WHO’S ready to finally win two games in a row?! I know the fans are. I just hope the Eagles are too. Ready as in, prepared. Ready as in, motivated. Ready as in, not looking past this week’s opponent, just because their injury situation is suddenly as bad as (and arguably worse than), ours is.
Having dropped 3 of their last 4, then losing half an offensive line, plus their starting QB, by all indications the Redskins playoff hopes are dead in the water at 6 – 5. History, on the other hand, teaches that a wounded animal is often a very dangerous one.
The Eagles come into this game with a 5 – 6 record. Without having strung two wins together all season long, thus far. Our playoff hopes also look thin.
That is, until you do the math, and realize that a win this week and next, would put us at the head of the NFC East. Yes. That is a fact. Look it up. In fact, here’s a link to the standings: BOOM!
However, before we get too far ahead of ourselves, there is this matter of the Redskins to attend to.
So let’s talk about the Four Things we need to focus on this week versus the Redskins:
1) Neuter their defense: Get the ball downfield to TE Zach Ertz. Nothing of the quick 5 yard variety. The ball needs to be in the air for 8 to 10, and towards the sideline. Make the Redskins have to cover him with an OLB and nullify their own edge rush. That will also soften those edges for RB Josh Adams on pitches and stretch runs.
2) Jump on their offense: QB Colt McCoy is a gutsy player. I actually like him. He plays the game the way fans can appreciate. Murder him. Take away the short quick passes and dial up the blitz. Kill this team quick. Do what we should have last week.
3) Keep our balance: Last week, offensive balance helped the Eagles erase a 16 point deficit. We looked like we were getting the hang of being balanced again. At no point did we have a swagger about us, but to me it kept looking like that was just over the next hill, or around the next corner. 31 passes to 27 runs. Those sort of numbers are what we need to shoot for this week as well.
4) KISS on Defense: Keep It Simple Stupid. We don’t need to do anything fancy to stop the run. Our players just need to trust what they see, and trust the man next to them. Set hard edges to keep the runner in front of a tackler, and then just hit our run fits. That’s it. Same as we did last year, and early this year.
If we do all these things, we’re just about guaranteed to win. Now that we’ve covered what should happen, let’s get into what likely will happen:
Eagles fans from Philadelphia are gonna hate me for saying this but: Trust the Process. Clawing back to the top is just that for us. It’s a process. A new Offensive Coordinator, a ton of injuries, a touch of complacency. We got knocked on our asses. Deservedly so.
Yet look at how we responded to it. Down 16 to a mange ridden cur last week. Perfect excuse to fold up, eat that 4 – 7 record and point to injuries as our easy out. All we had to do was lay down quietly. Sleep until September.
NOPE! We fought. And we aren’t done fighting. Some of these Secondary players from off the street got a taste of that. You think that hurt their confidence? Or maybe bolstered it?
Your Eagles will be prepared and motivated. Not because there are stakes. The stakes have always been there. They’ll be prepped and hyped, because they’re starting to feel it. The team isn’t there yet. Not yet. We need this second one in a row.
When we get it though…
PREDICTION: EAGLES 30 – Redskins 17