Phillies

Phillies

Philadelphia Eagles center Cam Jurgens (51) protects quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) against the Minnesota Vikings at Lincoln Financial Field.

The last team the Eagles played the Chiefs, we all got our hearts broken. They took a lead into the locker room at halftime. Philly fans were on cloud 9 thinking a parade down Broad Street was in our near future. But it was not to be. The Chiefs roared back, and the Eagles’ defense failed to get a single stop in the second half. In the end, it was Patrick Mahomes, not Jalen Hurts, who was lifting up the Lombardi Trophy. But now we get a rematch tonight on Monday Night Football.

With both teams coming off of a bye week, they meet in Kansas City tonight for a game with huge implications in the standings. They each come in atop their respective conference but without a lot of wiggle room. The winner will likely come away being called the best team in the league, while the loser will suddenly be on their heels to protect the 1 seed.

The Eagles have a lot of tough games coming up. Bills, Niners, and Cowboys. They have a 2 game buffer in the division which gives them some wiggle room. But the Lions are right on their heels with just two losses, and have a very easy schedule the rest of the way.

They are thankfully getting some reinforcements. Both Bradley Roby and Cam Jurgens are back this week. Which should help with a couple of their issues. Mainly defense over the middle of the field, and the run game on offense. But even still, this is one of those games where everyone will have to be on their game to come away with a win. What matchups are the most important to watch though? Who needs to step up tonight the most for the Eagles to win?

Here Are 6 Eagles Who Need To Have A Big Game Tonight Against the Chiefs:

  • Cam Jurgens

    When Cam Jurgens was healthy, the Eagles’ run game was as good as any team in the league. Since he got hurt in week 4 it has had a hard time getting going. That is not all on account of missing Cam Jurgens, but it certainly plays a part. The good news is he is back. The Eagles will have their full offensive line for the first time since the first Commanders game. And while the Chiefs’ defense is stout against the pass, it can be run on. It feels like it is a great game to get the run game going again.

  • Kevin Byard

    The most important player on defense is whoever is covering Travis Kelce. And it seems like the plan is for that to be Kevin Byard. Byard has not quite lived up to the hype since joining the Eagles before the Trade Deadline. He has been by no means bad. But he has not been as good as we know he is capable of. The hope is the bye weeks helped him get more comfortable with the Eagles scheme, and he can come out of it looking closer to the guy who used to be an All-Pro Safety. And they need that to be the case because it will fall on him to at least slow down Travis Kelce. For what it is worth, Byard does have a good history against Kelce from his time with the Titans.

    Tim McManus on Twitter: "Eagles S Kevin Byard has been highly effective against Travis Kelce in previous matchups.Byard has held Kelce to 3 catches on 8 targets for 37 yards as the nearest defender since 2016, per Next Gen stats. pic.twitter.com/xmwDQbRB0g / Twitter"

    Eagles S Kevin Byard has been highly effective against Travis Kelce in previous matchups.Byard has held Kelce to 3 catches on 8 targets for 37 yards as the nearest defender since 2016, per Next Gen stats. pic.twitter.com/xmwDQbRB0g

  • Olamide Zaccheaus

    Zaccheaus has not played a big part in the Eagles offense to this point. With AJ Brown, Devonta Smith, Dallas Goedert, and D’Andre Swift, there are already so few targets to go around. But now the Eagles are without Goedert. Normally you would think one of the backup TEs would slot into taking his targets. But we have yet to see any reason to think any of them are ready to fill that role.

    Instead, we should expect to see what the Eagles did last year, far more sets with an extra WR. Quez Watkins saw a huge bump in his targets with Goedert out last season, but he is on the IR. This year it should be Zaccheaus who sees more time. Starting with tonight’s game vs the Chiefs. And with the Chiefs having a great outside Corner Duo, they may need him to do something out of the slot.

    ESPN on Twitter: "Jalen Hurts DIMES Zaccheaus for SIX!📺 ABC, ESPN+ pic.twitter.com/b0iug9yjkn / Twitter"

    Jalen Hurts DIMES Zaccheaus for SIX!📺 ABC, ESPN+ pic.twitter.com/b0iug9yjkn

  • Haason Reddick and Josh Sweat

    Very few QBs hold onto the ball as long as Patrick Mahomes does. And yet, he has only been sacked 12 times. That’s not just because his O-line is playing at a high level, but because he is better than anyone at avoiding pressure. He will buy time as long as he can and is great at getting the ball out just before the defense gets to him. It leads to him getting hit way too much, but at least so far, it is working.

    And it creates a problem for the defense. They can’t just focus on getting pressure on him. They also have to make him make quick decisions. Just forcing him out of the pocket is not enough, because he has shown he is more than comfortable playing under pressure. They need to get to him quickly and finish the play. That starts with Reddick and Sweat on the outside. Get pressure, but also don’t let him escape.

  • Jalen Hurts

    The QB is always going to be important to the game plan. But given it is a Super Bowl rematch it feels worth making special mention of him here. Hurts played near perfect in the Super Bowl, with one big mistake that led to a TD the other way. He made up for it ten times over the rest of that game. But it ended up being a difference maker.

    Earlier in the season Hurts had a big turnover issue, but it seems to have been worked out. But if the Eagles are going to win tonight, he needs to be perfect. No mistakes. We saw in the Super Bowl he is capable of keeping up with Mahomes. But the game is going to be close enough already, and just one turnover may be enough to tip the scales the other way. It helps that he seems to have gotten much healthier over the bye week.

    Tim McManus on Twitter: "Jalen Hurts' health trending in the right direction in front on Monday's game against the Chiefs. My report for SportsCenter: pic.twitter.com/UMAEynWptp / Twitter"

    Jalen Hurts' health trending in the right direction in front on Monday's game against the Chiefs. My report for SportsCenter: pic.twitter.com/UMAEynWptp

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