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Eagles record prediction for the 2021 NFL season

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NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Now that the 2021 NFL schedule is officially here, it’s time for a very serious and scientific exercise: predicting the Philadelphia Eagles’ final record by determining wins and losses on a game-by-game basis. Even though we don’t know what to fully expect from this team with a new head coach in Nick Sirianni and a new starting quarterback in Jalen Hurts.

Last year around this time, I had the Eagles “looking at a range of 9-7 through 11-5.” My prediction was clearly too optimistic considering they only finished 4-11-1! I regret not leaning more into the skepticism I had about the team.

Let’s see how things shake out this year. (Also check out even more schedule analysis in the latest BGN Radio podcast!)

Eagles 2021 Schedule

Week 1 - at Atlanta Falcons (Sept. 12, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

The Falcons might be poised to bounce back under a new coaching staff. The combination of Julio Jones (assuming he’s not traded), Calvin Ridley, and Kyle Pitts will be too much for Philly’s defense to stop. The Eagles’ struggles in Atlanta continue as the team drops their fourth straight game in the The Peach State.

LOSS: 0-1

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Falcons in Week 1?

This poll is closed

  • 50%
    Yes
    (2384 votes)
  • 49%
    No
    (2313 votes)
4697 votes total Vote Now

Week 2 - vs. San Francisco 49er (Sept. 19, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

There are those high on the 49ers bouncing back this season. I’m not as certain. Sure, San Francisco had some bad luck last year, especially in the injury department. But the quarterback position is still a big question mark for them. Keeping Jimmy Garoppolo doesn’t really make financial sense for them but it sounds like they might do it? If he does start, he’s not scaring anybody. And neither is Trey Lance and his extremely limited college experience at the FCS level. The Eagles aren’t losing their first game with fans back at the Linc. It’s going to be nuts.

WIN: 1-1

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the 49ers in Week 2?

This poll is closed

  • 55%
    Yes
    (2426 votes)
  • 44%
    No
    (1969 votes)
4395 votes total Vote Now

Week 3 - at Dallas Cowboys (Sept. 27, 8:15 PM ET, ESPN) Monday Night Football

Big opportunity for Hurts to shine in primetime. He takes advantage of the Cowboys’ defense in this shootout that goes to overtime. But it turns out that Dallas has just too much firepower for Philly’s secondary to handle. Stopping Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb, and Michael Gallup just won’t be easy.

LOSS: 1-2

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Cowboys in Week 3?

This poll is closed

  • 40%
    Yes
    (1706 votes)
  • 59%
    No
    (2521 votes)
4227 votes total Vote Now

Week 4 - vs. Kansas City Chiefs (Oct. 3, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Prior to Super Bowl LV, Patrick Mahomes had nine career losses (including playoffs). None of them came by more than one score. The Chiefs lost to the Bucs by more than one score because their offensive line was in shambles. KC has spent their offseason fixing that issue. They’ll be back in top form this season. Andy Reid advances to 3-0 against his former team.

LOSS: 1-3

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Chiefs in Week 4?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    Yes
    (269 votes)
  • 93%
    No
    (3829 votes)
4098 votes total Vote Now

Week 5 - at Carolina Panthers (Oct. 10, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

I like Matt Rhule. I really think he’s a good head coach. But, man, I really don’t love his quarterbacks. I didn’t buy Teddy Bridgewater last year and I’m not buying Sam Darnold this year. It’s not difficult to think Hurts can outshine him. With apologies to all the Jaycee Horn lovers out there, I’ve watched DeVonta Smith absolutely cook him. He’ll do that again here.

WIN: 2-3

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Panthers in Week 5?

This poll is closed

  • 86%
    Yes
    (3427 votes)
  • 13%
    No
    (555 votes)
3982 votes total Vote Now

Week 6 - vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Thursday Night Football (Oct. 14, 8:20 PM ET, FOX/NFL Network/Amazon)

Everyone will call me a hater but the Bucs objectively got lucky last year. They were the healthiest team in the league. They faced a team with a losing record in the wild card round, a dilapidated Drew Brees in the divisional round, a coward head coach in the NFC Championship Game, and a decimated Chiefs offensive line in the Super Bowl. But, hey, they’re still a quality team and they basically retained their entire championship core. They’re not going to repeat but they’re still going to be an above average team. They’ll beat the Eagles.

