On Sunday night the Eagles did what was expected of the top team in the NFC and defeated a struggling Packers team. Was it easy? Not at all. But they did it with some flare. While many will continue to debate the thought that the Eagles have not beaten a worthy opponent, the fact of the matter is that the birds are winning convincingly whether you like it or not.
Philadelphia has beaten two of the top NFC teams which neither of those teams has done. They’re the only team in the NFC to beat two 8+ win teams this season. They beat down the Vikings 24-7 and followed by beating the Cowboys 26-17. Sure, the Cowboys didn’t have Dak Prescott but wasn’t everyone ready to dub Cooper Rush as their new QB1?
Jalen Hurts is at the heart and soul of this team and they are operating as one due to the leadership in the building but it helps when your QB is playing like a true MVP candidate. Hurts has been cerebral since week 1 and has shown zero signs of slowing down. He’s passed for 2,560 yards and rushed 597 yards. He’s thrown 17 touchdown passes and has only thrown three interceptions.
He’s also been as efficient in the run game when it comes to scoring as the Eagles’ QB has scored 8 touchdowns and is on pace to pass his career high of 10 from last season. Fortunately, he’s not doing it alone. Miles Sanders has also stepped up and has provided efficiency from the running back group.
Sanders has collected 900 rushing yards and has also scored 8 rushing touchdowns. Both in part are career highs for the pending free agent but that’s not even the more impressive stat for Miles this season. Sanders is averaging an impressive 5.1 yards per carry. He’s averaged 5 yards per carry in his last three seasons and has also been able to hold on to the ball this season as he has zero fumbles.
Then there are the receivers. No other receiver in the NFL has had the impact that A.J. Brown has had on the Philadelphia Eagles. What is quite possibly the best trade of the season is the most important move that Philadelphia made this offseason. It has allowed Hurts to grow and it has opened up the field for players like Dallas Goedert, DeVonta Smith, and Quez Watkins.
A.J. Brown has led the team’s WR group with 831 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns. He’s on pace to be the Eagles’ first receiver since Jeremy Maclin to cross the 1,000-yard mark. DeVonta Smith is following close with 609 receiving yards of his own and three touchdowns.
The Eagles’ offense has played an important role in their success but so has their defense. Although they’ve been hard to watch at times, Philly’s defense has been one of the best in the NFL. With the additions of Suh and Joseph and the return of Jordan Davis, they’re only going to get better.
Defensively, they’re the top unit in the NFL when it comes to turnovers. They’re also 9th in points allowed as well. They’ve only allowed three teams to score more than 30 points this season and they have only lost to one of them.
The addition of James Bradberry and C.J. Gardner-Johnson has been huge. CJGJ leads the league in interceptions while Bradberry has been one of the top CB’s in the league.
Then there’s Haason Reddick who has been the weapon that he was expected to be. Reddick currently has 8 sacks this season and three forced fumbles. He’s been wreaking havoc on third and fourth down, just when the team needs him the most. Reddick’s presence has allowed Gannon to be as creative as possible when it comes to the pass rush.
Both units have played phenomenally but have yet to truly play a complete game. Which at 10-1 should be a very tough pill to swallow for the NFL. The Eagles are every bit of a 10-1 regardless of what the naysayers say.
AP Photo/Matt Slocum