What They’re Saying About the Eagles

Here’s a roundup of what the national media are saying about Eagles-Redskins.

Peter Schrager of FoxSports.com likes the Eagles in a 34-23 victory:

Sunday will mark 364 days since Nick Foles’ first career start. His opponent that week in 2012? Oh, the same opponent as this week. Quick. If you were to pick a second-year quarterback to lead your team over the next eight weeks, would you go with Robert Griffin III or Foles? The fact that’s not an easy answer says all you need to know about the latter.

ESPN.com’s John Clayton likes what he’s seen from the Eagles lately:

Nick Foles is forced to run a different version of Chip Kelly’s offense than Michael Vick because he’s not a great runner. When Foles runs the read-option, defenses don’t worry about his running like they do Vick, who often burns opponents for 20-plus-yard runs. Where Foles has succeeded in the scheme is in making quick decisions. In the past two games, he has seven touchdown passes on balls thrown at least 15 yards, bringing his season totals to 16 touchdown passes and no interceptions. Plus, somehow, the Philadelphia Eagles climbed back into the playoff race. Despite a winless record at home, the Eagles are 5-5 and tied with the Dallas Cowboys for first place in the NFC East.

Elliot Harrison of NFL.com predicts a 26-22 Eagles victory:

We don’t trust the Redskins on the road this week, but we are exhibiting trust in Nick Foles. Yes, his stat line last Sunday looked better than the reality, but that’s the way it goes. Sometimes, you hit a receiver in the chest, the ball bounces off and you find yourself chasing down a pick-six; other times, you underthrow a guy and get a score. By and large, Foles has been solid this season, save for a really bad outing versus Dallas. As for Washington, if I’m coach Mike Shanahan, I’m running the football as much as possible. That’s the Redskins’ bread and butter. Get Robert Griffin III out in space and make the Eagles play 11-on-11, not 11-on-10. Also, be aware that Alfred Morris, who is averaging well over 5 yards per carry, is having a top-notch season; force that Philly front seven to play physical.

Peter King of TheMMQB.com likes the Eagles to win the NFC East:

If the Giants can beat Scott Tolzien (is that a serious question?) and RG3 can best Nick Foles (a dubious proposition), this division will be two things: ridiculously mediocre and anyone’s playoff berth. One team (Dallas) would be 5-5, one (Philly) would be 5-6, and the other two would be 4-6. Checking the slate down the stretch, I like Philly to win it and be the NFC’s fourth playoff seed, win or lose against Washington.

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk goes with a 30-20 Eagles win:

The Eagles haven’t won at home since September 30, 2012. And yet they’re 5-5. The Redskins are 3-6 for the second straight year. And yet they think they can once again turn things around. More importantly, the third-round pick from 2012 is currently looking a lot better than the second overall selection from last year.

Mike Tanier of Sports On Earth has the Eagles, 31-24:

Reasons To Name Foles the Starter

Sixteen touchdowns and zero interceptions.

He’s the best Eagles quarterback right now and only viable “quarterback of the future” on the roster. (Sorry, Matt Barkley, but that was ugly.)

If he goes into a slump and fails utterly, the Eagles can draft a quarterback and start over without splurging on a new contract. If he’s benched, he could evolve into some mythic hero with a huge price tag and unreal expectations (see Brian Hoyer, Browns).

Common freakin’ sense.

Doug Farrar of SI.com offers his take:

The Redskins will be looking for revenge against a Philly team that took their defense apart in Chip Kelly’s NFL coaching debut. Washington closed that loss to a 33-27 margin after trailing 33-7 in the third quarter. Problem is the Redskins haven’t proven able to stop any offense, and the Eagles still lead the league in explosive plays.

Josh Katzowitz of CBSSports.com goes with the Redskins:

Of the eight CBSSports.com experts who picked this game, only one went with Washington. And you’re reading his words right now. What we’ve got here is a case of two solid offenses going against two deplorable defenses. The Redskins have been a big disappointment this season, while the Eagles streaks and stretches have made them an actual contender for the NFC East title (they’re tied for first, but in reality, Washington is only two games back). But Philadelphia is terrible at home. So, I go with Washington.

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  • Tyler Phillips

    I like that the guy that picked Washington still think that our D is awful. Its not great, but it is much better than Washington’s. Better O plus Better D plus Better ST= the Eagles 1st home win in 11 tries.

    • Always Hopeful

      It’s always funny to see people who don’t follow the team closely make statements about the team. I know it’s nature of the beast, but do they watch the games besides highlights or just look at stats?

      “Better O plus Better D plus Better ST = the Eagles 1st home win in 11 tries”


    • Explorer51

      They have to be looking at that YPG stat that has the Birds ranked 31st; I understand why the NFL charts that but I don’t understand why PPG isn’t the Gold Standard for a D. Last time I looked, points determined W’s and L’s not yards.

