Date & Time: Oct. 24th – 4:05 PM
Location: Paradise, Nevada – Allegiant Stadium
- Philadelphia Eagles Injury Report
- OG Jack Anderson (Hamstring)
- S Anthony Harris
- Las Vegas Raiders Injury Report
- TE Nick Bowers (Neck)
The Philadelphia Eagles travel to Nevada to take on the Las Vegas Raiders in a NFC vs. AFC matchup. The Raiders are coming off a resiliant win, in the aftermath of the Jon Gruden email fiasco, defeating the Denver Broncos, 34-24.
The Las Vegas Raiders offense ranks 13th in the NFL (3rd ranked passing offense – 29th ranked rushing offense). According to SHARP, Las Vegas ranks number one in the NFL in explosive play rate. Henry Ruggs leads the NFL with 22 yards per catch and QB Derek Carr ranks 2nd in the NFL in passing yards and 3rd in yards per completion. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention one of the top tight ends in the NFL, Darren Waller, who leads the team in targets and receptions. Waller was added to the injury report on Saturday.
Defensively, it’s a tale of two sides. The Raiders rank 17th in total defense (11th against the pass and 25th against the run).
Meanwhile, the Eagles are well rested after kicking off week 6 on last Thursday night in a losing effort against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The same issues continue to plague the team, week after week. Slow offensive starts have been the achilles hill of this Eagles team for much of the 2021 season. Against the explosive Las Vegas offense on the other side, the unit will have to start fast to have any chance.
Defensively, the Eagles amassed two turnovers last week (that makes 6 on the season). For Philadelphia to have any chance in this game, the front four will have to pressure Derek Carr. The unit should be up for the task as they will be matched up with an offensive line that has given up 8th most sacks in the NFL.
3 Things to Watch for the Eagles
1) Dallas Goedert against the Las Vegas linebackers
The Las Vegas defense has allowed the 5th most receiving yards to opposing tight ends through 6 weeks.
Dallas Goedert is the Eagles’ unopposed TE1 with the trade of Zach Ertz to the Arizona Cardinals. His volume of targets in the passing game should increase exponentially. Expect Goedert to have a high number of targets in this game, against a team that utilizes a heavy amount of cover 3 looks (attack the seams). Goedert should be the focal point of the passing attack.
2) Jonathan Gannon vs. the Raiders passing attack
The Raiders offense wants so take the top off defenses. Jonathan Gannon’s M.O. as Eagles defensive coordinator is to take away big plays from opposing offenses. Something will have to give in this matchup.
The Raiders offense ranks 3rd in intended air yards per pass attempt. They want to push the ball down the field. But, an area of weakness for the Las Vegas offense is the offensive line. Las Vegas has given up the 9th most pressures in the NFL. The team is starting rookie Alex Leatherwood at right guard, along with journeyman, Brandon Parker at right tackle. Parker finished as the team’s lowest graded player in week 5. The Raiders offensive line has struggled.
3) Miles Sanders usage
The Las Vegas defensive line gives up the 7th most rushing yards per attempt in the NFL.
The Eagles are getting Lane Johnson back at right tackle this week. If there was ever any time for the Eagles to run the ball, it’s in this game. Sanders has seen his touches within the offense dwindle, but a running back with his dynamic ability should award him opportunities in this game.
For the Eagles, this game will come down to whether or not they can get after Derek Carr and make him uncomfortable. Fletcher Cox is my X-Factor for this game.
Against a team that barely runs the ball, this defensive front should be able to pin their ears back and pressure Derek Carr all afternoon.
Pick: Eagles 24, Raiders 16
This is a game that will tell a ton about where the Eagles are as a team.
Las Vegas could be without it’s superstar tight end/receiver Darren Waller, as he was added to the injury report on Saturday.
The Raiders have wins this season over the Ravens, Steelers, Dolphins, and Broncos.
The jury is still out on who this team is, add in the resignation of former head coach Jon Gruden and all the impact that specific situation has had on that organization, and the variability with this team on a weekly basis is even more magnified. You truly don’t know what you’re getting on a weekly basis.
This is a matchup that favors the Eagles in my opinion. The Las Vegas offensive line is porus. The Eagles front 4 should have ample opportunity to wreck this game, and I think they will do just that. The Eagles win.
Bold Prediction: Miles Sanders eclipses 100 scrimmage yards.