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TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 9: Philadelphia Eagles at New Orleans Saints

Philadelphia
New Orleans
Atlanta Falcons v Philadelphia Eagles
New Orleans Saints v Denver Broncos
Quarterbacks
Michael Vick’s days as the Eagles’ quarterback appear to be numbered. After the Eagles lost to the undefeated Falcons in Week Eight, Vick said that Andy Reid told him a change at the quarterback position was being considered. While Vick has had turnover problems throughout the season, he did not turn the ball over once against the Falcons.
Winner Drew Brees had one of his most frustrating games at Denver in Week Eight, and he should be primed for a much better effort against the Eagles. Brees loves lighting up the scoreboard at home and he certainly has the skills to do that. He reads defenses as well as any quarterback in the game and throws an extremely accurate pass.
Offense
The Eagles should be much more consistent on the offensive end. They certainly have the weapons to cause problems for any defense. Running back LeSean McCoy can get it done as a runner and a receiver and wide receiver Desean Jackson can stretch the field. Tight end Brent Celek has good hands and can pluck the ball in tight quarters.
Winner The Saints have a ton of weapons who can devastate any defense, including Marques Colston and Lance Moore. Jimmy Graham has superior talent at tight end as he can go up the seam and stretch the defense. Darren Sproles is very difficult to cover when he comes out of the backfield on a pass pattern. Pierre Thomas runs with balance and power.
Defense
Winner The Eagles fired defensive coordinator Juan Castillo during their bye week and then came out and played one of their worst defensive games against the Falcons. They did not bother Matt Ryan and the Falcons’ running game also caused problems. It could get even worse this week against the explosive Saints. Middle linebacker DeMeco Ryans had nine tackles against Atlanta.
The Saints have been vulnerable on the defensive side of the ball all season and they were devastated by the Broncos. Peyton Manning threw for 305 yards and the Broncos also ran for 225 yards. Beleaguered linebacker Jonathan Vilma returned against the Broncos, but he is not yet in top form. Strong safety Roman Harper seems like he is a step behind on many plays.
Special Teams
Winner The Eagles can’t complain about the performance of placekicker Alex Henery, who has made 12-of-13 field goal attempts this season. Matt McBriar averaged 48.0 yards per punt against Atlanta and dropped two of his three kicks inside the 20.
The Saints are not getting a lot from placekicker Garrett Hartley, as he has made 7-of-9 field goal attempts this season. Thomas Morstead averaged 51.6 yards on eight punts against the Broncos and dropped 4-of-8 kicks inside the 20.

The Winner Is

New Orleans Saints v Denver Broncos
Winner New Orleans
2 out of 4

The Saints probably are not going to make a miracle run to get back in the playoffs, but it’s unlikely they will start to mail it in. There’s no pressure since head coach Sean Payton isn’t around. However, that’s not the case with Andy Reid, who is unlikely to come back unless the Eagles make the postseason.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 25:  Odell Beckham #13 of the New York Giants breaks a tackle by Josh Norman #24 of the Washington Redskins in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 25, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 25:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers runs the ball against Everson Griffen #97 and Tom Johnson #92 of the Minnesota Vikings in the 1st half during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
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  2. KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 25: Center Mitch Morse #61 of the Kansas City Chiefs prepares to snap the ball to Alex Smith #11 at Arrowhead Stadium during the second quarter of the game against the New York Jets on September 25, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers passes against  Bennie Logan #96 of the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Kansas City Chiefs At Pittsburgh Steelers

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  3. ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 25:  Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at AT&T Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Running back Carlos Hyde #28 of the San Francisco 49ers rushes for a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 25, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. The Seahawks defeated the 49ers 37-18.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
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