The Eagles will look to keep the momentum rolling from their win in Green Bay as they take on the 0-3 Jets, who are coming off an early bye week.
After Doug Pederson last week called what was arguably his best game since the Super Bowl, what can we expect from the Eagles offensive unit going against the Jets defense?
Let’s look at the units as a whole and identify key matchups.
Units by the numbers
Looking at the raw numbers, both teams are getting-, and allowing about the same amount of total yardage, skewed towards giving up a lot of passing yards for Jets defense, while Eagles run for slightly more yards than league average.
|16.9 % (4th)
|– 5.8 % (12th)
An interesting key statistic here is the Opponent-adjusted Value Over Average, which is a number based on a breakdown of every single play, which is then compared to a league baseline average. As we can see, the Eagles offense ranks among the best in the league, while the Jets defense sits respectably above average.
Another key stat is points/game. The Eagles rank in the top 7 despite a ton of offensive injuries, which is very impressive when you take everything else into account.
Looking at PFF’s ranking of the units, the Eagles are one of the best passing units in the league, mainly because Wentz is playing terrific football. Meanwhile, the running game got going against the Packers, flashing the production that’s been otherwise missing from this team through the opening four games.
The Jets defense ranks highly in coverage primarily due to the play of Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye, however, cornerbacks Trumaine Johnson, Nate Hairston, and Darryl Roberts have not been playing well this year. This has created a discrepancy between PFF grade and defensive ranking in terms of passing yards given up.
Injuries spark mismatches
The Jets run defense took a huge hit during the week when starting LB Jordan Jenkins was ruled out. Fellow starting LB C.J. Mosley is not expected to play, as he hasn’t been practicing at all the whole week.
For the Eagles offense, DeSean Jackson remains out, but for once there are no other injuries worth mentioning.
The first thing that stands out is the Eagles offensive line, who as a group are coming off of a dominant performance against the Packers. The Jets defensive front will have a rough day at the office filling the gaps of an Eagles unit that moves well in space, and has the addition of one of the NFL’s best-run blockers in Dallas Goedert.
Neville Hewitt, who has started 14 games in a 5-year career, and 5th round rookie Blake Cashman out of Minnesota are a weak spot for a run game that does a great job of transitioning to the second level on run plays.
The Eagles do have a weak link at LG in Isaac Seumalo that presents the easiest spot for Jets to attack.
Finally, Wentz has been playing tremendous football lately, and CB’s Hairston, and Roberts are favorable matchups for Eagles to target. Having Alshon Jeffery back should help the Eagles create matchups they like.
A tough challenge for Jets defense
Conclusively, Jets will be coming into this game missing two key pieces to their success against the run, while their poorly executing CB’s will be going up against a top passing team.
For a team that will likely have to rely on their defense to overperform to stay in the game, the matchup doesn’t seem encouraging.
For the Eagles, they have the ability to choose openly from a run game that dominated last week going up against a banged-up front 7, or continue their top-of-the-league passing attack with Goedert and Alshon back in the lineup again.
Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports