In a rematch of the NFC Championship game from a year ago, both the Vikings and Eagles are looking to “right the ship” so to speak early this season. Both teams will be fired up for this one. Here are the crew’s predictions for the game:
ALEX WHITNEY (2-2)
The Vikings trot out one of the best WR duos the Eagles will face this year. Both are solid route runners and have the potential to break away. The secondary will need to stay home and improve vastly. Without Derek Barnett and possibly Fletcher Cox missing some of the game, if not all, the Eagles defense will need to become creative in creating QB pressure. Play calling should balance out a bit more this week. Cousins is historically good against the Eagles. Philly might be playing catchup all day unless the Eagles score early and often.
Final Prediction: Eagles 24, Vikings 28
JOE FABIANI (1-3)
The Eagles come into this week after a gut-wrenching loss to the Titans. They return home, which is good news for the Eagles; being that they’ve won their last 8 of 9 home games. Both the Eagles and Vikings are in desperate need of a win. Minnesota will be without their dynamic running back, Dalvin Cook, who has been limited so far this season with injuries. Which could lead to Minnesota leaning on their passing attack, that of which has been the Eagles defense’s achilles heel. The Eagles must be mindful of Stefon Diggs speed, as they have struggled to contain speed receivers to this point. However, the Eagles defense could be looking to make a statement after last week’s collapse. They will miss Derek Barnett, who will be missing his first start as a pro. Look for Michael Bennett to be more included in the game plan. I like the Eagles in this one simply because I believe the Vikings will have to be one dimensional all game.
Final Prediction: Eagles 24, Vikings 17
KEVIN MEANS (1-3)
Both of these teams are coming off of bad losses and expect them both to come out with their best efforts. Thielen and Diggs are going to give the Eagles secondary trouble but expect rookie Avante Maddox to take over the majority of safety play over Graham adding some playmaking ability to a struggling Eagle’s defense. Carson Wentz is getting his third start since tearing his ACL in 2017 and it comes against an underperforming Viking’s defense. They are going to try and bring the pressure like the Titans did last week but Wentz will be more prepared and could take advantage of it. It looks like this could be a very high scoring game but I believe the Viking’s wide receiver tandem of Diggs and Thielen will be too much to handle.
Final Prediction: Eagles 26, Vikings 31
TYLER EDGERTON (1-3)
Philadelphia will need to sure up their secondary miscues against a Vikings offense who has one of the best WR duos in the league. So far this season, Philadelphia has given up 81% of their total yards allowed through the air. With a banged up Dalvin Cook, I expect the Vikings to become one dimensional. The only question is whether the defense can finally get some pressure on Kirk Cousins who has surprisingly thrived against the Eagles in his career (16tds, 5ints, 99.7 QB rating). The offensive line desperately needs to pick up their production and protect Carson, especially against a defense who will be ready to prove that last January’s matchup was a fluke. Elliott could be the savior this week with a late FG.
Final Prediction: Eagles 20, Vikings 17
TYLER QUILL (1-3)
The Eagles head into this 2018 NFC Championship rematch against the Vikings still searching for their identity. In their last matchup, two dominant defenses entered and one took control early and the other was nonexistent. The Eagles took control and cruised to a 38-7 victory. This year neither team’s defense has delivered. The Eagles need a breakout game from their defense in order to take control. If this game turns into a shootout, the Eagles will be in trouble. Jim Schwartz will have his hands full game planning for the Minnesota playmakers Adam Thielen, Stephon Diggs, and RB Dalvin Cook. The Eagles defense always plays better at home and I think that will continue in Week 5. Now, this won’t be a dominant win like the NFC Championship Game, but I expect the Eagles to do enough to get the victory.
Final Prediction: Eagles 31, Vikings 28
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