Finally, we had an 18th week of the NFL regular season. Much like the final two slices of eating a frozen pizza on my own, it was probably not necessary. There was plenty to play for going into the swan song of the season, yet the Philadelphia Eagles rested many of their key starters against the Cowboys. It was not even close in this one, as the ‘Boys knocked around Philly 51-26.
I am sorry for your loss Philadelphia Eagles, but your season is over!
Yes, the Eagles play in the Wild Card round this week but unless the ghost of “Big Richard” Nick Foles comes rolling through this is going to be short-lived. The Eagles closed the regular season at 9-8, which is what the NY Giants would call, “a banner year.” Notching nine wins is decent. It’s just over .500 so please don’t celebrate a “winning season.” Add to it this fact: The Eagles were unable to win a single game against a team with a winning record. If only this were the NBA where sub .500 teams can “play in” to the playoffs.
Dak and the Cowboys have been inconsistent this season as it comes to offensive performance. Well, who doesn’t like a “get-right game” to prepare for the playoffs? He threw for 295 yards and five touchdowns on 21 completions! Nearly every fourth throw he made was a touchdown?! Forget Brady or Rodgers, the real MVP is Dak’s surgical team. Welcome back!
Coach Mike McCarthy promised to run the ball, now that the fantasy playoffs were over. The Eagles rolled over on the ground like the good puppy they are allowing the Cowboys 5.3 per carry, two touchdowns, and 171 yards. Who wants a cookie?! Philadelphia’s defense was benign all game. They ended with no forced fumbles, no interceptions, and the pressure on Dak resulted in two hits and one sack. Keep preaching the strategy of resting your starters but let’s not ignore the other side of the coin which is destroying the fragile confidence of your depth chart.
The Philly B team tried their best and at times were showing signs of life. DeVonta Smith surpassed DeSean Jackson’s rookie receiving yards record with a four-yard reception then immediately grabbed some pine. The running game hit 149 yards which is respectable. That allowed the Eagles to set a new franchise record for rushing in a season that was intact since 1949.
Minshew was flashy as expected, getting a couple of passing touchdowns but also the game’s lone turnover. When you dig deeper into the stats to see how different the offenses are, the Cowboys were able to get 10.5 yards per completion while the Eagles mustered 4.5 yards. Of all the cliches out there, “check-downs win championships” is my favorite.
All in all, this is a nice start to The Nick Sirianni Era. Making the playoffs is an accomplishment for sure. As a Bears fan, this reminds me of Nagy’s first season when they had an equally weak schedule and a playoff berth.
Enjoy the slide into the playoffs Eagles fans. May the trip be less slippery than your fine city’s greased light poles on game day.
Do you want more NFL discussion? Then check out these links!
Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/54/Jalen_Hurts%2C_2020.jpg, cropped under CC BY SA 2.0