3 keys to the game that should help the Eagles defeat the Giants on Christmas Day

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Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) celebrates his touchdown with Philadelphia Eagles running back D’Andre Swift (0) during the second half of an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday, Sept. 14, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

At 10-4, the Philadelphia Eagles are crumbling right before our eyes. After starting off the season with the best record in the NFL, they have lost three games in a row and fallen to the 5th seed in the NFC

Some can say that this collapse was expected due to the close win games during the beginning of the season or because of the sheer luck that the team had early on. They’re not completely wrong. But if we’re being honest for a moment, it’s pretty tough to win on luck alone in the NFL.

As a team that was expected to dominate the NFC this season, those games ended how people expected them to end, with wins. What no one expected was dropping three in a row in the fashion that they have. In the first two, they were blown out by their NFC foes, and in the third, the offense didn’t show up which forced the defense to play on the field for too long and lose the game.

One side can’t survive if the other side doesn’t do their part. Especially when the other side is supposed to be the strength of the team. Well, speaking of strengths, let’s go over several keys to the game for the Eagles matchup against the Giants on Christmas Day.

Win convincingly

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts celebrates after scoring the game winning touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during overtime in an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 26, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

It won’t be enough for the Eagles to just squeak out a win against the lowly Giants. The team will have to win convincingly for people to start believing in them once again. This means that the offense has to be on and for them to be on would mean that Brian Johnson and Nick Sirianni are progressing as opposed to being stubborn in their ways.

With all of the reports questioning the culture of the team, and the leadership of Jalen Hurts, and now it is revealed that Hurts has more freedom on offense. It would be in Nick Sirianni’s best interest to protect the team’s biggest investment, the franchise QB. While Sirianni has taken the blame for the offense, he needs to take accountability for the regression of his quarterback. 

Has he placed too much on Hurts’ plate? Is the burden of the complexity of the offense getting to the young QB? There are so many questions that need answering and the only way to answer them would be to win convincingly on Monday afternoon. The Eagles need to channel their 2022 killer instinct and make sure that they run up the score on their division rival.

Bring the pressure

Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Josh Sweat (94) and safety Sydney Brown (21) react after a tackle against the Seattle Seahawks during the first half of an NFL football game, Monday, Dec. 18, 2023, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Lindsey Wasson)

There’s no reason as to why Tommy DeVito should feel confident during this game. The names on this defensive line should instill fear in the young QB whenever he lines up to take the snap. Unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case at all this season. Every QB has had their way with this defense and hasn’t felt any fear when facing this pass rush. 

Haason Reddick may have 10+ sacks but his presence has yet to be felt like it was last season. Reddick was clutch for this defense on third and fourth down as he forced turnovers in nearly every game last season. The continuity of this defensive line just feels lost and it doesn’t feel like a line that’s playing together right now. There’s a lot of guys doing things out there for numbers but it isn’t for the ones on the scoreboard.

Run. The. Ball.

Philadelphia Eagles running back D’Andre Swift (0) falls with the ball near Washington Commanders safety Kamren Curl during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 1, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Understand me when I say this. The Eagles need to run the ball, consistently. To establish the run game means that defenses are bought into the idea that any play that involves D’Andre Swift is capable of ending with the score. Unfortunately, no defense besides the Vikings has felt that way this season.

The Eagles tend to go with two-run plays that go for minimal yardage and then they turn to the pass game for the next several plays until about the second half of the game. There is no effort to help the offense, it’s all about the big plays. 

Offensively the Eagles have not been able to establish a rhythm throughout any game this season. They’ve struggled on third downs and they’ve gone away from the run game way too often. It’s time to commit. What do you have to lose at this point? You have four running backs that are more than capable of producing for you. Well, three since no one knows why Rashaad Penny is in the doghouse. 

AP Photo/Matt Slocum