More Sports:

July 26, 2023

10 reasons the Eagles will win the Super Bowl

Will the Eagles avenge their Super Bowl LVII loss? Here are 10 reasons why they will.

Eagles NFL
051223JalenHurtsNickSirianni Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

Jalen Hurts and Nick Sirianni

Last month, we listed 10 reasons why the Philadelphia Eagles' 2023 season could go badly as part of our Dumpster Fire series. If I'm being honest, it was difficult coming up with 10 reasons. Here we'll do the opposite, as we'll take a look at 10 reasons why the Eagles will win the Super Bowl.

1) Jalen Hurts is good

This time last year, we didn't know if Jalen Hurts was good. Now... we can definitively say that he is. #Analysis.

The Eagles went 14-1 (plus 2-1 in the playoffs) in games Hurts started. Including the playoffs, he threw 25 TDs vs. 6 INTs as a passer, and he rushed for 903 yards and 18 TDs, cementing his status as a star player and the face of the franchise.

Yes, Hurts has premier weapons in the passing game and an elite offensive line, but it was his dual threat ability that made the Eagles' offense the unstoppable force that it was for most of the 2022 season.

The scary part for other NFC teams is that Hurts is a tireless worker who wants to be great and should only improve on the mental side of the position.

2) They have the best offensive line in the NFL

This is pretty obviously an elite offensive line:

 Jordan MailataLandon Dickerson Jason Kelce Cam Jurgens or Tyler Steen Lane Johnson 

There's some uncertainly as to who will start at RG, but whoever wins that job will be sandwiched in between a pair of future Hall of Famers in Jason Kelce and Lane Johnson.

I suppose another concern is that Kelce is 35 (he'll turn 36 in November), while Johnson turned 33 in May. Is there more risk for injury or decline? Sure, however, Kelce was (rightfully) named First-Team All-Pro in five of the last six seasons, and he hasn't missed a start since the 2014 season. Meanwhile, Johnson played as well as he ever has in 2022, and he shut down Nick Bosa in the NFC Championship Game while playing with a painful adductor injury. Even if there is some decline from either player, it's not as if they're likely to fall off a cliff.

On the left side, Mailata and Dickerson are road grading bullies who are a big part of the Eagles' outstanding rushing attack.

3) They have the best WR1/WR2/TE1 trio in the NFL

In 2019, Alshon Jeffery led all Eagles wide receivers with 490 receiving yards. In 2020, it was Travis Fulgham, with 539 receiving yards. 🤢

Those days are over, as the Eagles have a top 3 wide receiver duo in A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith, as well as an ultra-efficient tight end in Dallas Goedert to complement them.

 2022Rec Yards YPC TD 
 A.J. Brown88 1496 17.0 11 
 DeVonta Smith95 1196 12.6 
 Dallas Goedert55 702 12.8 

Both Brown and Smith can win at all three levels of the defense, while Goedert leads the league the last two seasons combined in yards per target. That's not just among all tight ends to be clear, it's among all players.

There's isn't a better WR1/WR2/TE1 combo in the NFL.

4) They are loaded with great edge rushers

The Eagles are stacked on the edges.

• If we're including the playoffs, there arguably wasn't a better pass rusher in the NFL last season than Haason Reddick, who racked up 19.5 sacks and 6 forced fumbles in 2022.

• On the other side, Josh Sweat is a budding star player who has had improved production every season of his career, and he finished with 11 sacks in 2022.

• Brandon Graham is coming off his highest sack production season in 2022, when he had 11 of them coming off a 2021 Achilles tear. He's a year older (now 35), but he's also healthier than he was a year ago.

• And for good measure, the Eagles added the extremely athletic Nolan Smith to their pass rusher stable with the 30th overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

There isn't a team in the NFL that has a more enviable edge rusher quartet.

On the interior, the Eagles have been loading up on young and talented players in the draft, most notably in Jordan Davis, Jalen Carter, and Milton Williams. That is an unproven group to varying degrees but their collective upside is high.

5) The running backs are more talented, with diverse skill sets

Over the last two seasons, the Eagles have led the NFL in rushing yards (5224) and rushing TDs (57). The No. 2 team in rushing TDs? The 49ers, with 42.

