What They’re Saying About the Eagles
SI.com’s Peter King has the Eagles taking a 33-16 victory:
It’s not hopeless for the Brownies, but if they lose Joe Haden to a four-game suspension, it just might be. Most important thing for the Eagles this week: Keeping Mike Vick upright. The Ravens, Giants and Steelers are on the docket in three of the next four weeks.
Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com predicts a 27-10 Birds win:
The Browns will start rookie Brandon Weeden against the Eagles. That’s tough against a good defense. He doesn’t have a lot of weapons, so he will be challenged to make plays. On the other side, Mike Vick was banged up in the preseason, but he is ready to go. The Eagles have too much speed outside for the Browns.
Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com likes the Eagles to win the division with a 10-6 record:
I’m buying the Philadelphia pieces coming together. They are a rare group that should have a top-ten offense and defense. The Giants’ defensive line actually lacks depth, especially if Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora start to show their age.
Mike Tanier of SportsOnEarth.com picks the Eagles, 30-10:
If you thought the Eagles roster was a disorganized jumble of mismatching parts, wait until you get a look at their minor-league affiliate. The Browns, assembled by ex-Eagles GM Tom Heckert and coached by Andy Reid protégés Pat Shurmur and Brad Childress, have a roster full of cast-offs and has-beens from the big-league team, including Sheldon Brown, Juqua Parker and Dimitri Patterson.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld.com picks the Eagles, 27-3:
The Browns’ defensive strength is secondary play, but not to the extent that they can stop one of the league’s most lethal passing attacks. Michael Vick and Jeremy Maclin should have their way with 33-year-old RCB Sheldon Brown down the left sideline Sunday, using play-action fakes to McCoy to set up vertical connections. Look for DeSean Jackson to spend most of this game in LCB Joe Haden’s man coverage, while Jason Avant tries to fight off Dimitri Patterson in the slot.
Dan Graziano of ESPN.com writes that avoiding turnovers will be key for the Eagles against inferior opponents:
If you want to lose to inferior teams, turnovers are the surest way. Watch the turnovers in Cleveland. If the Eagles commit a lot of them, the game could be much closer than most expect it to be. Working in Philadelphia’s favor is that the Browns forced only 20 turnovers in 2011. Only seven teams forced fewer.
Albert Breer of NFL.com has the Eagles in a 34-13 victory:
Plenty of big talk out of Philly this offseason, and Mike Vick told me this week that his bravado is by design: “I think it motivates everybody to play at a certain level.” That level should be a high one Sunday.
Michael Rosenberg of SI.com has Michael Vick ranked third, ahead of only RGIII, among NFC East quarterbacks:
WHAT I WOULD THINK IF I WERE AN EAGLES FAN: I have to get all my Michael Vick Super Bowl hopes and dreams out now because he always gets hurt.
Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com has his eye on Brandon Weeden against the Eagles’ pass rush:
The Eagles’ front didn’t just get to the Browns’ rookie signal-caller, they knocked the ball out of his hands on two different occasions. For Cleveland to have a chance this Sunday, Weeden must protect the football when defenders bear down on him. I guarantee the Eagles will be instructed to slap, pull or punch the ball out of Weeden’s hands every single time they get within arms reach of the Browns’ green QB.
Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk predicts a 35-20 Eagles victory. Michael David Smith of PFT thinks it’ll be 17-7:
I’m not sold on the Eagles, but I am sold on the Browns — sold on the idea that they’re the worst team in the league this year. It’s going to be a rough season in Cleveland.
All 12 ESPN.com writers pick the Eagles to beat the Browns.
Bill Simmons of Grantland.com has the Eagles covering the 9.5-point spread:
Who else is excited for the GABW (Gambling Against Brandon Weeden) era? It’s like the Browns are mailing wads of $100 bills to our houses for the entire month of September. The lesson, as always …
All eight CBSSports.com writers go with the Eagles.
The Eagles gave wide receiver B.J. Cunningham a little bump to join their practice squad, according to Brian McIntyre of NFL.com.
Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.