Date & Time: November 15th – 1:00 P.M.
Location: East Rutherford, New Jersey – MetLife Stadium
- Philadelphia: Craig James (OUT)
- New York: Devonta Freeman (OUT), Golden Tate (Questionable), Isaac Yiadom (Questionable)
For the second time in 3 weeks, the Philadelphia Eagles will matchup with the New York Giants for the second NFC East divisional game. After defeating the Giants on Thursday night football and defeating the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night football, the Eagles return from their bye week healthy and rejuvenated. With a win in this Sunday’s matchup, the team can take a stranglehold on the NFC East. Let’s get into the matchup preview:
The Eagles offense will get A LOT of reinforcements back in this game. Miles Sanders, Alshon Jeffery, Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, and Jack Driscoll are all expected to be active. This offense will be absolutely loaded.
As stated in the week 7 preview, the Giants are led by James Bradberry on defense. He’s been one of the best cornerbacks in the league this year. Opposite Bradberry, however, is where this Giants passing defense is susceptible. Bradberry will likely draw Travis Fulgham in coverage which leaves Isaac Yiadom to cover Jalen Reagor. Yiadom’s coverage numbers have dropped off even further from where they were before the week 7 matchup. Per Pro Football Reference, Yiadom is now giving up a 146.2 passer rating when targeted and his receiving yards allowed per reception has risen to a staggering 16.9 yards. Yiadom can and should be hunted in coverage in this matchup.
Elsewhere in the passing game, Dallas Goedert should have opportunities to make plays in this game. Richard Rodgers had 6 catches for 85 yards in the week 7 matchup. Dallas Goedert should be able to take advantage of a Giants linebacking core that is below average in terms of passing coverage. The Giants may elect to bring Jabrill Peppers down into box on passing situations to cover Goedert.
The Eagles get back Miles Sanders in this game. In what is expected to be a rainy day, the Eagles may decide to lean on Miles Sanders a bit more than usual. Boston Scott should also see a sizeable amount of touches as well. And with Isaac Seumalo back up front blocking, expect the Eagles to utilize more zone blocking run concepts, which should allow Miles Sanders, East-West style of running to flourish.
Along the offensive line, the Eagles should be much better in this matchup. After allowing 13 pressures, 7 quarterback hits and 3 sacks in week 7 with Sua Opeta and Jordan Mialta, who likely had his worst performance of the season in that matchup, the expected returns of Isaac Seumalo and Jason Peters should stabilize the unit somewhat. Elsewhere, Lane Johnson, who was inactive against the Cowboys in week 8, is also expected to be back. In Johnson’s case, however, he may be in and out of the game with a nagging ankle injury. In this case, Jack Driscoll’s presence will matter extensively. Against a Giants defense that is 11th in the league in sacks and 7th in pressures, the offensive line will have to be on their toes in the pass protection game.
Overall, it will ultimately come down to Carson Wentz. Will we get erratic Carson or calm Carson? With the Eagles on the bye week last week, Wentz was given a much needed break. And with Doug Pederson, saying that the team would be in the building during the bye week, Wentz was likely given some time to reassess his play over the first half of the season. With the Eagles offense getting pieces back and most importantly, the offensive line getting healthy, Wentz should be able to settle down and not press as much as he has early on in the season.
In the two games since the Giants loss to the Eagles, they’ve given up 8 sacks. This is a game where the Eagles defensive line can absolutely wreck the Giants offensive line. The Giants, however, do get Will Hernandez back at left guard. However, Hernandez’s presence doesn’t make up for the deficiencies of Andrew Thomas at left tackle, who was very shaky in pass protection in the week 7 matchup.
The Giants wide receivers pose a challenging matchup for the Eagles cornerbacks, outisde of Darius Slay who will again draw Darius Slayton in coverage. Slayton had just 2 catches for 23 yards against Slay.
Elsewhere, Avonte Maddox and Nickell Robey-Coleman or Cre’von Leblanc (depending on if they split the nickel snaps) will draw Sterling Shepard and Golden Tate respectively. Depending on if the Giants decide to place Shepard in the slot, where he has excelled, those matchups could change. Either way, Maddox, Robey-Coleman and Leblanc with have to keep their heads on a swivel because these wide receivers are quick and sharp route runner who excel after the catch.
At safety and linebacker, with the talent deficiencies that exist at linebacker, Jalen Mills or Will Parks will likely be the candidates to cover Evan Engram in the passing game. Mills, who had an interception in the week 7 matchup, should be able to be at least average in coverage against Engram.
Elsewhere, in the running game, for the Giants, they will be without Devonta Freeman. Wayne Gallman will likely be the lead back. The Giants running game should have very limited opportunities for success in this game. The key in this game will once again be to take away the run, make the New York offense one dimensional, and then tee off on Daniel Jones. This is something this Eagles defensive line is very capable of accomplishing.
For Doug Pederson, his team is getting healthy and getting healthy at the right time. Pederson’s team has not lost to the Giants since 2016, although the last few matchups have been very close. Pederson will have to be much better early on in scripting games in order to give his team a bit of a bigger cushion in this divisional matchup. Elsewhere, the Giants head coach, Joe Judge has his team playing and playing hard for him. They compete and they are not to be taken lightly by Doug Pederson and co.
Daniel Jones is 4-0 against the Washington Football team in his career. His only other career win came against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 3 of last season. This means Daniel is 0-16 against every other team in his career except the Washington Football Team and one win over Tampa Bay. That is flat out atrocious. Ultimately, teams are only as good as their quarterback. This is something we’ve seen time and time again throughout the NFL.
Conversely for Philadelphia, they’ve won 2 games in a row. Momentum is a real thing in the NFL. Combine that with the fact that they’re getting healthy and this has every ingredient for a decisive victory. Also, the Giants haven’t beaten the Eagles since November 16, 2016. Understanding this, I think Philadelphia will win this game.
Bold Prediction: Eagles defense gets 3 interceptions
Pick: Eagles 35, Giants 17