Eagle versus Patriots: New England's lone psychological advantage, four matchups to watch

There's only one way that we see the Eagles losing in Week 1 to the Patriots but we thought we'd highlight some of the best matchups anyway.
Bill Belichick, Mac Jones Philadelphia Eagles
Bill Belichick, Mac Jones Philadelphia Eagles / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
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Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni gets his first crack at besting the legend, Bill Belichick, in Week 1 of the NFL season.

Okay, how is this for a lead? We sat for seven months waiting for an opportunity to rid ourselves of the pain we felt during last year's Super Bowl loss. The Philadelphia Eagles' goal is clear, get back to football's biggest game and win it. If you can't get fired up about that, check your pulse.

This is a marathon, not a sprint. Everything begins with a Week 1 game in Foxborough versus what might be the best coach in the history of American football. He isn't much of a general manager. Bill Belichick the G.M. always seems to screw Bill Belichick the head coach, but you always have to be wary of any team he is leading. The Birds are going to have a fight on their hands come Sunday.

There's only one way the Eagles lose this game.

Remember that first home game in the Louisiana Superdome post-Hurricane Katrina? One of our great nation's best cities was still rebuilding. The New Orleans Saints were playing one of their fiercest rivals, the Atlanta Falcons, and the game was on Monday Night Football.

Five minutes in, something came into focus for anyone who was watching. The Saints could have been playing the '85 Chicago Bears or the '72 Miami Dolphins. There was no way that they were losing on that night.

Fast forward to the present. Week 1's game doubles as Tom Brady Appreciation Day, and while that won't equal the emotional buzzsaw that the Falcons walked into, it could give the Patriots some juice. If they feed off of the crowd and if Belichick can deliver a masterful coaching performance, the Birds could walk out of Foxborough with a loss.

Over here, we're predicting a 1-0 start for Philly because we believe the most critical matchups favor them. If it please the court, here are four of such we'd like to enter into evidence.