That was mostly with Miles Sanders and Jalen Hurts. There's a good argument that newcomers D'Andre Swift and Rashaad Penny are both more talented than Sanders. Swift is an explosive, shifty runner with receiving chops, while Penny is a 220-pound power back with impressive breakaway speed. There are durability concerns (which is maybe understating it a bit with Penny), but that duo — along with Kenny Gainwell poised to make a jump in Year 3 — have a chance to be special in an already elite rushing offense.

6) They have one of the best cornerback starting trios in the NFL

There's some reasonable concern that (a) Darius Slay's play fell off some in the back half of the season in 2022, (b) James Bradberry's play in 2022 is unsustainable, and (c) Avonte Maddox has durability issues.

But it's also still very clearly one of the best cornerback trios in the NFL.

7) Solid depth at the most important positions

The Eagles have some depth concerns at linebacker and outside wide receiver, but they have quality depth where it really matters (quarterback, and the trenches). Most teams have glaring concerns at multiple starting spots, much less their depth.

8) Jonathan Gannon is gone

Over the last two seasons, the Eagles' defense was consistently able to suffocate opposing offenses with bad quarterbacks. However, when the opponent had someone competent at QB, they were typically able to slice and dice Gannon's defense via death by a thousand paper cuts, working the short-to-intermediate areas of the field, and holding onto the football for long, frustrating scoring drives. Meaningful adjustments were rarely made.

Off the field, Gannon proclaimed that he was returning to Philly after the NFC Championship Game, and then he proceeded to engage in improper contact with the Cardinals, trying to close a deal to become their new head coach while the rest of the staff was busy, you know, preparing for the Super Bowl

He also made up a weird story about a back-and-forth with Philly media that never happened, which leads me to believe that he probably also either made up or embellished a story about an interaction with an Eagles fan within this article (the "dog cussed" part).

We'll see in time if Sean Desai is an upgrade on Gannon or not, but Gannon was a fraud and it's good that he's gone.

9) Clutch kicker

I think that Jake Elliott gets overlooked sometimes when Eagles fans count their blessings. He is a perfect 15 of 15 on field goals in the playoffs, including the biggest kick in Eagles history in the Super Bowl.

Over the last two seasons (playoffs included), he has made 54 of 60 (0.900) field goal attempts (8 of 9 from 50+), and is 108 of 110 (0.982) on PATs. Stud.

10) The NFC stinks

Earlier this week, we published a ranking of the NFL's starting quarterbacks from 1-32. Here's that list, with the NFC quarterbacks bolded:

  1. Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs
  2. Joe Burrow, Bengals
  3. Josh Allen, Bills
  4. Jalen Hurts, Eagles
  5. Trevor Lawrence, Jaguars
  6. Justin Herbert, Chargers
  7. Aaron Rodgers, Jets
  8. Lamar Jackson, Ravens
  9. Tua Tagovailoa, Dolphins
  10. Matthew Stafford, Rams
  11. Dak Prescott, Cowboys
  12. Deshaun Watson, Browns
  13. Kirk Cousins, Vikings
  14. Derek Carr, Saints
  15. Jared Goff, Lions
  16. Justin Fields, Bears
  17. Russell Wilson, Broncos
  18. Bryce Young, Panthers
  19. Geno Smith, Seahawks
  20. Ryan Tannehill, Titans
  21. Jimmy Garoppolo, Raiders
  22. Daniel Jones, Giants
  23. Brock Purdy, 49ers
  24. Jordan Love, Packers
  25. Kenny Pickett, Steelers
  26. C.J. Stroud, Texans
  27. Mac Jones, Patriots
  28. Anthony Richardson, Colts
  29. Baker Mayfield, Buccaneers
  30. Desmond Ridder, Falcons
  31. Sam Howell, Commanders
  32. Colt McCoy, Cardinals

You may quibble a little over the order, as we all do with quarterback rankings, but we can agree that the above isn't some ridiculous Chris Simms or Cian Fahey (remember him?) list, right? 

Anyway, there aren't many NFC quarterbacks at the top of that list. There are a lot of them in the 20's and 30's.

There are some good-not-great teams, like the 49ers and Cowboys, and some potential up-and-comers, like the Seahawks and Lions, but the majority of the best teams in the NFL reside in the AFC.

Follow Jimmy & PhillyVoice on Twitter: @JimmyKempski | thePhillyVoice

Like us on Facebook: PhillyVoice Sports

Add Jimmy's RSS feed to your feed reader