The Best Show Ever?

The Best Show Ever?

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 12: Jalen Hurts #1 of the Philadelphia Eagles reacts before playing against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII at State Farm Stadium on February 12, 2023 in Glendale, Arizona.

The Eagles Schedule is out. It starts with them traveling to New England to face the Patriots, and it ends yet again with a game vs the Giants. After multiple days of navigating “leaks” we no longer have to guess which piece of info is real or not, we just know. You can even go to the Eagles themselves to see what their schedule will look like. They put it out themselves, with help from all the team dogs, and a little assist from one Phillies dog.

Adorable.

But now we go from guessing what the the schedule will look like, to endlessly breaking down each game. In the next few days, there will be a many an Eagles fan and media members going game by game to break downs wins and losses. Even if it annoys certain people at this station.

That is not what we are here to do today though. Instead, I want to look at the nature of the schedule itself. Do the Eagles have any schedule advantages? Disadvantages. How often are the Eagles playing in prime time? Is it really as tough of a schedule as people say it is? I went through some of the nitty gritty details of the Eagles’ Schedule, to come away with some interesting takeaways.

  • Very Hard on Paper

    Going into last season, the Eagles had one of the easiest schedules on paper. This season, they have the hardest. Their strength of schedule is .566. One may think the difference is that this year they will play first-place teams as opposed to 2nd place teams the way they did last year. And that makes some difference. They have to play the Chiefs for instance. But the first-place schedule only affects 3 games. Because of that, they get the Chiefs, Vikings, and Bucs. Vikings is a semi-difficult draw. But getting to play the now Tom Brady-less Buccaneers is probably a plus.

    The real difference is how good the NFC East was last year. It was the worst division in 2021. And you play each team twice. So at the start of the season, the strength of schedule looked easy because the NFC East mostly had bad records the prior year. But last year even the Commanders had a decent record considering. They also have to play the very tough AFC East, instead of the pushover AFC South like they did last season.

    Pre-Season strength of schedule gets overrated. But it does look like a hard schedule on paper. They have to face several of the toughest teams in the AFC. And also the Jets, who now have Aaron Rodgers and should be much better. Still, months out, some of these teams we think will be tough, may not be very good. And teams other teams get to play that we think will be easy may actually end up tough.

  • Tough Stretch To End the Season

    The Toughest part comes in November and into Dallas. The first week in November they face the Cowboys. Then they have a bye. Followed by the Chiefs, then the Bills, the Niners, The Cowboys Again, the Seahawks, and then the Giants twice with one easy game vs the Cardinals in between. That’s 8 playoff teams across 9 games.

  • Start on the road again

    For the second straight year, they begin their season on the road. This time they get to stay in their time zone though. They travel up to New England to play The Patriots in week 1. If you are going to make us wait until week two, at least give us a marquee matchup week 1 on the road. Not the Lions like last year, or the Patriots this year.

  • Don't Play the Giants Until Christmas

    Other than the Commanders, the Eagles dont get many divisional games early in the season. They don’t play the Cowboys for the first time until November. But even crazier, they don’t face the Giants until week 16 on Christmas. Two of their last 3 games are vs the Giants. You couldn’t split up the Giants games just a little bit NFL? Its kind of a shame the two games are so close together.

  • More Road Games Than Home Games

    With the schedule now having 17 games, some teams get to have an extra home game. Last year the Eagles got that luxury. But not this year. They have to be on the road 9 times this season. Including to both open and close out the regular season.

  • 5 National TV Games

    We were told that the Eagles would likely get the maximum National Games. Turns out they got 1 less, with a chance for that final game vs the Giants to flex into the 6th. The only teams that got more were the Chiefs, Chargers, Cowboys, and Bills. Is it weird on paper the Super Bowl runner-up is not one of those with 6? Yes. But it feels like they wanted to keep one open in hopes that the final game between the Eagles and Giants can be flexed.

  • Only One Thursday Night Game

    The news that there was no longer a cap on times teams could play Thursday Night was scary. Nobody likes Thursday games. Players don’t want to play in it. No fans want to see their teams play in it. But we all still watch it because it’s the NFL and we collectively have an addiction that we can’t beat. Luckily, the Eagles only have one Thursday night game on the docket. And it is the second game of the season vs the Vikings for their home opener.

  • Two Monday Night Games

    We will not see much of Joe Buck or Troy Aikman calling Eagles games this year. They play on Monday three times. One is Christmas and a Fox game. Another is vs the Chiefs. The other week 3, when there are two Monday night games. The Eagles game starts at 7:15 on ABC. So even that may not be Buck and Aikman. The other Monday Night game that week is Bengals-Rams on ESPN. The only true Monday Night game, where they are the only game, is that Chiefs game in week 11.

  • Two Sunday Night Games

    The rest of their primetime games come on Sunday Night. They play SNF twice. Week 7 at home vs the Dolphins, and then week 14 in Dallas.

  • 9 Games on Fox

    The NFL changed things up this year, deciding there were no longer Networks specific to each conference. Meaning there will be NFC games on CBS, and AFC games on Fox. With that said, they will still mostly be on Fox. 9 times this year they are scheduled to be on Fox. Maybe 10 if Fox carries that Giants game in the final week. 6 of those are the 4pm game. So I hope you like Greg Olsen, because we may see a lot of him.

  • Just 2 CBS Games

    Despite the new broadcast rules, the Eagles won’t be on CBS much. Just two times in fact. And both are vs AFC teams. At the Patriots in week 1, and then home vs the Bills in week 12. People who hate hearing Tony Romo should be happy.

