Sunday, November 27, 2016

Playoff Hopes On the Line this Monday Night in Philly

Before this NFL season got underway, I had the Green Bay Packers winning the NFC as the best team in the conference and I had the Eagles finishing at 7-9 in Doug Pederson's first season as Philadelphia's head coach. I am obviously dead wrong in my first prediction and I am praying that I am also wrong with my previous prediction for the Birds.

It has not always been a pretty ride this season on the way to an even 5-5 mark through the Eagles' first 10 games, but all-in-all this team has been able to exceed most fans' expectations. Carson Wentz is still going through some major growing pains as a rookie quarterback in the NFL, but I think it is safe to say that he is on the right path to becoming a very good franchise quarterback in this league. Pederson has made some questionable calls that may have cost his team a win or two along the way, but for the most part I do think he has what it takes to be a head coach at this level.

The Packers are in trouble after losing their last four games while giving up 153 points and I do not see them turning things around this Monday night at the Linc. As far as Philly's future this season, a win against Green Bay would put the Eagles just a half game behind Washington for the final wild card spot in the NFC as far as making it into the playoffs. I know I should not be talking about the playoffs with a team that has now lost five of its last seven games, but a favorable schedule over the final six weeks of the season does make a trip to the postseason a distinct possibility.

I will concede the NFC East title to Dallas following this past Thursday's win, but the Redskins and the Giants are not as good as their current record might indicate. Philly has the tie-breaker against Minnesota and I also cannot see Tampa Bay staying in playoff contention all the way to Week 17. A 9-7 mark could be good enough to snag one of those two wild card playoff spots and if the Eagles were to be one of those two teams that would add up to a very successful season in my book.

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