The Philadelphia Eagles have been a mess over the past month of the season as the once presumed best team in the NFL dropped all the way to a wildcard slot. Part of the issue has been a series of injuries that has plagued their elite quarterback Jalen Hurts but another major component has been a serious lack of cohesion on both sides of the ball. Sometimes it just takes a personnel change to really boost team chemistry and luckily for Philadelphia they’re going to get just that.
Eagles WR Brown Out but Backup Given Opportunity
While a lot of people in Philadelphia are stressing about missing their number one receiver against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, it could actually be the best thing for the team. While receiver A.J. Brown has consistently been one of the better receivers in the NFL, he has become a major issue in terms of his personality meshing with the rest of his teammates. This season, Brown has ranked ninth in the NFL with a Pro Football Focus (PFF) overall score of 90.0 but he has been the center of a lot of drama during the teams losing streak.
With Brown out, wide receiver Quez Watkins is going to be starting in the wide receiver position for Philadelphia. In his limited time on the field this season, Watkins has managed a PFF grade of 60.5 as a receiver but part of that is the difficulty of finding a rhythm when you don’t get many opportunities on the field.
Watkins was selected in the sixth round of the 2020 NFL Draft out of the University of Southern Mississippi but will bring a different dynamic to the Philadelphia offense. While Brown provides Philadelphia an excellent target man for Hurts to just throw the ball up, Watkins will give another quick target similar to the other starting receiver Devonta Smith.
Philadelphia has suffered a brutal losing streak over the past month as the team lost five out of their last six while losing their foothold as the NFC East Champion. There has been speculation that Head Coach Nick Sirianni’s job is dependent on how well the team plays against the Buccaneers. There has been chatter that Sirianni has been less of a coach and more of a beneficiary of Doug Pederson’s hard work.
Philadelphia is going to have to exhibit their best game in the past month if they plan on having any hopes of defeating Tampa Bay. For example, the team was pulverized by the mediocre New York Giants roster and will be in desperate need of some positive event to rally around.
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