LOSS: 2-4

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Buccaneers in Week 6?

This poll is closed

  • 16%
    Yes
    (661 votes)
  • 83%
    No
    (3271 votes)
3932 votes total Vote Now

Week 7 - at Las Vegas Raiders (Oct. 24, 4:05 PM ET, FOX)

What many are calling the best road trip game of the year. It’s the first time the Eagles will ever play in Sin City. The Raiders themselves are a juiceless team; they’re just not particularly intriguing. Derek Carr is the exact caliber of quarterback you don’t want on your favorite team: too good to get rid of, not good enough to actually win anything meaningful. This is a coin flip for me. I’ll lean Raiders due to home field advantage.

LOSS: 2-5

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Raiders in Week 7?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    Yes
    (2657 votes)
  • 31%
    No
    (1195 votes)
3852 votes total Vote Now

Week 8 - at Detroit Lions (Oct. 31, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

I don’t feel as good about predicting the exact winner of Eagles-Raiders and Eagles-Lions as much as I feel good about predicting the Birds will split those two games. Since I had the Eagles losing in Vegas, I’ll take them to win here despite traveling for the second week in a row. I don’t think the Dan Campbell Lions are going to be as big of a joke as everyone seems to think they’ll be. And I’m wary of the Duce Staley Revenge Game. But Jared Goff just ain’t it. I’ll roll with Hurts over him. The Lions don’t exactly have a fearsome receiving corps to help him out.

WIN: 3-5

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Lions in Week 8?

This poll is closed

  • 88%
    Yes
    (3281 votes)
  • 11%
    No
    (432 votes)
3713 votes total Vote Now

Week 9 - vs. Los Angeles Chargers (Nov. 7, 4:05 PM ET, CBS)

The Bolts are my pick to win the AFC West this year. They’re going to take a big step forward. Justin Herbert had a lot of success playing behind one of the worst pass protecting offensive lines in the league last season. The Chargers wisely invested in the trenches to improve his protection. Herbert is going to light up this Eagles defense.

LOSS: 3-6

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Chargers in Week 9?

This poll is closed

  • 36%
    Yes
    (1345 votes)
  • 63%
    No
    (2308 votes)
3653 votes total Vote Now

Week 10 - at Denver Broncos (Nov. 14, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

Hard one to predict since we don’t know exactly who their quarterback will be. If it’s Drew Lock, it’s certainly winnable. If it’s Aaron Rodgers, though? Working with Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy? And Vic Fangio’s defense to boot? With the Eagles making the trip out to Denver? Yeah, that feels like a loss to me.

LOSS: 3-7

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Broncos in Week 10?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    Yes
    (2495 votes)
  • 31%
    No
    (1124 votes)
3619 votes total Vote Now

Week 11 - vs. New Orleans Saints (Nov. 21, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

Hurts get hurt for this game and Joe Flacco has to fill in. South Jersey Joe does just enough to scrape by a Saints team floundering with Jameis Winston and/or Taysom Hill under center.

WIN: 4-7

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Saints in Week 11?

This poll is closed

  • 58%
    Yes
    (2087 votes)
  • 41%
    No
    (1485 votes)
3572 votes total Vote Now

Week 12 - at New York Giants (Nov. 28, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

The Giants are out for “revenge” against the Eagles, which is dumb. But there’s no doubt Joe Judge is going to use that as a motivation tactic. The G-Men will very much be up for this game and they’ll get their much-desired win.

LOSS: 4-8

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Giants in Week 12?

This poll is closed

  • 63%
    Yes
    (2225 votes)
  • 36%
    No
    (1294 votes)
3519 votes total Vote Now

Week 13 - at New York Jets (Dec. 5, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

J-E-T-S? More like J-E-S-T. Gottem. The Eagles have NEVER lost to the Jets in NFL history. Philly is a perfect 11-0 against their neighbors to the northeast. That doesn’t mean they can’t lose to them this time but I’m not about to start predicting otherwise. I like Robert Saleh but Zach Wilson has much to prove.

WIN: 5-8

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Jets in Week 13?

This poll is closed

  • 92%
    Yes
    (3211 votes)
  • 7%
    No
    (243 votes)
3454 votes total Vote Now

Week 14 - BYE

The latest possible regular season bye week there is.

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the bye in Week 14?

