The Philadelphia Eagles will start the second half of the 2020 season Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium against the New York Giants. Fans are looking for more consistency out of the team who, despite a 3-4-1 record, lead an atrocious NFC East.
What looked like a certain win when the schedule first dropped looms as a very important game (Eagles vs Giants), as the Eagles attempt to be the division’s first repeat champ in over 15 years. New York’s win over Washington keeps them in the hunt at 2-7. Also, the G Men have looked at times like an improving team, taking Philly and Tampa to the final seconds of close primetime losses.]
So what can we expect out of the bye? The Eagles aren’t a great team after a week off. Under Doug Pederson, they are 1-3 overall and against the spread. Philly opened 3-point favorites on the road and as of Tuesday morning, the lines at most NJ sports betting apps appear to be holding steady.
2020 Inconsistency in the NFL
The 2020 Eagles are part of a league-wide trend of maddening inconsistency. Week to week, this has become a very difficult sport to handicap. After seven weeks of futility and losing to the number, the Cowboys covered at home against undefeated Pittsburgh but blew a second-half lead in defeat.
The biggest concern entering Sunday and the season’s second half is if Carson Wentz can clean up the slow starts and myriad mistakes. The Eagles QB currently leads the league with 14 total turnovers. While he has again worked with new faces and a weak offensive line, the ill-advised throws, and fumbles while being sacked belie his five years of experience and marquee contract.
The gutsy plays and spectacular throws haven’t outweighed his Brett Farve-like recklessness at times.
Two big pieces should come back to the huddle on Sunday.
- One is lead back Miles Sanders, while the other is stalwart right tackle Lane Johnson.
- The latter may be more important to Wentz’ psyche.
- Wentz always seems more comfortable and the team plays better record-wise with 65 on the line.
Sanders’ return should help the team take some burden off Wentz. The second-year back averages over 85 yards per game from scrimmage and has seen more carries this year.
As much as Pederson wants to throw, it’s getting colder and the Meadowlands favors ground games. If Johnson returning moves Jason Peters inside, that gives the Eagles more power to run and control the clock.
Sanders popped a long run against Baltimore and he can provide that threat while rotating with Boston Scott. That also forces safeties to come down in the box and opens up single coverage for receivers and tight ends.
The defense should attempt to build on the confidence earned in the win against Dallas. Yes, they were playing a rookie who dropped down to FCS James Madison in college but they scored a touchdown and didn’t allow Dallas’ loaded skill positions to do so.
Eagles vs Giants
Daniel Jones has seven passing TDs in the last four games after none in the prior four. He seems to play better at Metlife. While he threw no interceptions in Sunday’s win, he did have two fumbles, neither leading to turnovers. The Eagles defense pressured him consistently and forced mistakes, including the strip-sack that ended the game.
Sunday will be the last in a three-game stretch of divisional play. The defense will need a good performance to build confidence as the next four games feature four excellent QBs, including three Super Bowl champs.
The Eagles need to start the second half on the right foot. Their first win in a day game against a divisional rival would be a good beginning before a stretch of playoff contenders (all 5-3 or better entering Week 10) shows if the divisional championship means they could ACTUALLY do anything in the postseason.