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TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 5: Philadelphia Eagles At Pittsburgh Steelers

Eagles
Steelers
Chicago Bears v Philadelphia Eagles
Pittsburgh Steelers v San Francisco 49ers
Quarterback
The Eagles steadied themselves in their 19-17 win over the New York Giants. Not only did the Eagles stand up to the defending Super Bowl champions, they kept quarterback Michael Vick upright. When Vick can play without getting wrecked – as he did the week before vs. the Cardinals – he is still a dangerous performer who can shred the defense with his arm strength and athletic ability.
Winner Ben Roethlisberger is one of the most dangerous and unique quarterbacks in the league. He uses his mountainous size and strength to throw off potential sackers and he is also quite elusive. Roethlisberger is throwing the ball well and he can hit the deep ball with regularity.
Offense
Winner The Eagles have a plethora of weapons to help Vick out. LeSean McCoy is a versatile running back who can run with speed and also get it done between the tackles. Wide receiver DeSean Jackson is a big-play threat who can stretch the field. Tight end Brent Celek has dependable hands.
The Steelers should get a boost to their running game as Rashard Mendenhall is expected to return against the Eagles. Mendenhall is an especially solid weapon in the fourth quarter. Wide receiver Mike Wallace is a big-play wideout who can go downfield and leap over the defense to make big plays. Pittsburgh has an excellent offensive line.
Defense
The Eagles are playing much better positional defense than they did a year ago. The run defense has been solid as the Eagles held the Giants to 57 rushing yards. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie looks good in the secondary (interception in fourth quarter vs. Eli Manning).
Winner The bye week came at the right time for the Steelers, who were somewhat beaten up and bruised early in the season. Outside linebacker James Harrison couldn’t play against the Raiders due to his knee injury but may return here. Troy Polamalu sets the tone in the secondary and could intimidate Philadelphia’s receivers.
Special Teams
The Eagles feel comfortable about their special teams play. Alex Henery made a field goal under pressure to bring the Eagles the winning points against the Giants and he was 4-of-4 in the game. Matt McBriar has a strong leg and can place the ball well as a punter.
Winner The Steelers have rarely had extraordinary special teams in the Mike Tomlin era. Placekicker Shaun Suisham is 5-of-5 on his FG attempts this year, but he is not a sure thing. Punter Drew Butler is decent but not special.

The Winner Is

Pittsburgh Steelers v San Francisco 49ers
Winner Steelers
3 out of 4

The Eagles have managed to defeat two quality teams in Baltimore and the Giants at home, but they have not impressed on the road. The Steelers are coming off an early bye week and should be at their best. It may be too much for the Eagles to overcome even though they have a few edges on the home team.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15:  Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks to throw a pass against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 14: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to pass in the second half against the Houston Texans during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Gillette Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
    Conference Championship Tale: Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots

    The Steelers and Patriots meet in Foxboro for the right to go to Super Bowl LI in Houston.

  2. ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers drops back to pass during the first quarter against the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Divisional Playoff game at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 14:  Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the game at the Georgia Dome on January 14, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
    Conference Championship Tale: Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons

    Two MVP candidates at quarterback meet up in Atlanta for the right to go to Super Bowl LI in Houston.

  3. GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 8:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers drops back to pass in the second quarter during the NFC Wild Card game against the New York Giants at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 26: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Detroit Lions during the first half at AT&T Stadium on December 26, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
    Divisional Round Tale: Green Bay Packers at Dallas Cowboys

    The Packers look to avenge a loss to the Cowboys in the regular season.

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