The Eagles are sitting pretty at 4-4 and will venture into the Bye after this week. Before a chance to catch their breath, they have to face the 3-4 Chicago Bears. Can the Eagles sail into the Bye with a full head of steam? Here are five bold predictions ahead of the matchup.
Record so far: 12-40
The Eagles were unusually quiet at the trade deadline, but they did make one move in trading for former Browns DE Genard Avery. After breaking down tape from his rookie year, I’m confident that the former sixth-round pick can play a huge role as the season winds down as a sub-package DE.
That begins on Sunday against a Bears offensive line that has allowed 2.7 sacks per game on their franchise quarterback, who is already struggling to find the same form he did in 2018. With the Eagles lacking in interior pass-rush depth, my first bold prediction is that Genard Avery will muster a sack in his Eagles debut.
The Jordan Howard revenge game
I wrote about this earlier in the week, but it should be a real spectacle. Jordan Howard was cast out of the Chicago offense and eventually out of the team altogether, who wanted to draft Jordan Howard 2.0 and keep those cheap contract years rolling. Howard found his way to Philadelphia where he’s now averaging his highest YPC since 2017 and is on course for a career year. Oh, and the team who pushed him out in the cold are coming to town.
A big game would come as no shock here, given that Howard has been instrumental in the team’s biggest wins so far. A 96-yard outing against Buffalo and a hat-trick of touchdowns against the Packers contributed to the Jordan Howard revenge tour, but now it reaches its headline spot.
I’m predicting Howard to amass his first 100-yard game as an Eagle, becoming the first Eagles running back to record 100+ yards rushing in 36 consecutive games.
The former Tar-heel has been…’Tarrible’ this season. Sorry. But seriously, 5 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, and an average yards per attempt of a measly 5.6. I don’t think this is shocking, however. Trubisky has always been volatile and was a massive beneficiary of a scheme that defenses are now catching up to and containing. He probably misses Jordan Howard a little, too.
Given how inconsistent Trubisky has been and how rampant the Eagles pass-rush is becoming, this should have ‘nightmare’ written all over it. Providing that this is the case and Schwartz is constantly able to force Trubisky into scenarios where he has to use his intuition, the Eagles should be able to contain him with relative ease.
I predict Trubisky will be held to under 200 passing yards, 0 TD and 1+ INT.
Andre Dillard will face his toughest challenge as an NFL offensive lineman so far in containing Khalil Mack. Well, it’s the hardest task for any offensive lineman, let alone a rookie with two starts under his belt.
But the Eagles have been smart in giving their younger tackles help. Running backs and Tight Ends ‘chip’ before commencing their routes and just look at how the Eagles schemed for Vaitai to have some extra push against Everson Griffen in the 2017 NFC Championship game.
I predict that while Mack will be a constant problem, but Dillard will punch in the performance of a lifetime and hold him to just 1 sack and 2 QB hits…which is a very good day at the office.
Darby has his day
Allen Robinson is no slouch and he leads the Bears in receiving with 526 yards and 3 touchdowns. Ronald Darby looked mildly impressive against the Bills, although had Josh Allen not underthrown a pass, his heroic PBU would’ve probably ended in a touchdown.
Anyway, his confidence is going to be high and with a game under his belt after injury, he’s in the best position possible to break out in a way that may finally give fans a reason to feel confident.
I’m going to end this article by (and it’s hard for me to type so bear with me)…predicting an interception for Ronald Darby.
Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports