How many predicted that Nick Foles would lead the Philadelphia Eagles to Super Bowl 52? I imagine many experts picked the Eagles to go to the Super Bowl, but behind the play of Carson Wentz. Nick Foles is no joke and he is primed to lead this team to victory on Sunday thanks to Doug Pederson.
This Eagles team is primed to take down the Patriots and I’ll show you why below.
The Eagles Defensive Line
Philly’s defensive front is the best in the National Football League. Not only does the defensive line get penetration on the quarterback, they excel at stopping the run.
— Brian Baldinger (@BaldyNFL) January 25, 2018
They continually did this against top caliber NFL offensive lines. Here are two videos of them against the almighty Dallas Cowboys and Oakland Raiders.
Shot 3 – The adjustment the #Eagles made to #Raiders 13 personnel set was the use of a heavy 4-4 defense…4 DL and 4 LBs on the field. Was very effective for them late in the game when they needed to stop the run on multiple occasions pic.twitter.com/aVky0Z8WBY
— Fran Duffy (@fduffy3) December 26, 2017
Shot 6 – #Eagles defense was really impressive with a lot of backups playing vs Dallas. Ton of players standing out here. Beau Allen, Elijah Qualls, Najee Goode, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Vinny Curry, and others all making plays #FlyEaglesFly pic.twitter.com/Dy3cOtF3sc
— Fran Duffy (@fduffy3) January 2, 2018
Additionally, it helps that the Eagles have one of the top interior defensive linemen in the NFL.
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) January 29, 2018
The Eagles Offensive Line
Seriously. The Eagles will control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the football. According to Pro Football Focus, the Eagles had the best offensive line in the NFL during the regular season.
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) January 24, 2018
They are one of the most athletic offensive lines and when that’s combined with their unique and creative blocking scheme, you’ve created a juggernaut. One of the reasons they change their blocking “looks” is to create confusion along the opposing defensive line.
— Brian Baldinger (@BaldyNFL) January 23, 2018
Most importantly, they block well in space.
— Justin Grasso (@JGrasso_) January 15, 2018
Not to mention, the Patriots will have to defend the RPO (Run/Pass Option).
— Brian Baldinger (@BaldyNFL) January 26, 2018
The Offensive Creativity of Doug Pederson
One of Pederson’s favorite play calls is the RPO – and the Eagles execute it to perfection.
Most RPOs run in the regular season: Eagles (181)
Fewest RPOs faced in the regular season: Patriots (39)
I think there might be a theme to Patriots practices this week.
— Zoltán Buday (@PFF_Zoltan) January 29, 2018
The game plan has not changed much since Wentz was injured. Sure, the Eagles don’t attack down the field as often as they did with Wentz but don’t kid yourself into thinking he can’t sling it deep. Just ask the Vikings (and my Falcons).
— Culler Sports (@CullerSports) January 22, 2018
Below, the Vikings stack the box with ten defenders in the screen. There is one on one coverage up top with Jeffery. Pederson has Agholor sprint wide to open up the middle of the field for a short, quick, rhythmic throw for Nick Foles.
Again, here they are causing confusion.
Shot 4 – #Eagles offense was great in the red zone on Sunday vs the #Vikings, and they score here on a concept they’ve run a number of times to Zach Ertz this year. This time it goes to Alshon Jeffery for six points #FlyEaglesFly pic.twitter.com/YzOMOvgEP4
— Fran Duffy (@fduffy3) January 22, 2018
Beautifully designed and executed even better.
Up and down the roster, there are only a few positions that the Patriots have it better than the Eagles – mainly the tight end and quarterback. However, how many times has this been said before?
No one is better with time (two weeks) than the combination of Belichick and Brady and that is something that cannot be ignored. The Patriots will come prepared and will find the Eagles weakness with hopes of exploiting it. Belichick will try to make Nick Foles uncomfortable and make him beat them with his arm. And to be completely honest, I’m not convinced Carson Wentz plays better against the Vikings than Nick Foles did.
But Belichick will take his chances in making him do it again in Super Bowl 52.