The Philadelphia Eagles will take on the New Orleans Saints at home this week following a 14-point loss to the Green Bay Packers last week.
The Eagles are on a four-game losing streak, while the Saints have won nine games in a row. The Saints hold the No. 1 spot in the NFC, while the Eagles are struggling to stay in the playoff picture.
The Eagles have yet to score 30 or more points in a game this season. The only other team to not register a 30-point game is the New York Jets.
The Saints have done nothing but score this season. The Saints have seven games with 30 or more points, and their lowest point total this year was 24 against the Falcons.
The Saints’ defense has allowed a high of just 16 points over their last five games, while the Eagles have given up at least 22 points in every game this year.
Let’s examine both teams ahead of this matchup.
Philadelphia Eagles (3-8-1):
Jalen Hurts is the new face of the Eagles. After replacing Carson Wentz last week, Hurts will get the start this week.
In his first real opportunity this season, Hurts was 5-12 for 109 yards, a touchdown and an interception against the Packers.
Hurts provided a spark to the Eagles’ offense when he replaced Wentz. Hurts found Greg Ward for a 32-yard touchdown pass, which was the only offensive touchdown for the Eagles.
While the Eagles have made changes at the QB position, their woes at RB haven’t changed.
Miles Sanders is No. 5 in YPC this season with 5.3 YPC. However, Sanders has over 20 carries only once this season (week 2 against the Rams).
Sanders has under 15 carries five times this season, and the Eagles’ offense has yet to get him involved in a big way.
After Doug Pederson said that the Eagles will look to lean more on the running games this week, this is an opportunity for Sanders to have a breakout game.
Defensively, the Eagles give up an average of 347.1 YPG, which is No. 13 in the NFL. This high total is a major reason the Eagles are No. 18 in PPG allowed (25.6).
The Eagles’ rush defense has been one of the worst units in stopping the run this year. Giving up an average of 129.9 YPG, the Eagles’ defense has given up the eighth most rushing yards this season.
While they give up a lot of yards on the ground, Eagles’ pass defense has performed much better than their rush defense.
The Eagles give up an average of just 217.2 YPG through the air, which is No. 7 in the NFL.
Because the Saints have talented weapons like Michael Thomas, the Eagles’ pass defense needs to step up in a major way.
New Orleans Saints (10-2):
With Drew Brees expected to miss another game while on IR, Taysom Hill will get another chance to lead the Saints’ offense.
Taking over just three games ago, Hill has led the Saints to three straight wins, including two wins over the Atlanta Falcons.
The Saints’ offense has averaged 25.3 PPG under Hill and will be looking to keep their hot streak alive against a team that has just one more win than the Saints have losses.
Alvin Kamara has anchored the Saints offensively this season.
Kamara, who leads the team in both rushing and receiving yards, has been a catalyst for this team. With 1,328 all-purpose yards this year, Kamara has been one of the main reasons the Saints have enjoyed such a long win streak.
While the Saints have an explosive offense, they also have a lethal defense.
The Saints’ defense gives up an average of just 288.8 YPG, which is the lowest allowed by any team this season.
The Saints’ defense gives up the fourth least passing yards per game in the NFL (212.8 YPG) and are No. 2 in rushing yards allowed per game (76.1 YPG).
This stifling defense has smothered opposing offenses and made it tough for opponents to gain any traction against them during games.
The Saints are 8-1 against NFC teams this season, with that one loss coming against the Packers, the foe the Eagles just lost to.
Saints win 27-19, Saints (-7.5), Over 45.5
The Saints are much better offensively and defensively, and this game shouldn’t be questionable.
Both teams have shifted QBs at times this season, but only the Saints have seen long-term success. The verdict is still out on Hurts right now.
The Eagles struggle to stop the run, and the Saints have a back in Kamara that will make things very difficult for the Eagles.
The matchup of Darius Slay vs. Michael Thomas could prove to be very intriguing, but it won’t be enough for the Eagles even if Slay is able to shutdown Thomas.
Offensively, the Eagles have never sustained themselves longer than a drive or two, and I can’t trust them. Hurts will provide a spark, but you need a pretty big one to stop the Saints, a team that looks incredible.
This matchup pits one of the NFC’s best against one of the NFC’s worst, and I don’t see an upset occurring here.
The Saints will get another win to stay hot, while the Eagles will continue to search for answers.
The Saints will win 27-19, cover the spread of -7.5, and the total score will be over 45.5 points.