Philadelphia Eagles: Keep An Eye On 2015 Schedule


Jun 17, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback

Nick Foles

(9) leads his team onto the field for the start of mini camp at the Eagles NovaCare Complex. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Eagles: Keep An Eye On 2015 Schedule

The Philadelphia Eagles have gone back to the drawing board in their quest to solve the riddle of “what does it take to win in the NFL?”   And while many lessons were learned about what the team could and could not do to win consistently, a truly successful plan needs to do one more thing – keep an eye on the 2015 schedule.

The team will be facing the familiar NFC East division opponents twice a year – New York Giants x2, Dallas x2, Washington x2.  Add to that the AFC East and the NFC south (New York Jets, Miami, New England, Buffalo) with (New Orleans, Tampa Bay, Atlanta, Carolina).  The final two games come from NFC second place finishers not faced – Detroit and Arizona.

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On paper, this is not the toughest schedule.   The NFC West and AFC North offer more consistant challenges.  But the teams who oppose the Eagles in 2015 carry their own set of challenges for the team.

(1)  Passing offense:   Not only will the team face the likes of Odell Beckham Jr., DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon, Dez Bryant, but they will also face Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Matt Ryan, Cam Newton, and a rejuvinated Ryan Tannehill.  No doubt every team on the 2015 schedule is licking their chops in hopes of putting up record passing yardage against us.

(2) Defense:  Surprisingly, the Eagles will be tested by their opposition’s defense.  Buffalo, New York Jets, Miami, and Carolina all had a top ten defense in 2014 – and all are likely to improve in 2015.

(3) Rookies:  The Eagles will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New York Jets, New York Giants and Washington Redskins.   Each of these teams will be picking in the top ten positions of the draft.   As such, the Eagles will likely be facing a number of first time in the NFL players throughout the course of the year.

So what can the Eagles do now?   I think it will be easy to project who the Tampa Bay Bucaneers will draft.  But the Philadelphia Eagles can use the off season to scout their players, as well as players likely to be selected elsewhere.

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  • In building the team, the Birds must address the pass defense, and emphasize continuously the issue of ball security throughout the off-season training camp.  Make every skill player train with a pair of footballs in their hands.   Emphasize controlling the ball.   And finally, the team must do more than plan to be “better”.   The Philadelphia Eagles must cement a strategy to win games against their 2015 opponents.   Having done that, the personnel moves become obvious.

    It’s a short time until free agency.  Once that gun sounds, the plan – whatever it is – goes into effect.   What comes out the other end is the 2015 Philadelphia Eagles.   That plan needs to do more than focus on the here and now.  We know who we play in 2015, we simply need to find a way to take advantage of that.