Week 11: Philadelphia Eagles At Washington Redskins
- QuarterbackAs if the Eagles didn’t have enough problems, Michael Vick suffered a concussion against the Cowboys in Week 10 and he is not likely to play against the Redskins. Vick has been blamed for his tendency to turn the ball over, but the Eagles offensive line regularly lets pass rushers run free. Backup Nick Foles threw an interception for a touchdown and his fumble was turned into a touchdown in Week 10.RGIII has had a couple of tough games in a row and he also takes a physical pounding because he is the centerpiece of the Redskins’ offense. However, he is a resilient player who is coming off a bye week. He should be at his best and that should cause a lot of problems for Philadelphia. RGIII has a powerful arm, a quickrelease and is a solid leader.
- OffenseThe Eagles have excellent skill-position players, but that’s not enough because their offensive line has been simply awful this season. Head coach Andy Reid would be well-advised to let running back LeSean McCoy take over as the lead option for the Philadelphia offense because the pass blocking has been so awful. McCoy has rushed for 705 yards. Wide receiver DeSean Jackson has caught 42 passes for 686 yards and 2 TDs.Alfred Morris gives the Redskins a power running game. He’s an underrated performer who takes quite a bit of the burden off of RGIII. Morris has rushed for 793 yards and he is averaging 4.8 yards per carry. Wide receiver Leonard Hankerson has caught 26-342-1, but when the Redskins need a big play, Santana Moss is his top receiving option.
- DefenseThe Eagles play hard on the defensive end, but it has not been enough to overcome all the turnovers on the offensive end. Philadelphia ranks 11th in yards allowed and middle linebacker DeMeco Ryans is probably the Eagles best all-around defensive player. He leads the team with 70 tackles and he also has been credited with two passes defensed.The Redskins are struggling this year because their defensive positioning has not been good. It’s not a question of a lack of effort – just talent and know-how. Ryan Kerrigan has 4.5 sacks but only 25 tackles from the outside linebacker position. That’s not enough at this point in the season.
- Special TeamsThe Eagles are not getting big plays from their special teams, but they have given up a punt return for a score. Placekicker Alex Henery missed an extra point in the loss to the Cowboys and that may indicate a loss of confidence.The Redskins certainly feel much better about special team with Kai Forbath handling the placekicking duties. He has made all eight of his FG attempts since replacing Billy Cundiff. Sav Rocca gets excellent height on his punts and rarely allows a decent return.
This is a game that looks like it is even from the check marks, but the Eagles are going to have to turn it around dramatically to have a chance. While Michael Vick has endured a tough season, it’s a huge step down to Nick Foles at the quarterback position. RGIII should be at his best after coming off a bye week and he could obliterate the overworked Eagles defense.