This poll is closed

  • 52%
    Yes
    (1769 votes)
  • 47%
    No
    (1600 votes)
3369 votes total Vote Now

Week 15 - vs. Washington Football Team (Dec. 18 or Dec. 19, TBD)

I’m guessing this game will be featured on Saturday (18th) if it matters or lost in the Sunday shuffle (19th) if it doesn’t. I’m leaning towards the latter, though the NFC East might be bad across the board again. No one should mistake Washington for Super Bowl contenders but they’ll be a respectable regular season squad. And we know Ryan Fitzpatrick torches the Eagles, though maybe that was just a Jim Schwartz issue. In any case, I have the Birds dropping this one at home.

LOSS: 5-9

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Football Team in Week 15?

This poll is closed

  • 56%
    Yes
    (1911 votes)
  • 43%
    No
    (1461 votes)
3372 votes total Vote Now

Week 16 - vs. New York Giants (Dec. 26, 1:00 PM, FOX)

I don’t care how bad the Eagles might be; they’re not getting swept by a team that they historically own. Daniel Jones’ fumble issues help the Eagles secure a win over Big Blue at home.

WIN: 6-9

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Giants in Week 16?

This poll is closed

  • 79%
    Yes
    (2692 votes)
  • 20%
    No
    (682 votes)
3374 votes total Vote Now

Week 17 - at Washington Football Team (Jan. 2, 1:00 PM, FOX)

We all know Fitzpatrick can get red hot. We should also acknowledge that he can go ice cold. That’s exactly what happens in this spot as the Eagles fight to make their final game of the season meaningful. A large contingent of midnight green is bound to travel down to FedEx Field to give the Eagles a decent home field advantage on the road.

WIN: 7-9

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Football Team in Week 17?

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    Yes
    (1796 votes)
  • 45%
    No
    (1502 votes)
3298 votes total Vote Now

Week 18 - vs. Dallas Cowboys (Jan. 9, 1:00 PM, FOX)

In a parallel to the Eagles’ last “First-year head coach” season in 2016, Philly ends the year with a mini win streak against NFC East teams. The Eagles miss out on making the playoffs but they help to spoil the Cowboys’ playoff chances by helping Washington become the first time to repeat as NFC East champions since 2004.

WIN: 8-9

Poll

Will the Eagles beat the Cowboys in Week 18?

This poll is closed

  • 65%
    Yes
    (2178 votes)
  • 34%
    No
    (1127 votes)
3305 votes total Vote Now

...

Final record: 8-9

I think the Eagles are looking at a range between 6-11 and 8-9. I might be overestimating their floor there, too. But, what can I say, you guys know I’m a relentless optimist!

It’s not hard to envision how this season could go poorly. The roster was bad last year and it’s not like wholesale changes were made in terms of talent. Hurts might belong in the conversation for one of the worst starting quarterbacks in the league. Sirianni might be out of his depth as he’s surrounded by one of the NFL’s youngest coaching staffs. The offensive line could struggle to stay healthy once again. The secondary seems entirely vulnerable considering there’s no clear CB2 in the picture right now.

But maybe I’m being too negative? I mean, I’ve never been accused of that before. Maybe Sirianni helps to rejuvenate the team. Maybe Hurts flourishes. Maybe the Eagles investing in the trenches pays off and they defy expectations. Even in a realistic best case scenario for this season, though, I still think they’re only maxing out around 9 or 10 wins.

It’s really not the end of the world if the Eagles finish with a poor record this season. As much as people don’t like to hear it, they’re just not seriously competing for a Super Bowl this season. Jeffrey Lurie told us as much after the season by admitting this team needs a retooling.

The hope is the Eagles can show enough positives in 2021 to build on next offseason as they have more cap space and three potential first-round picks to work with. A strong performance by Howie Roseman could have the Birds realistically challenging for a title again in 2022.

Poll

What’s your record prediction for the 2021 Eagles?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    12-5 or better
    (192 votes)
  • 4%
    11-6
    (202 votes)
  • 12%
    10-7
    (607 votes)
  • 16%
    9-8
    (829 votes)
  • 9%
    8-9
    (472 votes)
  • 19%
    7-10
    (972 votes)
  • 16%
    6-11
    (824 votes)
  • 17%
    5-12 or worse
    (878 votes)
4976 votes total Vote Now