One of the concerns for Eagles fans heading into the 2014 NFL season was the fact the team had to play a first place schedule due to finishing first in the NFC East in 2013. As it turned out, those concerns weren't really justified. Philadelphia finished tied for the 13th easiest schedule in 2014. That number wasn't too far off from the offseason strength of schedule which had them ranked 12th.
Now that the 2014 season is over and the Eagles' 2015 opponents are known, let's take a look ahead. This time around the Eagles won't have to deal with a first place schedule because they finished second in the NFC East.
Via Blogging the Boys, here is the full list SOS data for all NFL teams, with some other data points added in. "Quality opponents" include teams that won nine or more games in 2014.
|2015 Strength Of Schedule By Team
|Team||Opp W/L||Opp Win %||Games vs
The Eagles' 2015 schedule ranks as the 10th easiest based on strength of schedule. They are also one of nine teams that will only have to face six quality opponents. Only the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints will have to face less with four each. When it comes to point differential, the Eagles have the eighth easiest schedule.
As far as the Eagles' NFC East opponents go: the Giants have the 11th easiest ranked strength of schedule, the Dallas Cowboys are 9th, and the Washington Redskins are 13th. Just like the Eagles, each team has to face six quality opponents. The Giants have the 10th easiest schedule when it comes to point differential, while the Cowboys rank 13th and Washington ranks 18th.
It's unclear how much these numbers really mean at this point. There's so much time left before the season for things to change: free agency, the NFL draft, trades, injuries, player development, etc. Turnaround happens fast in the NFL, and it works both ways. The NFC South hardly proved to be much of a challenge this year but those teams could rebound in 2015. Meanwhile, other teams will regress. The Cowboys entered 2014 with the 14th easiest schedule and finished the season with the first easiest schedule.
The Eagles haven't really had an overly tough schedule since Chip Kelly arrived in 2013. It looks like that could be the case yet again, but we'll see.