No Easy Games For The Eagles

by Marc Narducci | Oct 25, 2021
No Easy Games For The Eagles

 So many people suggested that if the Eagles could hang in there during their first six games that things would be much more manageable after that.

The opening schedule was difficult, including games with last year’s two Super Bowl teams, Kansas City and defending champion Tampa Bay.

So the fact that the Eagles went 2-4 in the first six games by no means ended any chances of earning a postseason berth.

The schedule was supposed to turn beginning this past Sunday while facing a Las Vegas Raiders team that despite being at home, opened only as only a three-point favorite against the Eagles.

The Raiders had accepted the resignation of coach Jon Gruden after several inappropriate emails were leaked and were supposed to be in disarray.

Instead, Las Vegas won 34-24 at Denver in the first game under interim coach Rich Bisaccia and then handled the Eagles at home on Sunday, 33-22, in a game that wasn’t anywhere nearly as close as the final outcome.

So the Raiders are now 5-2, while the Eagles are 2-5. Maybe the pundits were wrong about the Raiders.

About the Eagles?

That remains to be seen.

They were so thoroughly outclassed by the Raiders that quarterback Derek Carr completed 31 of 34 passes (91.1 percent) for 323 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.

And Carr didn’t have his biggest threat, standout tight end Darren Waller, who was sidelined with an ankle injury.

The Eagles defense made Raiders backup tight end Foster Moreau, look like Waller. Moreau had six receptions for 60 yards and one touchdown.

Admit it – how many of you even heard of Moreau before Sunday?

He entered the game with four receptions for 53 yards and a touchdown in the previous six games this season.

After that thorough dismantling, maybe it’s time that people stop saying the Eagles have an upcoming easy schedule.

For it’s possible that no opponent should be considered easy for the Eagles.

That includes this week’s opponent, the Detroit Lions.

The Lions will take an 0-7 record into Sunday’s 1 p.m. game against the Eagles in Detroit.

A closer looks indicates how hard the Lions are playing for first-year coach Dan Campbell.

Two of their losses, to the Baltimore Ravens and Minnesota Vikings, occurred when both opponents kicked last-second long field goals.

Baltimore won when Justin Tucker kicked an NFL-record 66-yard field goal as time expired. The Minnesota loss occurred when Greg Joseph kicked a 54-yard field goal as time expired.

Those were two gut punches and the week after the Minnesota loss, Detroit was handled by a better than expected Cincinnati Bengals team, 34-11.

Yet the Lions bounced back on Sunday and lost 28-19 at the Los Angeles Rams, a viable Super Bowl contender.

Detroit led 19-17 (there’s that score again) entering the fourth quarter.

The Lions have some good players including Philadelphia native D’Andre Swift, who accounted for 144 total yards and a touchdown against the Rams.

One of the problems has been the inconsistency of Lions quarterback Jared Goff.

Regardless of Goff’s struggles, Detroit has continued to be competitive.

The same can’t be said about the Eagles.

Some may point to the 28-22 loss to Tampa Bay, but once the Eagles cut the lead to 28-22 with 5:54 left, Tampa Bay never gave back the ball and ran out the clock. The Bucs could have scored and made the game more lopsided, but all they cared about was winning. That one was never in doubt.

Many of the Eagles stats are accumulated in games against teams like Kansas City and Dallas when they were never in the game in the fourth quarter.

Dallas beat the Eagles 41-21 and Kansas City earned a 42-30 victory.

Even though the end of season schedule is lined up with losing teams, including two games each with the New York Giants and Washington Football Team and one with the New York Jets among the final six games, the Eagles haven’t earned the right to consider any game easy.

What was realistic this year was to look for progress from first-year head coach Nick Sirianni and quarterback Jalen Hurts.

At this point, neither has shown any signs that the Eagles fans should feel secure about the future and no current opponent should be considered easy regardless of their record.

Photo Courtesy of Philadelphia Eagles

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Author: Marc Narducci

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