Grit and perseverance: the Philadelphia Eagles have found their identity.
The Eagles looked to be out of the NFC East race early on in 2019 after dropping two of their first three games, but a massive win against future Hall-of-Famer Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay on Thursday night proved this team will not go down without a fight. Rogers was previously 58-0-1 at Lambeau Field when leading by 10 or more points.
The Eagles moved to 2-2 in the season following a 34-27 win in Green Bay that highlighted multiple goal line stops for the defense, and the revived rushing attack of Jordan Howard and Miles Sanders offered a shot in the arm to the Eagles offense.
Former Chicago Bears RB Jordan Howard had 87 yards and two rushing touchdowns along with a receiving TD from Carson Wentz, who also had three touchdowns and no interceptions that night.
Rookie RB Miles Sanders also had his first major showing, rushing for 72 yards on 11 carries (6.5 yards per carry), and a 67 yard kick return that put the Eagles in position to score their first touchdown of the night after going down 10-0 early.
A stellar defensive performance capped off by Nigel Bradham’s game sealing goal-line interception of Aaron Rodgers proved to the world on prime-time television that this 2019 Eagles team may be down, but they are far from out.
It felt a lot like the energy they had in 2017.
After the Cowboys’ hot 3-0 start, I believed that they would be a tough team to dethrone from first in the NFC East, however an embarrassing 12-10 loss to a backup QB in New Orleans has made me change my stance on the division this year.
The Cowboys play an angry Packers team who has had extra time to prepare since their last game against the Eagles on Thursday. The Packers are going into this game against the Cowboys as a “must win” in a tight NFC North where the Bears are also having success thus far.
The Eagles on the other hand return to Lincoln Financial Field this week to play Jets backup QB Luke Falk (presumably), as Jets starter Sam Darnold has been ruled doubtful with mononucleosis. Darnold has been out the past few weeks due spleen enlargement from the disease, and a hit to the spleen could cause him to bleed to death.
The spread right now for this Sunday’s Eagles-Jets contest is -14 for the Eagles. I feel fairly safe about this game and can say I believe the Eagles will go to 3-2 while the Cowboys will drop another game to Green Bay and be tied with the Eagles in the division after Week 5.
If the Eagles can maintain the rushing attack we saw on Thursday Night, there’s no telling where this team could finish this season.
Jordan Howard is a bully who battles for yards and can make catches out of the backfield while Miles Sanders is the shifty, lightning-in-a-bottle type player who offers the change of pace and catches defenses off guard for big gains.
Not to mention, the Eagles’ run game opens up Carson Wentz and the passing game. Eagles deep threat WR Desean Jackson is hoped to be available against the Jets Sunday after playing Week 1 against Washington, in which he went for 8 receptions for 154 yards and two touchdowns.
The Eagles have their swagger back and should cruise against the Jets Sunday. If they can make a run here and get to 4-2 before prime-time in Dallas on October 20t, there is no reason that this should not be the Eagles division to lose this year.
The Cowboys had a fraudulent beginning to 2019 with three easy wins, and I believe the Eagles are coming for everything “Big D” stands for and represents.
Time for the birds to put their heads down and go to work.
The Eagles play the Jets on 10/6 at 1 PM on CBS. My prediction: Eagles Win 35-10.
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