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Game Preview | Eagles vs. Cardinals

Miles Sanders
Miles Sanders

The Philadelphia Eagles (4-0) remain the lone undefeated team in the NFL this season. They take this undefeated record to the desert to take on the Arizona Cardinals (2-2), who are coming off a 10-point victory 26-16 over the Carolina Panthers.

Series Record

The all-time series record between these two teams is 56-60-5. The Eagles are seeking their first win at State Farm Stadium.

Cardinals Scouting Report

Offense

QB: Kyler Murray, fresh off receiving a new contract, is the leader of the Cardinals' offense. With star receiver DeAndre Hopkins still unable to play this week, the weapons surrounding Murray are not at full capacity. Murray has still been able to throw for 991 yards, five touchdowns, and two interceptions through the first four games of the 2022 season.

Murray has a strong arm but also has the added dimension of running ability. Those are traits he has capitalized on this season – to the tune of 24 rushes for 91 yards and two additional touchdowns. Much like Jalen Hurts, Murray is an all-around quarterback. The Eagles will need to contain him in this game to come out victorious.

RB: James Conner is the main back on the field for the Cardinals. With 45 carries through four games, Conner has taken the place of the departed Chase Edmonds. On top of his 45 carries for 145 yards, Conner has also caught 13 passes for 95 yards in the passing game. During times when Conner needs a rest, the other member of the backfield is Eno Benjamin. Although Benjamin has yet to find a true hold in the offense, the talent is there for a dangerous game.

WR: With DeAndre Hopkins suspended to start the season, the Arizona Cardinals traded a first-round pick on draft night for Marquise Brown. So far, this has been a valuable addition. In 2022, Brown trails only Davonte Adams in targets with 45. He has 30 receptions for 339 yards and two touchdowns on those targets. With injuries plaguing the Cardinals' pass game this season, he has been one constant.

Rondale Moore saw his first action of the season in Week 4 against the Carolina Panthers and while he was back, A.J. Green was forced to miss the week with his own knee injury. The Cardinals are hopeful Green can make it back for the game against the Eagles.

TE: Former Eagle Zach Ertz will be taking on his former team. Although injured to start the season, Ertz is off the injury report and could provide an important outlet for Kyler Murray as he avoids a Philadelphia pass rush.

Defense

Defensive Line: J.J. Watt anchors the defensive line for the Arizona Cardinals. Despite a personal health emergency last week, Watt was able to play Sunday and does not appear on the injury report this week. The same cannot be said for nose tackle. Rashard Lawrence, who is questionable for this game. If he is unable to go, it will fall on Leki Fotu to man the middle in the Cardinals' 3-4 defense.

Linebackers: The linebackers group for the Cardinals is led by do-it-all LB/S Isaiah Simmons. This unit is young but fast. It will be a challenge for the Eagles to keep them from interrupting the timing of Jalen Hurts when he drops back to find his receivers downfield.

Secondary: Byron Murphy provides a solid cornerback to matchup with the Eagles' receivers, and Budda Baker is still one of the best safeties in the NFL. This duo will make a formidable pair which Jalen Hurts will need to account for when passing the ball downfield.

Key Stats

3 – Miles Sanders has three touchdowns already through four games in 2022.

66.7% – Jalen Hurts has completed just short of 70% of his passes. Of his 82 completions, 59 of them have gone to A.J. Brown (25), DeVonta Smith (18), and Dallas Goedert (16).

16 – The Eagles have sacked opposing quarterbacks 16 times this season, most in the league.

8 – There have been only eight games in NFL history in which both quarterbacks in the matchup had 400+ offensive yds & 4+ touchdowns (including last matchup between Hurts & Murray), this will be just the fourth such quarterback rematch in NFL history.

9.1 – Hurts leads all qualified passers with 9.1 yards per pass attempt in 2022.

331.3 – Hurts has averaged 331.3 offensive (pass + rush) YPG in 2022 (2nd among QBs)

18 & 17 – Murray (18) & Hurts (17) rank 1st & 2nd in rush TD among QB since 2020

3.5 – Haason Reddick leads the Eagles with 3.5 sacks in 2022. He also leads NFL with 3 forced fumbles in 2022. He was signed in 2022 during free agency. His former team? The Arizona Cardinals.

Marquee Matchup

J.J. Watt vs. Lane Johnson is a key matchup this week. Although Watt is used to traveling, he is less prone to do so. This means he could take on Johnson for much of the game. This matchup may influence whether Hurts has the time needed to get the ball out of his hands or if he will be forced into unscripted scrambles.

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