  • 7 4 o'clock Games

    Get ready to wait around on Sunday to see the Eagles a lot. They play in the 4 pm slot 7 times next year. Add in the 5 prime time games, plus the Christmas game, it leaves just 3 1 pm games. There could be a 4th if the Eagles-Giants game in the final week doesn’t get flexed to 4 or Sunday night. But most likely, that will also be a 4 pm game or the night game.

    That is what happens when you are a very good team though. They want to get the Eagles on more TVs, so they play at 4 more often, or in primetime more often.

  • Play The Vikings in Week 2 for Their Home Opener Again

    Oddly enough for the second straight year, they meet up with the Vikings in week 2. And also once again, it is their home opener. Last year they blew the Vikings out. Hopefully this year it will be the same thing.

  • Week 10 Bye Week

    The Eagles get their bye week in week 10. Feels like a good spot to get a break. Not so early it is wasted, but it is not too late either. We of course don’t know when it will be most needed. There may be some other week where a player has a one-week injury that we wish we had the bye for so they wouldn’t miss a game. But without seeing the future, it’s a good time to have the bye week.

  • Share the Same Bye As the Chiefs

    They also get their bye before playing the Chiefs, which is good. With that said the Chiefs also have a week 10 bye.  Nick Sirianni is 3-1 with a week off between games in his career. The one loss came to the Chiefs in the Super Bowl. Andy Reid is 27-4 coming off the bye week in the regular season.

    Having to face a team who is also coming off their bye is a bit of a disadvantage. In comparison, The Cowboys get to play the Rams in week 8 of their own bye week, and in that case, the Rams do not also have a bye. It’s not an intentional thing they did to the Eagles. They probably just wanted the Chiefs and Eagles game to be as good as possible.

  • Have the rest disadvantage in 9 games, and the advantage in only 2 games

    Sometimes, teams are going to have rest advantages. It may be because their opponent is coming off a Prime Time game so they only get 6 days. Or Maybe they are coming off Thursday night Football and have several extra days of rest. It’s an unavoidable part of the game. The weird part, is the Eagles are seemingly on the short side of it every year. Last year the Eagles were near the top of the league with 5 games where they have a rest disadvantage. This year, it is even worse, with them having 9 games where the other team gets more rest than them.

    Rest Advantage

    – Week 3 on Monday Night- Eagles get a few extra days of rest vs Bucs after playing on Thursday Night in week 2, Bucs play at 1pm on Sunday in Week 2

    – Week 13- Eagles play the Niners at 4:25, who played Sunday Night the week before

    Rest Disadvantage

    -Week 2- On Thursday Night- The Week before the Vikings play at 1, while the Eagles have to play at 4

    -Week 4- Eagles coming off a Monday Night game, get 1 less day of rest than Commanders

    -Week 7- On Sunday Night Football- Eagles play at 4 the week before, Dolphins at 1.

    -Week 8- Coming off Sunday Night Football, The Eagles play the Commanders who play at 1 the week before

    -Week 12- Coming off Monday Night Football, the Eagles play the Bills at 4:25 on Sunday, who are playing on full rest

    -Week 14- They play the Cowboys on Sunday Night Football, who are coming off Thursday Night Football

    -Week 15- Play Seattle at 4:25, coming off a Sunday Night game, Seahawks have full rest

    – Week 16- The week before Eagles play at 4, while Giants play at 1

    – Week 17- Cardinals on full rest, while Eagles come off a Monday game vs the Giants

    Of course, some of these are advantages of just 3 hours. Even that can make a bit of a difference though. But what hurts more is they very rarely get to face teams coming off prime-time games. Meanwhile 5 times they play a team who is on full rest, while they come off Sunday Night or Monday game. The good part is other than the Chiefs, they don’t face any other teams coming off their bye week.

     

     

  • Only 2 Road Games on Short Rest

    Another thing that always seems to vex the Eagles is road games on short rest. Last year they had 4. This year the schedule makers were slightly kinder. Only 2. Vs the Commanders in week 8, and then the Bills in week 2. So slightly better. They are still among the leaders when it comes to road games off short rest thought. Weird how it happens every year.

  • 2 Games on the West Coast

    Last year the Eagles were lucky enough to avoid the west coast altogether. The furthest west they had to go was Arizona, which runs on Mountain time, two hours behind us in the East. This year, not so lucky. They avoid the Mountain Time Zone altogether, but instead, they have to take two separate trips to the west coast. In Week 5 to play the Rams in LA. And then in week 15 in Seattle. That game has the added downside of being the second game of a road trip after they play in Dallas week 14.

    But other than that, they play one game in the Central Time Zone, Kansas City. And every other game lets them stay in the Eastern Time Zone. About as kind of a travel schedule as you can hope for given you have to play the NFC West so west-coast road trips are unavoidable. In the past Eagles were lucky enough to have those games back to back so they can stay out there. Not the case this year.

  • No 3-Game Road Trips

    Another plus, is they have no 3-game road trips. They go on two-game road trips twice. One we already mention when they go from Dallas to Seattle, which is admittedly rough. But the only other one comes in weeks 8 and 9. They head out to LA but then come back the next week to play the Jets in New York.

  • Just 2 2-Game HomeStands

    On the flip side, that also means they don’t get any extended homestands. There are only two times they get to stay home for consecutive weeks. The first comes in weeks 12 and 13 when the Bills and 49ers come to Philly. Then a few weeks later they stay home to face the Giants and then the Cardinals. Otherwise, there is a lot of coming home, just to hit the road again the following week.

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