Eagles news: Super Bowl hangovers, Philly’s phenomenal roster
Oh, those superstitions… Whether you believe in them or not, they have, no doubt, worked their way into our subconscious. How many times have you heard of the EA Sports Madden NFL curse or the Super Bowl hangover? Well, there were no Philadelphia Eagles on the cover of last year’s version of the beloved pro football sim. The great John Madden landed there himself, and rightfully so. It doesn’t look like there will be any Birds on this year’s cover either. That ‘hangover’ theory, however, has people talking.
After landing a few points short of winning the second Vince Lombardi Trophy in franchise history, anything less than getting back to football’s biggest game and winning it will be a step backward for Philadelphia… Hey… No pressure…
Jalen Hurts’ temperament and the veteran leadership on this team have instilled some faith in football’s most loyal fan base. If the Birds do take a step backward, we know it won’t be because this team isn’t focused. Meanwhile, everyone has an opinion about what we might witness.
Eagles news: CBS Sports projects Philly finishes behind Dallas in the NFC East.
Here’s something worth checking out when you have a moment. Will Brinson of CBS Sports recently took a stab at predicting divisional finishes and the subsequent playoff qualifiers for the coming NFL season.
You’re familiar with that discussion about the NFC East having nary a repeat winner since the Eagles won the division from 2001 until 2004, right? Well, it appears that Brinson doesn’t believe the Birds will end that streak this season.
He believes that, as was the case in 2022, the East will send three teams to the playoffs. There’s a twist though. This time, the Dallas Cowboys win the division, and the Eagles and New York Giants are the Wild Card teams. Technically, that alone doesn’t qualify as a Super Bowl hangover, but you get the idea. After last year’s phenomenal run, no one wants to see Philly finish behind Dallas.
If we’re being honest, we don’t see a scenario in which it happens. Frankly, we see the Eagles holding serve and the Cowboys taking a step backward. You can’t blame a Super Bowl hangover for anything happening in Dallas though.
More Eagles news: Pro Football Focus ranks Philadelphia’s roster as the NFL’s best.
We mentioned Jalen Hurts and that veteran leadership on the Eagles roster earlier. In addition to QB1 and the core four (Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox, Jason Kelce, and Lane Johnson), Philadelphia has a nice mix of polished veterans, like James Bradberry and Darius Slay.
They also employ a nice crop of young stars. See DeVonta Smith, Jordan Mailata, and Landon Dickerson if you’d like to see evidence of that fact. It’s for that reason that Pro Football Focus’s Dalton Wasserman and Jim Wyman rank their roster as the NFL’s best.
They rank the trenches as Philly’s biggest strength. Here is some of their take.
"The Eagles led the league in pass protection and pass-rush grade in 2022, making life easier for everyone around them. Their offensive line allowed Jalen Hurts to become an MVP-caliber dual threat. Their defense finished with the third-most sacks in NFL history during the regular season. Their units up front are loaded with stars, including Jason Kelce, Lane Johnson, Haason Reddick and Brandon Graham. While Javon Hargrave is a big loss on the defensive interior, they had Jalen Carter fall into their laps in the draft. The Eagles’ offensive and defensive lines will keep them competitive despite departures elsewhere."
Here are a few other things to keep in mind. Last season, the Philadelphia Eagles fielded eight Pro Bowlers and six All-Pros, and the argument can be made that they should have had one or two more of each. DeVonta Smith was most certainly snubbed.
Every player on those lists returns minus Pro Bowl running back Miles Sanders. Philly has since upgraded the unit with the addition of D’Andre Swift and Rashaad Penny.
Offseason acquisitions and another stellar draft class again have fans excited. This is an exciting Eagles roster on paper. Time will tell if that translates to on-field success.