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Notebook: Bracing For High-Octane Attack

The Falcons travel to Philadelphia this week boasting the league's top-ranking scoring offense and a balanced approach with top-10 rankings in both rushing and passing yards. The Eagles, meanwhile, are in the top six defensively in points allowed, total yards allowed and pass defense.

Here is a quick recap of what some of the players said ahead of the matchup with the NFC South division leaders.

Cox: This Is The Best Offense We Will Face

This Sunday's game will be the defense's third test against a top-four team in terms of yards gained this season. Atlanta is No. 2 in the NFL ahead of NFC East rivals Dallas (No. 3) and Washington (No. 4).

Which one does Pro Bowl defensive tackle Fletcher Cox think is the best?

"I think this is the best offense that we will face all year," Cox said of Atlanta's offense.

The NFC Defensive Player of the Month registered four sacks in his first four games. He's been held without a sack since, although he did post seven quarterback hurries.

"I got them early, now I've hit a wall," Cox admitted. "I've just got to keep pushing and put myself in position to get there."

Sacks are nice, but something would be even better.

"The most important thing to me is winning the football game," Cox said. "The sacks, the numbers, I don't really get all that caught up into that because those things will come."

Wentz Dealing With An Illness?

The Eagles have lost four games by a combined 19 points this season. Philadelphia had a chance on offense to either tie or take the lead late in each of those contests. On Sunday against the Giants, the Eagles had the ball at the New York 17-yard line down by five points with 1:41 left in the game. However, quarterback Carson Wentz threw four incomplete passes and the game was over.

"We're sick to our stomach with where we're at right now with all of these close games," Wentz said. "We're tired of learning. We have to go out and execute and show that we have learned from them."

On the fourth-down pass, Wentz threw the ball into the end zone for wide receiver Jordan Matthews, who ran a slot fade route. Matthews turned toward his left for the ball, but it was thrown too far outside and the two were unable to connect.

During Wednesday's practice, they practiced the throw and scored the touchdown on the play. It may be of little solace now, but Matthews wants that play to be a staple of the Eagles' offense akin to the back-shoulder fade that quarterback Aaron Rodgers throws to wide receiver Jordy Nelson in Green Bay.

Jordan Hicks: Playmaker Extraordinaire

In New Jersey on Sunday, linebacker Jordan Hicks recorded an interception, giving him one in back-to-back games for the first time in his career. It was also the fourth interception of Hicks' career. Hicks is the fifth NFL linebacker to record at least four interceptions in his first 16 games since 1999.

"I've always considered myself a playmaker stemming from high school all the way up. I've always been in position to make plays and I take a lot of pride in making the plays when they do come," Hicks said.

Hicks credited the work done off the field for his on-field success.

"A lot of that is attributed to film study," Hicks said. "If you don't put the work in, you're not going to be in those positions."

In addition to the four interceptions, Hicks has also forced a fumble and recovered four more since he was selected by the Eagles in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft. Atlanta enters this game with just seven giveaways on the season, which is tied for eighth fewest in the league.

"Big, big challenge," Hicks said. "But when we've had those challenges, we've risen up to them. Excited to see the way we're going to play. Obviously, we're back in the Linc. Brings the energy. I'm excited about it. We're all ready."

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