Know Your Enemy: Do the Eagles have an advantage over the Commanders in week 4?

Bears vs. Commanders
Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell, left, and wide receiver Dyami Brown celebrate after connecting for a touchdown during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Baltimore Ravens, Monday, Aug. 21, 2023, in Landover, Md. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

The Philadelphia Eagles are 3-0 and look to make it 4-0 on Sunday as they face their divisional rival, the Washington Commanders. The Commanders are 2-1 but looked like a deer lost in the headlights against the Buffalo Bills last Sunday. While divisional matchups are always the toughest games, the Eagles may have a clear advantage.

Let’s take a look at the matchup at hand for the Eagles, Who are the 2023 Washington Commanders?

Commanders Coaching Staff

Head Coach: Ron Rivera

Offensive Coordinator: Eric Bieniemy

Defensive Coordinator(s): Jack Del Rio

The Eagles have an 83-88-6 all-time regular season record against the Commanders and have won 3 of their last 5 regular-season matchups against Washington.

Commanders Offense

Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell passes against the Denver Broncos in the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

The Commanders’ offense will have their work cut out for them against this rebuilt Eagles’ defense. Sam Howell is completing 65% of his passes which is pretty impressive but he has thrown 5 interceptions on the season with four of them coming from their loss to the Bills. Granted, he is technically a rookie and he found a way to make it work in their first two wins. He’s also been sacked 19 times this season which is not a good thing when you are about to face the best defensive line in the league.

Commanders Defense

Eagles commanders nfc east odds
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeVonta Smith (6) makes a catch against Washington Commanders cornerback Kendall Fuller (29) and safety Bobby McCain (20) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022, in Landover, Md. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The Commanders defense has one of the more impressive defensive lines in the league. Although they have not been great against the run, they’re allowing an average of 4.8 yards per carry, they’re a decent team against the pass. The defense has 10 sacks credited to them at a 2-1 record but will this be the game where Jalen Hurts puts it altogether?

A matchup to watch would be Emmanuel Forbes against DeVonta Smith. The last time that these two met, Smith put up 203 receiving yards on 11 catches and also tallied four touchdowns against him and Mississippi State. Of course, when Forbes was asked who he can’t wait to line up against, his response was DeVonta Smith.

X-factor: Terry McLaurin

If the Eagles want to go 4-0 then they have to limit the damage done by Terry McLaurin today. While he hasn’t had the greatest start to the 2023 season, McLaurin can turn that around in the blink of an eye. Slay has held up well against him but can the Eagles defense force the Commanders offense to make mistakes?

AP Photo/Julio Cortez