WITH the series tied at one game apie- Oh sorry. Wrong Houston team.
Congratulations to the Eagles Offense. They beat the charges! The judge ruled that what QB Jalen Hurts and WR A.J. Brown did to the Steelers, was “self-defense”. Most of the people in attendance testified to that. The rest of them kept quiet, because they knew what was good for them. Then we all went out for beers.
Now onto Houston! This is a short week, folks. Despite their 1 – 5 – 1 record, keep in mind, this is still an NFL team. So we can’t take them lightly. Because on any given Sunday, any team is capable of- Baahahahahaha! Just kidding! We’re going 8 – 0.
The Texans simply don’t have the tools to win this game. Also, due to massaging the facts about their level of involvement in “possibly” covering-up a certain player’s behavior, they lack the Karma for their prayers to go anywhere but straight to voice-mail. Have you been watching their games this year? Jesus is leaving them on “read”. So there won’t be any miracles. (Plus their baseball team is dirty,)
A win here puts us at 8 – 0, and clearly at the head of the NFL’s table, as it’s only undefeated team. A loss would make us 7 – 1, but that would still have us at the top of the NFC, since we’d have one more win than Minnesota (6 – 1). Even if they won their upcoming game on Sunday, they’d be 7 – 1 and lose the tie-breaker, as their only loss came vs the Eagles.
As for bragging rights about the NFL’s best… It’s nice to say, but it won’t really carry much weight until after we win the Super Bowl. Even if both the Eagles and Bills were 7 – 1, the argument over who was “best” wouldn’t be worth being baited into.
The point of Four Things isn’t to predict a winner, it’s to discuss which tactics would give our Eagles the best chance to win this game. So here are the Four Things that we need to focus on this week, versus the: Texans
1) Run the Damned Ball: This game should be a showcase for RB Miles Sanders. I’m talking 20 – 29 carries. The Texans just lost a game in which they gave up 314 rushing yards. In that game there were 40 hand-offs, to just 10 pass attempts. Not completions. ATTEMPTS. Even when they knew what was coming, the Texans couldn’t stop it. Part of that their 4 – 3 front lacks size, and the other part is a lack of talent.
2) Start Basic: There isn’t much time to game plan for this one, so all the fancy stuff has to go out the window. Let’s whittle it down to a few things we know. A) Their QB can’t run; B) Their WR’s will have a hard time getting open; C) Their RB isn’t the least bit scary or special.
So trot out a basic 4 – 3 Under front. At least in the first half.
Use the four linemen (Blue dots) to control the gaps, so that we clog or severely slow the Texans run game. Get OLB Hasaan Reddick (Yellow S) on frequent blitzes of the front side. We want their QB to see the rush approaching. That should force the ball out of his hand early. If that happens enough, all we need to do is add defenders for instant turnovers.
3) Make Tackles: It’s a short week. Both teams played on Sunday. Each will come out with the usual energy, and by mid-second quarter, everyone will be tired. Tired football leads to sloppy football, and sloppy football has a way of leading to broken plays,which lead to upsets. Do the small things.
If I could give the players a quick pep talk, it would go like this: Know your group assignments. Communicate. Know your gap assignments. Communicate. Don’t pick this week to start freelancing! Bring your arms to every tackle. LEAD with your arms on every tackle! Don’t celebrate tackles, unless it was 4th down.
4) Slot Their Throats: I often suggest using WR Quez Watkins in different ways, because most teams with a guy as fast as he is, have that guy as their #1 or #2. He’s our #3 which gives us an insane amount of flexibility if we want it. This week we should put him on the outside and play WR Devonta Smith in the Slot.
The idea is make one move, to exploit two weaknesses. They have CB Steven Nelson out there. He was a decent for us last year, but the knock on him, is that he lacks top-end speed. Watkins isn’t just top-end fast, he’s upper echelon fast. If you see Watkins line-up with butter in his hand, it means toast is on the way.
Devonta is a silky-smooth route runner. The Texans lack the depth in their secondary to cover him short. Even worse, they don’t have a LB who can stay in the camera frame with him, if he runs a five yard Out. Just flip-flipping two guys stresses the Texans’ secondary deep and intermediate, and should give QB Jalen Hurts quick targets.
If the Eagles do these Four Things, then we’ll be virtually impossible to beat. That being said…
This is a short week. I keep saying that, to drive the point home. Everything in this Four Things is designed to create immediate problems for the Texans. Do basic things like tackle and control the clock with the run. Force early turnovers, and overwhelm them with quick wide open passes.
Ideally, we’d get up 24 – 3, and QB Gardner Minshew would be put in, to take us the rest of the way. Even if it’s before the half. WE DON’T HAVE ANOTHER BYE WEEK!
We haven’t had full time to recover from Sunday, and any nick or scrape we get Thursday, just carries forward. So get up big, rest the starters, and get then the eleven days of rest, between this game and Washington. We need that sweep.
Prediction: EAGLES 28 – Texans 10
WARNING: I don’t have the faintest clue as to what a point spread is, and I know even less about how it works. I know football and that’s IT. If you use Four Things as a gambling tool, you are trying to lose your money, and will deserve it when you do.
Check back in a couple of days for Four Things Reviewed, and we’ll discuss how this game went.