Good news and bad news, Eagles fans. The bad news is that our game-by-game season previews have come to an end, but the good news is that the Eagles' full roster reports for Training Camp in just nine days. That's right, we're down to single digits!
As you prepare for the start of an exciting new season, here are five things to watch for in the Eagles' final four-game stretch of 2014 ...
1. To Be The Best, You Have To Beat The Best
The Seattle Seahawks will have a target on them in every game that they play in 2014. That comes with the territory of winning the Super Bowl, but Eagles fans will have some extra motivation when the Seahawks come to town. The Eagles are coming off of a playoff season with hopes of taking another leap forward in 2014, so this game will go a long way towards showing the rest of the NFL how much of a contender they are. Also, the Seahawks pride themselves on have the loudest homefield advantage in the NFL, but with the new sections being added to Lincoln Financial Field to help enclose the stadium as part of the revitalization process, Eagles fans will surely be ready to show what a real 12th Man sounds like.
2. Texas Two-Step
A week after the Seahawks come to Philadelphia, it will be the Dallas Cowboys who come marching into Lincoln Financial Field. Of course, the Eagles and Cowboys also meet on Thanksgiving (November 27), meaning that the Seattle game is sandwiched by two confrontations with the divisional rival. Unlike last season, there won’t be a lot of time for the two sides to digest their first matchup as they prepare for a second helping. There may still even be Thanksgiving leftovers in your refrigerator by the time of the second meeting. What kind of adjustments will the teams make in two weeks time? We'll have to wait and see.
3. NFC East Three-Headed Monster
There are no breaks in the Eagles' 2014 schedule. They play the other 2013 NFC division champs and they also have to play the NFC West, which may be the toughest division in football. With all of that in mind, the toughest stretch of the season for the Eagles might come in the final three games. As the season comes down to the home stretch, the Eagles play Dallas, Washington and New York, respectively, in consecutive weeks. It’s very possible that the NFC East will come down to the wire, and if the Eagles can handle their business against their divisional rivals (as they did last season, going 4-2 in division), then they will likely be in good shape.
4. Finishing On The Road
As part of the final three-game stretch, the Eagles will play their last two regular season games on the road at Washington and New York. The Eagles went 6-2 on the road in 2013, including a perfect 3-0 against the NFC East. Winning on the road is never easy and neither is winning within the division. The Eagles will be tasked with doing both in the final two weeks of the season.
5. History Says …
Though historical numbers don’t mean much when it comes to playing the game at hand, it is fun to look back and see how the Eagles have performed down the stretch in recent history. Over the last five seasons, the Eagles have played well in their final four regular season games, winning 13 out of 20 games. Eagles fans are hoping that trend continues in 2014.