It is almost unbelievable how much can change in a single month. Four weeks ago, the Philadelphia Eagles were looking at the top-seeded playoff spot in the NFC while helmed by the league-wide MVP in QB Carson Wentz. Philadelphia had pulled to become odds-on favorites to make the Super Bowl and things couldn’t have been cheerier in Philly. Unfortunately, change comes fast and hard. Wentz hit the IR with a devastating injury and the Eagles were forced to go to backup QB Nick Foles — who had last been considered a competent QB nearly five years ago. So far, Foles has shown that he has potential to help Philly to the promised land, but only just. The Super Bowl aspirations of player and team ride together and things are looking grim.
When Nick Foles took the field for his last tune-up game of the season, Week 17 against Dallas, fans were hoping to see a sharp and confident QB break the huddle. Instead, Foles would go 4/11 for 39 yards while throwing an interception. He was promptly pulled from the game in order to allow backup QB Nate Sudfeld extra reps. Of course, this disastrous start comes just two weeks removed from when Foles was absolutely dominant against Oakland. So what’s the story here?
The truth is that Philadelphia is now operating as an underdog from the top seed in the NFC. They’ll be putting all of their eggs into the basket of the right arm of Nick Foles in hopes that the Austin native can control the tempo of the game, minimize his mistakes, and find his receivers on big plays when they are needed to be made. The potential is there, of course, and Eagles fans will point to 2013 as a prime example. In 2013, Foles would throw for 27 touchdowns again just 2 interceptions en route to almost 3,000 yards passing despite missing four games that season. Can Foles catch lightning in a bottle once again?
Right now Las Vegas has Philadelphia as the underdog in every matchup that they could potentially come across. Despite Philadelphia’s dominant defense, 13 – 3 record and big-name offensive talents the Eagles have now comfortably been pushed to the ‘Rocky’ side of the ring. Philly is vulnerable and this playoff run will be a true test for the franchise. Now, we just have to see if Philadelphia can live up to the pressure or crumble like so many ‘pretty good’ teams before them.