Winning The Turnover Battle Has Been Key For Reid After The Bye

Joe Robbins

Everyone knows that the key to being successful consistently in the NFL is to win the turnover battle.

In the Eagles 6 games this year, they have turned the ball over more than the other team in 5 of them. They have an offense that turns the ball over at a rapid rate, and a defense that can't create turnovers. Needless to say, it is the a winning combination and it is a big reason why the Eagles are 3-3.

The Eagles turnover problem is the one thing fans point to when they predict Reid to get his first loss after a Bye Week this upcoming Sunday against Atlanta.

But one of the main reasons Reid has been so successful after the Bye? His team has cut down on turnovers.

In the 13 games the Eagles have played after a Bye Week with Andy Reid as head coach, they have won the turnover battle in 9 of them. They have tied the other team in turnovers in 3 of them, and lost the turnover battle just once. Overall, Reid's team is 9-1-3 in the turnover battle in games following a Bye.

We all know Reid's record before the Bye Week is not stellar, and once again turnovers point to one of the main reasons why. In the games before the Bye Week, Reid's teams are 5-2-6 in the turnover battle. Overall, Reid's teams have turned the ball over 23 times before the Bye Week, and only 16 times after. The defense has also improved after the Bye, as they have forced 5 more turnovers after the Bye Week in Reid's 13 years as a head coach.

Now part of the reason for this trend is the fact that in the majority of these games, Reid has had Donovan McNabb at quarterback. We all know that while McNabb was great at not turning the ball over during his time in Philadelphia. Michael Vick, on the other hand, has been a turnover machine. But even with Vick, Reid has been able to cut down the turnovers after the Bye Week.

It is a small sample size, but in the two games that Vick has started for the Eagles after the Bye Week, he is yet to turn the ball over.

Can this trend continue? The Atlanta Falcons have a +10 turnover differential, and have forced 17 turnovers in the 6 games they have played- an average of nearly 3 turnovers per game. They have also yet to lose the turnover battle this season.

If you look at just this season, the Eagles chances of turning things around, not turning the ball over, and winning the game are not great.

But come kickoff on Sunday, the Eagles and Andy Reid are hoping that history is on their side.

Follow Eliot Shorr-Parks on Twitter at @EliotShorrParks

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