Playoff matchups the Eagles needs to be cautious of

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Playoff matchups the Eagles should be wary of


Sometimes playing well just means you have the biggest target on your back.

Generally taking part in properly simply means you may have the most important goal in your again.
Picture: Getty Photographs

The Philadelphia Eagles have dominated the NFC over the primary three months of the season en path to a league-best 10-1 begin. Apart from the sport towards Washington a few weeks in the past, Philly has discovered a technique to slither out with a win each time. They’ve already overwhelmed two of the highest three groups chasing them within the convention.

Certain, the Eagles are good, and reaching 10 wins earlier than some other staff is one thing to have fun, however there’s one thing about Philly that isn’t price trusting. Properly, that could possibly be loads of issues, however on the sector, these Eagles recall to mind the Pittsburgh Steelers of 2020. These Steelers additionally received off to an amazing begin, successful their first 11 video games earlier than dropping three of their final 4 video games to shut the season. They have been additionally eradicated within the divisional spherical of the playoffs by the Cleveland Browns of all groups.

This Eagles squad feels prefer it’s headed for early disappointment within the postseason. Nevertheless it’ll all depend upon matchups, and within the NFC, there aren’t many groups who appear to match up properly with Philadelphia proper now. Power of schedule apart, the Eagles have proven by way of 12 weeks of the season that they’re contenders, however that doesn’t imply they’re going to win all of it. Groups who can run the ball successfully to eat the clock, play tight protection, or have a top-10 quarterback are finest suited to knock these birds off their perch. Within the NFC, only a few groups possess sufficient of those attributes to significantly problem the Eagles.

Dallas Cowboys

Philly took the primary assembly with the Cowboys this season, minus Dak Prescott. The division rivals play once more on Christmas Eve in Dallas, and relying on how the subsequent 4 weeks spherical out, it might go a great distance in deciding the division. With Prescott on the sector, Dallas has what’s wanted to maintain up with the Eagles. They’ve received a playmaking QB just like the Eagles, they will run the ball when targeted on it, and the Cowboys’ protection is fairly good at attending to the QB.

One space that can be most important for the Cowboys towards the Eagles is stopping the run. Philly is fourth within the league dashing the ball, whereas Dallas ranks within the decrease third towards the run. However as we’ve seen this yr, when Dallas decides to play ball management, they’re at their finest. However, in fact, these are the Cowboys. Anticipating them to come back by way of, particularly within the playoffs, is like anticipating Daniel Snyder to do the appropriate factor in Washington.

San Francisco 49ers

I mentioned it a month in the past, and I’ll stand by it for the remainder of the season. The 49ers have the method to be probably the most harmful staff within the NFC and the very best probability of beating the Eagles within the playoffs. Since dropping to the Chiefs final month, the Niners have reeled off 4 wins and have held opponents to 14, 16, 10, and 0 factors, respectively. This protection permits the fewest factors within the NFL at 15.7 per recreation. They’re No. 1 in whole yards and rush yards allowed.

On the opposite aspect of the ball, San Francisco has an explosive offense with loads of weapons to counteract these in Philly. And in contrast to the Cowboys teaching workers, Kyle Shanahan will run the ball as a lot because it takes to get the job accomplished. All of the Niners must proceed doing is limiting the potential for Jimmy Garoppolo to make errors. If the 49ers can proceed alongside this path, they’ll be within the NFC championship recreation once more, presumably towards Philly. If it involves that, take the Niners.

Minnesota Vikings?

Okay, I do know what you’re saying. The Eagles dealt with the Vikings in Week 2, 24-7, behind 333 passing yards from Jalen Hurts. However that was Week 2, and Minnesota is a unique staff now. Following that loss to Philly, Minnesota went on a seven-game successful streak, by which they beat the Dolphins and Payments on the highway.

By the point the Vikings face the Eagles once more, in the event that they do, they’ll be battle examined. The Vikings aren’t on the high of the league statistically, but they’ve discovered methods to play successful soccer. After seeing the Eagles as soon as and studying from their errors (hopefully), Kevin O’Connell’s workers will probably develop a significantly better recreation plan the second time round.

For Minnesota, it comes right down to Kirk Cousins not making huge errors. He threw three interceptions within the Week 2 loss to Philadelphia. The Eagles battle towards the run, so a heavy dose early and infrequently is the important thing. Let the working recreation arrange some downfield makes an attempt for Cousins to Justin Jefferson. However you possibly can’t pressure something. The Vikings would want to get out forward of the Eagles as a result of it’s too laborious chasing them once you’re down greater than seven.

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