jonathan Joseph: C-
Clattered in Paris and made just six metres in attack against Scotland to leave 13 jersey up for grabs in Tuilagi’s absence.
MINS 144 METRES 48 CARRIES 11 TACKLES 8
Owen Farrell has endured a stuttering start having missed three penalties on Saturday
Elliot Daly: C
Guilty of overcooked kicks on Saturday and still figuring out his strongest position in an England shirt.
MINS 160 METRES 49 CARRIES 6 METRES KICKED 76
Jonny May: A
Showed off his world-class finishing with two solo tries in Paris and chased high balls effectively in the strong winds.
MINS 160 TRIES 2 METRES 100 CARRIES 18
George Furbank: C
Yet to show the confident attacking game he plays at Northampton and caught short with handling errors.
MINS 160 METRES 41 CARRIES 6 TACKLES 6 METRES KICKED 257
ALSO PLAYED: Will Stuart (7 mins); Ollie Devoto (4 mins); Joe Launchbury (9 mins).
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