The Philadelphia Eagles and Denver Broncos are set to square off this week. It’s a matchup between a team that’s scored more than 20 points in 12 of their last 12 games (the Eagles) and a team that’s scored more than 20 points in three of their last 12 games (the Broncos).
In order to preview the Eagles’ Week 9 game against Denver, I reached out to our enemies over at Mile High Report. The wise Sadaraine kindly took the time to answer my questions about the upcoming game. Let's take a look at the answers. (Also don't forget to check out my Q&A exchanges over at Mile High Report.)
1 - Obviously have to start with the quarterback question. What’s the reaction to Trevor Siemian getting benched? Is that the right move? Which Broncos quarterback gives Denver the best chance to win this week?
For me, the reaction is elation. I started souring on Siemian about 8 games into last season. His game has absolutely gone in the gutter. If you watched Monday Night Football, Gruden was spot on with his assessment of Siemian's playing scared and it effecting his mechanics. Yes, it was the right move.
I think Brock Osweiler is the best shot the team has at salvaging anything out of this season. I do not like what we saw from Paxton Lynch in training camp or the preseason games. I'm actually a bit bullish on Brock after his joke of a year in Houston (which was very toxic from everything I've read). He's not going to light up the scoreboard, but I know the guy can win big games. He's done it for us before and we still have a defense that is good enough so that it all won't rest on his shoulders.
2 - Is the quarterback position the only reason why the Broncos have struggled lately? Are there other significant issues?
It is the biggest problem by far, but not the only one. The offensive line is still a year away from getting whole. They are a very good unit at run blocking, but have huge issues at pass protection. The biggest weaknesses there are our right tackle and left guard positions. Our rookie left tackle has been surprisingly decent though which has been a very pleasant surprise for most of the Broncos fans.
On defense, the middle of the field in the passing game is where there is a weakness. Denver has always struggled defending tight ends and this year is no exception. Our ILB talent is not deep and they have had some pretty significant issues with pass coverage which teams have been exploiting fairly consistently.
3 - What makes Denver’s defense so good?
The core thing that makes Denver's defense is still there: It has the best two corners in the NFL, hands down with no question in my mind whatsoever. Aqib Talib and Chris Harris, Jr. are the friggin #Truth. When you have corners that are elite on the outside, it makes everything easier for a defense in today's pass happy NFL game.
But the biggest thing that gets attention this year about our defense is no joke either. Our front-7 are absolute monsters against the run. Domata Peko is having what looks to me like one of his best seasons of his career and we've seen a 2nd year player in Adam Gotsis take a big step forward in his play at RDE. They've shut down the best the NFL has to offer and I think the Eagles may be the biggest test for them yet this year.
4 - What’s one matchup that really favors the Broncos? And one that really favors the Eagles?
Aqib Talib on either one of your starting WRs is an easy pick for me. Talib gets beat by the guys with the quicks and neither Jeffrey nor Smith have the kind of ability that is going to make Talib have a bad day.
If your offense can scheme Zach Ertz in single coverage against either Todd Davis or Brandon Marshall, your fans are going to have a good time. Denver can adjust and get safety help, but they tend to let teams work them a bit before they do so and sadly it is a well many teams this year have brought their bucket to with great success.
5 - Which one Eagles player would you steal if you could have them on the Broncos? Which Broncos player would you put on the Eagles if you were trying to help Philly?
Carson Wentz, all day long and twice on Sundays, please. The QB position is the biggest deal in the NFL and Denver's cupboard is bare. Having a young, promising, fiery guy like Wentz would right a lot of wrongs for the Broncos.
Menelik Watson would be the guy I'd love to see starting across from Von Miller. He's been a turnstile at RT this year (not that we have anything better on the depth chart, let me assure you). That being said, Von would wreck your team's day single handedly with that match up.
Bonus: Who wins this game and why? What's your score prediction?
I've got the Eagles winning this one in a close one as the Broncos offense still struggles and has a couple of costly turnovers that make the difference. Broncos 17 - Eagles 27