Week 1 is officially in the books, and the Eagles managed to start the season with a win, but it wasn’t as pretty as fans were hoping, given last season’s Super Bowl appearance.
But there have been some big changes in the offseason, with new offensive and defensive coordinators looking to mix up the system and bring the Eagles a title this year, which undoubtedly has caused some disruption to the start of the year.
So let’s break down game one and look at why, even after a win in week one, most sports betting websites in the US still have the Eagles behind the 0-1 Chiefs to win the Super Bowl.
Starting the year off with a 70-yard pick-6, Darius Slay was a bright spot in the Eagles’ defense and never really missed a beat all game. Plus, a forced fumble by Jordan Davis, who needed to be a presence in stopping the run, and subsequent recovery by Zach Cunningham on the next offensive snap went a long way to helping the Eagles beat the Patriots during Tom Brady’s ceremony in New England.
While they usually say the best defense is a good offense, the 14 points scored from defensive turnovers seem to say the opposite in this recent matchup, and while most fans may have hoped for more than two sacks, the solid D ended up holding firm in tricky weather conditions even with a late surge from the Pats.
It was a relief to see the defense able to bail out offensive mistakes, especially Hurts’ late fumble that needed a 4th down stand and a couple of sacks in the last two Patriots’ drives to keep them off the scoreboard and seal the win.
Considering how electric the Philadelphia offense looked last year, 4.1 yards per play just felt a bit pedestrian and underwhelming, especially with Jalen Hurts already used to throwing the ball to AJ Brown and DaVonta Smith. While they each managed to snag the ball seven times, they were both held to under 100 yards each.
Kenneth Gainwell took charge as the lead back for Philly and was actually given the chance to run the ball more than once, with a few receptions added on top of 54 yards on the ground.
Even with a nice TD pass to put them up 16-0 in the first quarter, there wasn’t enough offense to get the Birds back into the endzone, so it came down to the leg of Jake Elliot to bring home the win. 4/4 on-field goals with two kicks from beyond 50 yards is gróod in any weather, but in the wet, it was even more impressive. But at least he was perfect after missing an extra point in the first quarter.
‘Resilience’ was the word of the day from Jalen Hurts, and that pretty much sums up the first game of the season. It wasn’t an easy win after going up by 16 in the first quarter, and it wasn’t a shootout that can make games nail-biters to the last seconds.
But it was a win.
And going into week two hosting the Minnesota Vikings, who are looking to prove they should be taken seriously, the confidence mixed with a desire to be better will certainly fuel the stars and players wanting to prove themselves to turn up ready to play next week.