The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the rag-tag group of 2nd and 3rd stringers that Brian Daboll’s New York Giants trotted into Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday afternoon.
The seemingly uninspiring 22-16 victory secured the Eagles the NFC East division crown, the No. 1 seed in the NFC, a first-round bye, and earned them their franchise-record 14th win of the season.
Philadelphia scored a single touchdown through four quarters on Sunday and saw the majority of their points come off the right foot of Jake Elliott.
Elliott kicked field goals of 32, 52, and 39 yards in the first half. He added field goals of 54 and 22 yards in the second half.
The offense seemed to lack rhythm, which can be attributed to a number of factors (Jalen Hurts’ first game back from a two week absence and Nick Sirianni and co. not wanting to open the playbook vs. the Giants 2nd and 3rd string defense are two that stick out), but nevertheless, they came away with the victory.
Throughout the 2022-23 campaign, the Eagles have experienced a roller coaster of ups and downs.
From starting the season 8-0, to narrow wins over the Cardinals and Colts, to losing their MVP-hopeful quarterback for two weeks and then dropping two games in a row, they’ve seen both prosperity and adversity.
For Darius Slay, the accomplishment meant an awful lot to the Pro Bowl cornerback.
“It means a lot to me. I’ve been in the league 10 years and never won a division in my life,” said Slay after the game. “I got one. I’ve never had a bye week (in the playoffs). I’ve never seen the second round (of the playoffs). I get to see both of them at one time, so I’m thankful.”
It’s the second year in a row that the Eagles will be playing January football and for Nick Sirianni, it’s another box to check off.
“We just know how much bigger our goals are and I’m not gonna get into the next goal (being) the Super Bowl, it’s not — the next goal is the next day,” Sirianni said following the win over the Giants.
The Eagles are seemingly in the perfect spot. They have home-field advantage in the playoffs, they have a bye week that will allow them to get several key pieces on both sides of the ball healthier, and they are led by a head coach and quarterback combo that aren’t going to let them get ahead of themselves.
“We just accomplished a great goal of ours,” Jalen Hurts said following the win over the Giants. “My whole thing moving forward is, let’s prepare to play our best ball. It’s been a great ride this year but the job isn’t finished.”
The Eagles won’t play again until January 21 or January 22 when they face the lowest remaining seed after the wild card round kicks off next Saturday.
The matchups are as follows:
- (5) Cowboys at (4) Buccaneers
- 6) Giants at (3) Vikings
- (7) Seahawks at (2) 49ers
Cover Image Credit: AP Photo/Chris Szagola