It’s been quite some time since the Eagles last faced Denver.
The year was 2017. The Birds were on the path to the Super Bowl as they blew out the Broncos in Jay Ajayi’s debut, 51 to 23.
It’s been even longer since the Eagles played at Mile High.
The year was 2013. The Broncos benefited from Peyton Manning lighting up Philly’s defense in Chip Kelly’s fourth game as an NFL head coach.
The commonality from those matchups is that the winning side felt really good about having their sure-fire answer under center; Manning for the Broncos and Carson Wentz for the Eagles.
The quarterbacks in this week’s game, though? They’re standing on much less solid ground. There’s no guarantee Jalen Hurts will be back with Philly in 2022. Nor Teddy Bridgewater returning to Denver next season. They haven’t been terrible. But they haven’t exactly been great, either.
The level of uncertainty about their respective futures brings a level of uncertainty to this week’s battle between the Eagles and Broncos. Which team has the edge at at the most important position?
If gambling odds are any indication, the matchup is relatively even. The Eagles are standard three-point road underdogs in Denver, according to DraftKings Sportbook.
This despite the Broncos coming off the best performance of their 2021 season. As you’re well aware, Denver destroyed Dallas at AT&T Stadium in Week 9. The final score looked closer than the game really was because the Cowboys put up some meaningless garbage time production.
So, does that win mean the Broncos have hit their stride and are about to go on a run? Eh. It’s hard to be so sure. There’s a reason the Cowboys game was Denver’s most impressive win by far; their other four victories came over the Giants, the Jaguars, the Jets, and the Football Team. They’re all easily bottom 10 teams in the NFL.
Of course, it’s not like the Eagles are an amazing group sitting at 3-6.
Bridgewater isn’t exactly a quarterback who leaves one shaking in their boots but he might be able to take advantage of an Eagles defense that’s regularly allowing quarterbacks to go over 80% completion. Bridgewater actually ranks sixth in the league in adjusted completion rate at 78.5%.
As for the Eagles’ offense, they’re set to take on the toughest rush defense they’ve faced since really committing to running the ball over the past few weeks. Denver ranks tied for 11th in opponent yards per rush attempting at 4.2. If Vic Fangio, considered to be one of the NFL’s best defensive minds, sells out to stop the run, there’s going to be pressure on Jalen Hurts to carry the offense with his arm. And that’s not exactly something the second-year quarterback has been able to do to this point in his career.
The Eagles could be in store for a back-and-forth battle on Sunday, not totally unlike last week’s game against the Chargers. Are you betting on the Birds?
Which bet do you like more?
This poll is closed