Doug Pederson seems to have taken all the good stuff from Andy Reid, yet none of the bad stuff. We’ll be able to validate that statement even more if the Eagles are able to win after the bye week. Reid was something like 12-1 with the Eagles after the bye when he was here, so if Doug can continue that trend, I think he’d make a lot of people happy in the Delaware Valley. So without further adieu, your Week 5 preview and prediction.
Without sounding like a total homer, I expect the Eagles offense to come out firing and have a pretty nice day. The Lions are without top pass rusher Ziggy Ansah and defensive leader, DeAndre Levy. Darius Slay is a helluva cornerback for the Lions, but he mainly lines up outside. This means that Jordan Matthews and Zach Ertz should be able to work the middle of the field and find success early and often. Between getting an extra week of preparation, Zach Ertz being healthy, and the injuries for the Lions, I think the Eagles offense should have another impressive day.
Bottom Line: Eagles hand 30 points on the Lions with Carson Wentz throwing for 270 and 2 scores. One to each Matthews and Ertz. Ryan Mathews also should come back with a strong effort and seize control of the starting RB job…for now.
The biggest reason I expect the Eagles to win today is this, they will make Detroit one dimensional. The Lions have struggled to run the ball consistently over the recent years, and nothing has changed this year. They lost their starting RB, Ameer Abudallah, early on and now have their receiving back (Theo Riddick) trying to be an every down back. I fully expect Marvin Jones to have a solid game as he sits at second in receiving yards in the NFL after 4 games, but it won’t be enough. The Eagles will have the Lions passing constantly and the front four will have their ears pinned back ready to get after Matthew Stafford. Don’t forget Jim Schwartz coached some of these guys and wants to continue his defensive dominance and Stephen Tulloch was on the Lions roster 4 months ago, advantage Eagles.
Bottom Line: Fletcher Cox will continue his dominance after a bye week, the secondary will get a nice boost with Leodis McKelvin coming back, and I expect Jordan Hicks to have a nice game. The Lions will play tough and put up some points, but I don’t think 20 points will be enough.
Prediction: Eagles 30, Lions 20. Wentz and Doug make history as the first rookie Coach and QB to start 4-0.
Offense: Jordan Matthews, 7 catches, 108 yards, 1 touchdown.
Defense: Rodney McLeod, 6 tackles and a turnover or big play.