      • UKEagle99

        Totally agree.

      • James

        Yeah, YPG doesn’t really work as far as the Eagles are concerned. The offense is so fast that they’re off the field quickly even if they score. The opposing team gets extra drives so they can rack up the yards even with short drives.

        A Redskin fan posted a stat about how the Skins often win if Morris gets 20 carries or more. He probably will get 20, but not necessarily because the Redskins are building long drives.

  • BlindChow

    “When Foles runs the read-option, defenses don’t worry about his running
    like they do Vick, who often burns opponents for 20-plus-yard runs.”

    While there’s obviously a difference in big play ability on the ground, I think defenses absolutely will start worring about Foles running. He broke off a 16-yarder against Green Bay, and he iced the game on a 9-yard run (Sheil would call this a “scamper”). He actually averages more yards per carry (3.6) than quite a few #1 running backs (Green-Ellis, Doug Martin, Mendenhall, MJD, Trent Richardson, Ray Rice…). Obviously, fewer carries, but you don’t want to give up 4 yards per attempt to anyone.

    • Take away his 6 kneeldowns and that YPC goes up considerably.

    • Always Hopeful

      Good point BC. We just need functional 3-4 yard runs from Foles, and he has shown that he can deliver those…sometimes even longer runs!

    • evanphilly

      I would love the opposing D to start worrying about Foles and his ability to ‘run’. Would make McCoy’s job a heck of a lot easier.

    • Engwrite

      I think the key are third downs, with 2, 3 yards to go. Unlike past years the Eagles are as likely to run as pass (except near the goal line) and with the whole defense keeping an eye on McCoy, a couple thrid down conversions by Foles will help McCoy and the team.

  • BleedGreenJames

    This is the first “What They’re Saying About the Eagles” I’ve read in a while that didn’t feel like someone was stabbing me in the brain.

  • jon h

    seems like these guys look at the aggregate of the numbers rather than the more important statistics or the more recent one. I love Peter S.’s comments – I think that really nails it for me.

  • reb

    Playoffs?! You’re talking about *playoffs?!*

    Happily bizarre to believe that playoffs are even a possible reality at this point. Chip brings the hope!

  • Joe

    So I log onto espn.com to check their picks for the game and what do I see? Good ole Merril Hoge picks the Redskins. I swear an Eagles fan slashed his tires after a game or something because he hates the Eagles. I looked back to check his other picks for the Eagles games – he had them going 3-7 up to now. I just don’t get his Eagles hatred.

    • Dr Rick

      Merril is just kinda a hater about a lot of things.

    • BlindChow

      Maybe they’ve just disappointed him one too many times.

    • Bdawk20

      Been this way for at least a decade too. Someone on the Eagles must have taken his wife for a nice seafood dinner and not called her again.

  • Will

    :Foles,Foles,Foles,Foles,Foles,Go EAGLES!!!

    • G_WallyHunter

      GEAGLE don’t let us down, get the chant going

  • Engwrite

    This is a key game and it makes me nervous. Beating Washington and the home field jinx will go a long way toward establishing team legitimacy. But, Foles’ previous key game (for personal reasons, ie., earning the starting position) was Dallas. Are key games an issue for him? Was it a once in a blue moon? Was he on something? Obviously the Offense depends on him.

    Then there is the Defense. It has improved enormously or has it? The points are less but the yards remain out of sight, so which is it?

    By rights the Eagles should win, even if both Offenses prove unstoppable. With DeSean returning punts and Boykin returning kick-offs, this may finally be the game one of them scores a TD on STs and that wins the game.

  • Token

    Another chance here for Foles to take a step. A division game at home. Im hoping to not see a repeat of the Dallas meltdown.

  • Token

    According to Jeff McLane the Eagles are starting Peters and not playing Fletcher.

    Ugh… A gimped Peters is worse than a healthy Barbre, sorry I know that stings your ears.

    And looks like the Eagles will need 2 starting corners going forward. I like what Fletch has done, but the guy is just injury prone. Always has been. Doesnt matter how good you play, if you miss a bunch of time you cant be relied apon to be a starter. Thats why he washed out with the Rams.

    Didnt Kelly say he though Fletch would player LAST week? Hope McLanes info is just wrong.

    I think this is gonna be a tough one. No Wolff or Fletch. I think the Skins are certainly gonna put points up. Its gonna be on Foles back to match I expect.

  • Jerry Pomroy

    On D hoping Ryans, Acho & Goode can contain Morris & RG3 & the secondary can keep the plays in front of them.

    On O, need Foles & company to put up points & take full advantage of a terrible Redskins D. An early fake to Shady, then going deep over top to DJax/Coop would help set an early tone.

    STs may need to be the difference maker giving us short fields to work with & making the Redskins O work themselves the length of the field as much as possible. A long return or two would be nice, a return for a TD even better.