ANALYSIS: Green Bay Packers vs. Philadelphia Eagles Preview


Photo credit/ Courtesy Philadelphia Eagles Official Facebook Page

Staff Writer Nick Ferraro says today’s Packers game will not pretty for Eagles fans.

Nick Ferraro, Staff Writer

After an exhausting season of being a devoted Eagles fan, it just gets more difficult. The (3-7-1) Eagles head to Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin to face the (8-3) Packers. A recipe for disaster if you ask me. A beautiful recipe for disaster if you were to ask me.

The game will be a rather chilly one sitting around the mid-30s for most of the 4:25 p.m. game. Unfortunately, the weather will be the least of Philadelphia’s worries on their road trip. The game at the famous field may in fact be hard to watch. The outcome is more than likely going to be in the Packers’ favor as they want to maintain a strong lead atop the NFC North.

The Eagles are still a close half-game back in the NFC East. The team still trudges headfirst into the most difficult part of their schedule. As they visit the Packers, let us take a visit down memory lane for my sake to the last time Philadelphia met Green Bay.

In week four last season, the Eagles met the Packers at Lambeau. That night fans were treated to a miracle where not only did they win, but Carson Wentz did not have a single turnover. The Eagles also ran the ball too! All three of these items have become rare this season but one can only hope they replicate their performance of last year.

Now that I have finished my rose-colored glasses rewind, I am thrust back into reality without any traces of happiness. I’m going to be honest, this game is going to be ugly on Sunday. Where I was holding onto dissipating hope during the last few games I have now realized that there isn’t much hope left in me. The Eagles will lose on Sunday. And while that statement hurts to say I know in my heart of hearts it is the truth.

However, there are three items that I will be intently focusing on during the game. While the immediate future looks bleak for the Birds, I want to take a look at some of the key factors of our team.

Darius Slay vs. Devante Adams

This is a critical matchup for me. Last week against Seattle our star corner had all the trouble in the world with Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf. Metcalf is a rising star in this league no doubt about it, but Adams is undoubtedly one of the top three receivers in the league. He is on a six-game touchdown streak heading into the Philadelphia game and I imagine he makes it seven.

Frankly, Darius Slay’s play has dropped since being signed. Not recording a single interception this season, something he hasn’t done since his rookie season. He is also allowing a 72% completion percentage against the receiver he covers. Going back to last year with Detroit, he allowed 55%, which is quite an eye-popping difference.

Slay and Adams have met several times previously thanks to Slay’s tenure on the Lions. This is notable because each time, Adams burns Slay for a touchdown and over 90 yards on the day. I want to see what our big free-agent signing has to offer coming off of his abysmal performance last week.

Jalen Hurts Dilemma

This isn’t the headline but I am more than interested to see what happens with the quarterback spot this week. Last week before taking the field against the Seahawks, reports came out that signaled for Jalen Hurts to receive far more snaps than ever. He had two.

The second-round pick that was talked about all offseason about how he will shake up the team and provide a different option was once again regulated to less than five snaps. This week the question remains of how much more reps will the Heisman runner-up receive.

I am hoping for one full chance at a drive. The Eagles keep thrusting him into awkward positions, allowing him to use his legs but rarely his arm talent. I feel that with nothing to lose, Pederson should give the reins to Hurts for a drive and just see what happens.

No harm no foul. It is hard to believe that a team would spend a second-round pick on a player they hardly use but that is exactly what this Eagles front office has done. I think this drive will give some life to fans or take away their expectations just a bit regarding the second-round pick.

Pederson’s Play Calling

This is an obvious one given my previous article which begged for the firing of the Superbowl winning head coach. But their play-calling since then has been far below expectation. While the roster is limited, his use of what he has is hopeless for a championship run. I think he relies heavily on screenplays or launches the ball deep. His bailing of the run game also accounts for the offensive’s dreadful performance.

This week I am trying things if I am Pederson. I am giving Hurts an entire drive to see how my second-round pick does in a live game. I am working on new plays to utilize Jalen Reagor’s speed to get himself open, rather than a screen pass to him and having him run for the yards. I am giving the ball to Miles Saunders 15 times and Boston Scott 10 times. The running backs deserve their yards.

Finally, I am giving Carson Wentz more roll out plays rather than forcing drop backs each and every down. Pederson has to try plays outside of his norm, and these risks may not pay off but at least you know you tried something different.

This game will not be fun to watch from the perspective of an Eagles fan. Maybe by some miracle, they will win but with our lack of offense and poor decision-making, I imagine this one will sting. To any fans reading this, I hope you try to find some solace in the fact that we will get a top 10 pick in the draft.

Final Prediction: Green Bay Packers 38-20 Philadelphia Eagles

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