Ranking the 5 easiest games on the 2023 Eagles schedule
Occasionally, two statements that appear to be in contradiction of one another can both be true. The Philadelphia Eagles and each of the other 31 NFL teams will tell you that, on any given Sunday, any team can lose and that wins should never be counted on the ledger until every second runs off of the game clock. They’re right about that. Here’s what’s funny about that statement though. Every team also says ‘you have to win the games you’re supposed to win’. Do you see where this is headed?
Though they’ll never say this publicly and because they’re professionals, every NFL franchise will give an upcoming opponent their flowers ahead of the game and privately tell their group in team meetings where the advantages are and why the coming game should put a checkmark in the win column.
As soon as the NFL schedule was released, each of us, man and woman, stared at it and imagined where the wins and losses will fall. There are currently five primetime games and a tough stretch of five games that come after the bye. We’re predicting a double-digit win total thanks in part to Philly… well… winning the games they’re supposed to win.
Here are what figures to be the easiest games on the Eagles’ schedule ranked from easiest to most difficult.
Ask around. Talk to your friends and consult with some of the people you trust most about the upcoming Eagles schedule, and most will tell you the same things.
Playing the first two games within five days of one another isn’t ideal. Every game played between Week 11’s clash with the Kansas City Chiefs and Week 15’s battle with the Seattle Seahawks will tell us a lot about this team’s mettle. There’s a good chance that Philly can begin the regular season campaign with a 5-0 start or better.
They’ll probably have the following teams on their list of ‘easy games’. Here’s a ranking of the most favorable battles on the Eagles’ schedule ranked from the most winnable to the one that may give them the most trouble.
1. Los Angeles Rams
Have you seen the Rams roster? During the 2021-2022 season, Los Angeles went for broke. Perhaps you heard of their ‘eff them picks’ strategy. It worked, but mercenaries don’t hang around long, and once the smoke cleared and the dust settled, this team was left with nothing to shout about outside of Matt Stafford, Aaron Donald, Cam Akers, and Cooper Kupp.
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
There’s really no nice way to say this. Though we love former Eagle Todd Bowles dearly, he shouldn’t be someone’s head coach. Someone with his ear needs to tell him that, at best, he’s a damn good defensive coordinator. Someone needs to tell Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask that they need to accept their true roles as journeyman backups.
Regardless of who wins the QB battle here, the only thing that worries us about this game will be the humid weather. The Eagles will have two games to serve as warmups, so they’ll be in great football shape by the time the lights come on.
This one doesn’t kick off until 7:15 p.m. EST. That will help with the weather component. The Birds win this one easily.
3. Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals are awful. Two of their best players, Budda Baker and DeAndre Hopkins want out, and we aren’t even certain that the guys who want to be there like Kyler Murray. Throw in Jonathan Gannon, and you have a mess. Plus, this time around, the Eagles get Arizona at home.
4. New York Giants
You can go on talking about Brian Daboll and the fraudulent affair that was the 2022-2023 New York Giants season all you want to. We aren’t drinking the Kool-Aid.
Here’s a serious question. When was the last time the G-Men beat the Birds in a game that Philly didn’t gift-wrap for them? 2012? 2013? 2016?
Familiarity might be the only thing that makes the first game a tight one, and the G-Men could win the second affair… if Philly rests the starters and has nothing to play for. To make long stories short, Philly has taken 24 of the last 30 meetings dating back to 2008, and we’re confident about a season-sweep this season. That is, unless of course, that second game means nothing.
5. New England Patriots
We know… We know… Bill Belichick… etcetera… etcetera… If you haven’t caught up with the rest of us, we’re going to let you in on a secret.
Yes, Belichick’s spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame is certain. We looked at what he did before Tom Brady stepped on the field as New England’s starter and what he has done after he left. We have drawn an inarguable conclusion. Bill isn’t nearly as frightening without TB12 as he is with him.
The best thing the New England Patriots have going for them is the element of surprise that comes with this being the first game, but here’s what this boils down to.
The Eagles’ best effort makes them a better team than the Pats if New England gives their best shot. Philly is also better at every position. The only areas where there’s a debate might be at WILL linebacker (Matthew Judon) and slot receiver (JuJu Smith-Schuster).