PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Former Philadelphia middleweight and light heavyweight world champion Bernard Hopkins used to have a telling effect on most fighters he fought late in his career.
They were never the same after facing the future Hall of Famer.
It seems this NFL season, the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles are having that same telling effect on teams. The three teams that have beaten the Eagles this season — Tampa Bay, Tennessee and Minnesota — have a combined 1-5 record since beating the Eagles.
As Hopkins used to explain, when a fighter faced him, they expended so much physical, mental and psychological exertion that it wasted their limits to recover in time for their next fight.
With the Eagles, that also may be the case, and no one has sunken faster after beating the Eagles than the Tennessee Titans.
For those who care to recall that debacle, the Titans, an anemic offense all season, managed to convert three times on fourth down in overtime — once, on a fourth-and-15 at their 31. The Titans’ 26-point output is their largest this season, and since then, the Titans haven’t scored a touchdown in eight quarters.
They lost to Buffalo, 13-12, following the victory over the Eagles. Last week, Marcus Mariota was sacked 11 times by the Baltimore Ravens, who established a new franchise sack record with the total.
Since Tampa Bay beat the Eagles on Sept. 16, they’ve gone 0-3 and have turned the ball over nine times. Against the Eagles, Tampa Bay’s defense gave up a season-low 21 points. Since then, they’ve been pounded for an average of 37.3 points a game and a combined total of 112 points.
Let’s see how the Minnesota Vikings make out in the coming weeks. They face teams with .500 records or better in three of their next four games.
And let’s see how much the Carolina Panthers are willing to exert this Sunday when they visit Lincoln Financial Field to take on the defending Super Bowl champions.