You’ve probably seen this stat by now, but I’ll share it again just in case you haven’t.
The Philadelphia Eagles have scored more than 20 points in each of their last 12 games. They’ve also scored at least 26 points in each of their last six games. In other words, they’ve been pretty good at scoring.
Today’s the day where the Eagles’ offense will be put to the test.
Look, the Broncos’ defense isn’t as good as it was during the height of their Super Bowl runs. Wade Phillips is gone. Some of the players have changed. But a number of key players are still there: Von Miller, Aqib Talib, Chris Harris Jr., etc.
Denver also figures to be desperate in this game. Sitting at 3-4, they’re essentially playing for this season.
Desperation has forced Denver’s hand at quarterback. 2016 and 2017 starter Trevor Siemian has been benched. The Broncos are now relying on ... Brock Osweiler.
No need to beat around the bush: Osweiler is pretty awful. He was so bad that the Texans had to give up a second-round pick just to dump his contract this offseason. Osweiler has more combined turnovers (31) than he does touchdowns (29). He also takes a lot of sacks: 52 in 37 games played.
Based on how the Eagles’ defensive line dominated the 49ers, Osweiler could be in for a tough outing. Philly has been strong up front all season long. Look for them to try to stop the Broncos’ rushing attack and make Denver try to rely on Osweiler’s arm (lol).
On the flip side, the aforementioned Denver defense could be tough to crack. The Eagles allowed way too much pressure on Carson Wentz last Sunday. They’ll need to be better this week, and that’ll be a challenge because the Broncos have some really good pass rushers. Miller being matched up on Halapoulivaati Vaitai is a scary thought.
This could be a game where the Eagles look to attack the middle of the field. As we’ve noted all week long, the Broncos have struggled to cover tight ends. Zach Ertz, who is dealing with a hamstring injury, is a key player in this game.
It’ll also be interesting to see how the Eagles approach their ground game. Denver’s run defense is good; they’ve allowed the second fewest rush yards in the league. But that doesn’t mean the Eagles shouldn’t try to see what newly acquired runner Jay Ajayi and the powerful LeGarrette Blount can do. The presence of Ajayi, who is reportedly expected to play, is especially intriguing. Maybe he can add some explosiveness in the backfield.
The feeling here is this could be a tough game. I’m saying the game is 17-13 until late in the fourth quarter when Philadelphia finally pulls away and seals the game with a touchdown. Eagles win and advance to 8-1 before the bye. What a time to be alive.
(Note: Everyone here obviously wants to see the Eagles win every game, but I hardly think today’s tilt is a must-win affair. Just as I said in Week 2, losing to an AFC team isn’t the end of the world. The Eagles could lose to the Broncos and beat the Cowboys in Week 11 and be just fine. But forget I said that, Eagles, and go win anyway.)
Score prediction: Eagles win, 24-13
Bold prediction: Jay Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount combine for two rushing touchdowns. (The Broncos haven’t allowed a rushing TD all season.)
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