The Philadelphia Eagles finally have an opponent to prepare for as the Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs kicks off on Saturday. With the Eagles and Giants set to face off for a third time this season, questions have begun to be asked about Philly’s ability to beat a team three times in a season.
The Giants are coming off an impressive 31-24 victory over the Minnesota Vikings last week. Most impressive about it was that Daniel Jones performed like a top quarterback in the league. Jones totaled close to 400 yards of offense for the G-Men and had New York at 7-13 on third down. Their efficiency was off the charts and a major reason for the win.
Philadelphia comes into the divisional round at 14-3 with franchise records in almost every key category. But with two weeks of rest and playing uninspired football in the last month, it’s not that hard to find a reason why Philadelphia could be upset at home on Saturday.
Let’s take a look at the Eagles’ familiar opponent next week.
New York Giants (9-7-1)
Last Game: 31-24 win over the Minnesota Vikings
Offensive Ranking: 18th
Defensive Ranking: 25th
Head-to-Head Matchup: Philadelphia leads the all-time series 91-87-2
New York Giants Coaching Staff
Head Coach: Brian Daboll
Offensive Coordinator: Mike Kafka
Defensive Coordinator: Wink Martindale
Special Teams Coordinator: Thomas McGaughey
Daniel Jones’ performance on Wild Card weekend was surprising and inspiring. The way he was able to move the pocket and deliver the football accurately will make any team facing him nervous. Probably the toughest part for the Eagles is that Saquon Barkley did not get many touches in Sunday’s win.
That means Philadelphia should expect a heavy workload for the former second-overall pick. Minnesota’s defense may be bad, but the Giants’ offense is clicking at just the right time. This won’t be easy for Jonathan Gannon and the defense.
Last week’s win over Minnesota was an aberration in more ways than one for the Giants’ defense. First, they blitzed the lowest amount they have all year and promptly got shredded. Second, the team did a great job on Justin Jefferson but struggled against TJ Hockenson.
The Eagles’ 22-17 win over the Giants at the end of the season showed how Wink Martindale is prepared to throw different disguises at Jalen Hurts and it worked. I would expect the Giants to do that exact plan again in Philadelphia this week.
X-Factor: Saquon Barkley
Barkley only had 14 touches in the win on Sunday. That should terrify most teams in the playoffs that the Giants didn’t need to use their best player to pull off a win. Barkley has had a solid history against the Eagles and could be a major factor against them on Sunday. New York’s offensive line isn’t as great as Philly’s but they have the capabilities of dealing a major blow to the Eagles’ playoff success.
AP Photo/Matt Slocum