The Eagles successfully held off the Patriots offense in the 4th Quarter of the Week 1 season opener.
Forcing 2 Punts, 3 Turnovers on downs, and only allowing 7 points during the entire second half.
An impressive showing for a new Eagles defense, while the offense was inconsistent and slow to start, with 3 Field Goals, a Fumble, and 1 Turnover on downs late in the 4th.
It’s safe to say the Eagles’ defense showed up when it mattered in Week 1.
This might not be the case for Tonight’s game, and it could be time for the offense to show us what they can truly get done.
Return of the Injuries
The Eagles had some key players on defense make big stops on Sunday, including Cox & Reddick 4th down pressure on Mac Jones.
Unfortunately, Fletcher Cox might be limited in his Week 2 appearance with a rib injury, joining 2 others with a similar complication.
If Wednesday’s injury report should cause any type of concern, it should be about the defense. Losing James Bradberry, Nakobe Dean(IR), and Reed Blankenship in one week isn’t best best-case scenario for the birds, with Josh Jobe and Nicholas Morrow being the replacements for Bradberry and Dean. Rookie Sydney Brown will most likely see the start in place of Blankenship.
With a struggling DB room up against one of the best receivers in the game, expect to see a pass-heavy Vikings offense that might work out for both teams.
No Running Back Woes
The Eagles might be without Running Back Kenny Gainwell, but they’ve got solutions for this problem. Even if Rashaad Penny finds himself as a healthy inactive come game time, the Eagles barely put Boston Scott and D’Andre Swift to work on Sunday. A combined 2 carries and 3 targets for Swift and Scott wasn’t a great start to the season. Expect to see both of them more involved with tonight’s offensive game plan.
Hopefully, with more adjustments to the Vikings’ defense, with the lack of a weather excuse heading into tonight’s game.
Defensive Line Takeover
During Sunday’s game against the Patriots, the Pats were without starting Guards Mike Onwenu and Cole Strange. Missing 2 key pieces on the offensive line felt like an obvious win for the Eagles defensive line. That was until Mac Jones was getting the ball out in 2.90 seconds and as quickly as 1.35 seconds on the Patriots screen-filled game plan. Of course, Jordan Davis and Jalen Carter still came up big, combining for the Eagles’ 1.5 Sacks and a Forced Fumble early in the game.
The Buccaneers were able to get their work in on Kirk Cousins Sunday, including 2 Fumbles, an Interception, and 1 Sack. The Eagles defense should be able to replicate some of these numbers with their stronger pass rush if Jalen Carter is able to stay consistent with his league-high 8 Pressures.
Approaching week 2, the Vikings injury report also revealed some interesting news. Tonight, the Vikings will be without C Garrett Bradbury, and pending updates might see limited use from OT Christian Darrisaw and DE Marcus Davenport. Without 2 starting offensive linemen, this will give the Eagles defensive line another opportunity to completely dominate one side of the ball, but are they up to the task?
Shutting Down Jefferson
Have you heard of him? With almost 5,000 career yards in 51 games, the Eagles’ biggest issue tonight will be to shut down Vikings WR1.
Jefferson had 150 yards in the Vikings season opener, and he could look to repeat that tonight.
Thankfully, Darius Slay has already gone head-to-head against Jefferson. Remember that Week 2 Home Opener against the Vikings last season? Jefferson had 6 receptions on 12 targets for only 48 yards. Slay also posted 2 Interceptions and almost a third; watch his 2022 Week 2 highlight here.
With kickoff still 4 hours away, what do you think are some keys to securing an Eagles victory?