Eagles vs. Lions: Plenty of Offensive Firepower Expected
Offensive Firepower Expected In Philadelphia Eagles-Detroit Lions Matchup
It’s a matchup that will have a great effect on the outcome of both teams’ seasons -- a showdown between division leaders, attempting to keep pace atop their respective NFC homes and solidify their outlook for the remainder of the year. Plenty of attention will be focused on Lincoln Financial Field when the Detroit Lions visit the Philadelphia Eagles.
However, much of that focus will be on the high-powered, star-studded ffenses, rather than the ever-present but less high-profile defenses. Although each team has some standouts holding down the proverbial fort, the defenses have much less glitz and glam compared to the offenses that will be on display.
Each team is more than capable of putting up huge numbers, with most of the hype coming from the skill positions on the offensive side of the ball. The quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers will garner much of the attention as the teams stake their claim to playoff implications come Sunday. Their production will have a direct effect on the outcome of the contest and their team's triumph or demise.
Philadelphia enters the game on a four-game win streak, led by stellar and consistent play on both sides of the ball. The Lions, winners of their last game, come to Philadelphia after having a long break, taking the luxury that comes with playing on Thanksgiving Day. Both teams are in desperate need of a victory. One to keep the lead, the other to keep pace for the lead. It sets up for interesting drama and a whole lot of pressure that will definitely make for a game between two up-and-coming teams in the NFL.
6. Matthew Stafford
Since entering the NFL five years ago, Matthew Stafford has become a solid and reliable professional quarterback. It obviously helps that he is paired with the best receiver in the game today, but Stafford has been a major part of the Detroit Lions' resurgence as the playoff caliber team they are today. Stafford has a very capable arm, although he does have tendency to turn it over. The Eagles will have to be aware of his strengths and do their best to cause enough pressure to continue the turnover woes which have plagued the Lions of late.
5. DeSean Jackson
Having the best season of his professional career, DeSean Jackson is on pace to break his bests in both receptions and yards. He has played in integral part in Chip Kelly’s offense, continuing to open defenses up with the long ball, but adding to his repertoire in the new system. He continues to be threatening in the return game, which he becomes more a part of as the importance of games grows. The Eagles should look for Jackson to take advantage of a weak Detroit secondary in order to help open up the run attack and make Philadelphia more dangerous.
4. Reggie Bush
Jump-starting his career from the insignificance that it had reached, Reggie Bush has found a place which he can truly call home. He has found a system that fits his skills in Detroit and has really had one of his best years as a professional. He continues to be multi-faceted back, running the ball and lining up to receive at times as well. He elusive running ability make him dangerous in either aspect once the ball’s in his hands. Look for Bush to build off the stellar Thanksgiving Day which he had. but the Eagles should continue their success against the run by keeping him under wraps.
3. LeSean McCoy
For the first time since the season began, LeSean McCoy does not lead the NFL in rushing. That doesn’t change the importance he has for the Philadelphia Eagles or the ability that he possess to be able and take over a game. McCoy, like his counterpart Reggie Bush, is a multi-faceted back that can hurt the opposition’s defense both on the ground and through the air. His production has been inconsistent at times throughout the year, but he is clearly more threatening with each play run in the Chip Kelly system. McCoy has been an intricate part of the Philadelphia win streak, and if they have plans on continuing it, he’ll have to be a big part of the offense against the Lions.
2. Calvin Johnson
Without a doubt the best receiver in football, Calvin Johnson possesses a unique skill set of speed, power and size to go along with reliable ball-catching hands. Johnson, who currently leads the league in receiving yards as well as receiving touchdowns, brings a defensive challenge to the opponent each week. He has demonstrated that regardless of the number of defenders assigned to him, he can still be effective. The Eagles’ secondary will easily have their stiffest test of the season, but if they plan on helping the team to chase the NFC East lead, they’ll have to find a way to limit the damage that “Megatron” causes.
1. Nick Foles
Putting himself in the conversation among elite quarterbacks in the NFL, Nick Foles has also put himself in the spotlight. The expectations have risen with each passing week, yet he has been able to meet the challenges and help the Eagles run off four in a row. His consistency and production will have a direct effect on Philadelphia’s ability to keep pace in the division and gain another victory against Detroit on Sunday. Protecting the football will continue to be a key, while he'll need to keep spreading the ball around and getting all facets of the offense involved in order to keep the defense on their heels. In addition, Foles is just two touchdowns away from breaking an NFL record if he can get them before throwing a pick. Look for Foles to continue building on the stellar body of work which he’s put together to this point.