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Eagles vs. Chargers Week Four: Five Friday “For Sures”

BLG didn’t write this post, so there’s nothing smarmy here

NFL: Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Aaaand we’re back!

Sorry I missed Week 3, folks. Life got busy with travel and school. Lucky for you, my Week 3 film breakdown of the Giants held a few predictions that held true on Sunday. What is dead may never die, I suppose.

Rest assured, I would have quite easily predicted the game-winning 61 yard field goal from the rookie kicker. It’s not as if that’s never happened in Eagles history.

Before we move on to this week projections, we have to talk about the newest Carson Wentz detractor gallivanting across the interwebs, excising only the poorest plays of the QB’s performance and harping on those mistakes thereof.

I’m speaking, of course, of Carson Wentz himself:

Is Carson secretly funding the QB couch analysts of the world? Does he thrive off of hatred, not unlike a Sith Lord? When will we discover Carson’s fake Twitter account, and will the treasure trove therein rival that of Kevin Durant’s Instagram? These are serious questions that must be answered, after Carson’s shocking slip of his self-deprecating alter-ego.

And he thinks he can just sweep it all under the rug by donating The Game Check That Was Promised to charity. Oh, such a good guy.

Don’t worry. I’ll stay on the beat as this story continues to break.

1) Ten people. Maybe even twelve.

Let’s talk about the sheer madness of an NFL franchise playing in a soccer stadium. I, for one, am sincerely worried by the larger platform this grants to the inferior “football.” The word ‘soccer’ is now being said once, maybe even twice a week on national television. That’s a huge uptick.

If you don’t know, the newly-christened Los Angeles Chargers have made their temporary home in the StubHub Center, an MLS stadium in southern Cali, as they wait for their joint stadium with the Rams to finish construction. It has a 27,000 seat capacity, and the Chargers have—

Wait, wait, wait. We gotta stop right there. The average NFL stadium houses almost 72,000 people, which is almost three times bigger than where the Chargers currently play. Home-field advantage in such a small stadium can’t be real—you just can’t generate enough volume.

And, and, and! they failed to sell out the stadium in their home-opener against the Dolphins! 25,381 people. This is so sad. It’s just so sad.

There will be roughly 7 Chargers fans in attendance on Sunday.

2) Ten left guards. Maybe even twelve.

Going for it on 4th and 8? Sure. Another wide receiver screen on 3rd down? It’s gotta work at some point. Wearing a polo with a horizontal stripe smack dab in the middle, which is very unflattering to any figure? Wouldn’t be my call, but go for it, Dougie.

Rotating left guards?! That’s where I draw the line.

If we have learned anything over the years of watching Dallas’s offensive line play, it’s that the greatest strength of any trench unit is continuity. So much of what an offensive line does is predicated on timing, teamwork, and tacit understanding. Just as a quarterback develops a rapport with his receivers, the individual pieces of the offensive line unit develop a internal, nuanced style of play that magnifies their power to a height greater than the sum of its parts.

Take the right side of the line: Kelce - Brooks - Johnson. They’re playing some doggone good football, having spent a solid amount of time together since Brooks arrived and Lane returned from suspension.

I had folks tell me the heat led to the rotation of the left guard. Bollocks. I’ve never seen that happen before for just one player in my life. I had folks tell me that Warmack and Wisniewski were playing at roughly the same level. Double bollocks. Wisniewski clearly outclassed Warmack, and even the flashes we saw from Seumalo.

If Wisniewski doesn’t start/rotates, I’m calling Howie for Pederson’s job. I already know I’m a better coach—I retroactively tweet the right play calls and decisions all the time.

3) Ten sacks. Maybe even twelve.

Fletcher Cox looks like he’s a no-go this week, which kinda ruins this episode of my ten-twelve anaphora, but I’m rolling with it anyway. On one side of the field, you’ve got arguably the best EDGE duo in the nation—easy Top-3—in Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram; on the other, Brandon Graham and Vinny Curry and Derek Barnett and Timmy Jernigan and Chris Long and *deep breath* Elijah Qualls (don’t sleep!) still pose an intimidating two-deep.

The Chargers are tied for 2nd in the league with 11 sacks on the year (3.67 per game), while Philly has only 8, but you can hardly count a Giant game in which Eli Manning played hot potato with the football for four quarters. It is reasonable to expect that the two defenses combined account for around six sacks, maybe even eight.

But this post is not reasonable. It’s reckless, irresponsible, and tons of fun. So ten sacks. Who knows, maybe even...twelve?

4) Ten men on the field. Maybe even twelve.

I mean, it happens sometimes. And the refs will tell us, so.

5) Ten points on the board. Maybe even twelve.

As down as I am for Jake Elliott to come off of The 61 Shot to a four field goal performance, egads—I don’t think twelve is enough to beat these Chargers. Let’s hope this predictions fails (but the other ones definitely come true).

I like the Eagles 20-14 in an ugly road victory. Wentz has a rough road record (2-8), TD:INT ratio (11:11), and his completion percentage drops from 65 to 60. For the Eagles to solidify themselves as a legit NFC contender (which they can be, this year), Wentz must prove he can win on the road. In a stadium that won’t offer much home-field advantage, he has the chance to win his third road game ever--and second in the last three.

The Eagles have the Giants, Seahawks, and Cowboys all left on the road this season. Good teams beat bad teams on the road; great teams play good teams tough—and win a few—on the road as well.

Look for Rasul Douglas to grab pick #2 on his career—no real analysis there, I just trust a guy with 9 INTs in the last 13 games he’s started. I like Blount for 14 totes and 70 yards; Smallwood for 10 and 115, with a big TD run. Alshon could have the biggest game of his Eagle career—the tallest CB he’ll see on Sunday is 5’11—but he won’t.

Final hot take: Zach Ertz has never had a 100 yard game against a non NFC East team. Changes in LA. He hits 110, maybe even 112.

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