Wild Card Round Preview: Seattle Seahawks at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Given everything that has happened this season, it is truly remarkable that the Eagles are even playing football this weekend. This team has suffered through injuries to just about every impact player, incredible inconsistencies and a mind-numbing amount of situations where they’ve shot themselves in the foot.

Yet, here they are. They’ve overcome everything, with help from a historically bad division, to win the NFC East.

Because of their division title, the Eagles will be playing at home on wild card weekend. They will be hosting the Seattle Seahawks, the first of two wild card teams in the NFC.

Philadelphia has won four in a row after a bad loss to the Miami Dolphins. Meanwhile, the Seahawks have lost three of their last four, including two straight home losses to division foes.

Seattle and Philadelphia have already played once this season. The Seahawks bested the Eagles 17-9 at the Linc in mid-November. It was one of the ugliest games I’ve ever watched.

Expect this game to look different from the last meeting.

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Week 17 Preview: Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

About a month ago, I declared that the Eagles season would be over with a loss to the Miami Dolphins. Boy was I wrong.

Morale was certainly low after that dreadful loss to the lowly Dolphins. However, the Eagles have proved everyone wrong since, including me.

After the Birds biggest win of the season against the disappointing Dallas Cowboys, they find themselves in the driver’s seat in the NFC East.

It’s simple: win, and you’re in. Lose, and fate is out of your hands. If the Eagles were to break our collective hearts and lose to the lowly Giants, they would need the Cowboys to lose at home to Washington in order to make the playoffs.

As much as I do love me some chaos in the last week of the regular season, I’d rather the Eagles avoid any and all things chaotic this week. A stress-free blowout of the Giants in New York would be ideal.

Unfortunately for us fans, the Eagles are allergic to blowouts. So, this game will likely be unnecessarily close, much like the week 14 match-up between these two teams.

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Week 16 Preview: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Well, this is it. The Eagles have somehow stayed alive long enough to make it to this game with it still holding significant meaning.

It's as simple as this: win this game, you control your own destiny and take sole possession of first place in the NFC East. Lose this game, and you’ll be watching your most-hated rival celebrate their division title in your house.

When the schedule first came out, everyone circled this game and said this would be for the division. We were right, we just didn’t realize how pathetic both teams would be.

I am a lot more confident in the Birds today than I was at the beginning of the week. Whether that has to do with me getting caught up in the whole hoopla of the week or the actual football aspect still remains to be seen.

But c’mon, how could you not get lost in the aura of the game when the Eagles tweet out videos like this.

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The Top Ten Eagles-Cowboys Moments of All-Time

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Eagles vs. Cowboys: the most bitter rivalry in Philadelphia sports. Always has been, and always will be.

Ask any true, hardcore Eagles fan what team they hate the most, and they will say Dallas, probably followed by a an expletive or two.

For the fans, the hatred is there. It has always been there. It will always be there. You know why? Because this hatred spans generations. It’s a family thing.

I’m willing to bet that one of the first memories that any Eagles fan has is having a relative tell you that “Dallas sucks.” It’s certainly mine.

I remember so vividly the day that my Mom-Mom, who is one of the biggest Eagles fans I’ve ever known, told me for the first time about her displeasure of the Dallas Cowboys. I’ve never seen anyone hate anything the way she hates that stupid star, and I could hear the way she despised everything about the Cowboys just from the way she said “Dallas.”

So you see, this hatred goes so far beyond the players, the teams, the coaches and even the fans of today. This goes back decades. And this is how it all began.

Supposedly, it all began on December 10, 1967. Cowboy defender Lee Roy Jordan delivered an elbow to Eagles running back Timmy Brown, the Eagles best player at the time, that was so dirty that it cost Brown nine teeth. According to an interview Brown did with the Philadelphia Inquirer in 2013, it was “The dirtiest hit I ever had...That started the rivalry.”

That play, combined with all of the hoopla that is “America’s Team”, has created a dynamic of such unique despise between the two fan bases and teams ever since.

Since the rivalry was officially considered “on” almost exactly 52 years ago, there have been plenty of moments that Eagles fan will cherish forever because of this rivalry. Take a stroll down memory lane and relive the ten best moments of the greatest rivalry in Philadelphia sports.

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Week 15 Preview: Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

The Birds are coming off a thrilling, comeback victory in overtime against the lowly New York Giants. I won’t complain though. At this point, a win is a win.

This week the Eagles travel to Landover, Maryland to play the Redskins in the Bird's home away from home: Fedex Field. My goodness that place is an embarrassment.

My bet is that you will never see the Linc like that. As for the Redskins as a football team, well, they are about as good as their stadium.

Leave it to the Eagles to make them look better than they actually are, though. Even after a big win last week, I simply cannot bring myself to be sold on this team.

That being said, with the Cowboys being just as bad, the Eagles find themselves tied for first place in the woeful NFC East. They kept themselves in it with a win last week, and need to win again on Sunday to make sure they stay right where they are.

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Week 14 Preview: New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Every time I think that the season might be over, the Cowboys just lose again and keep the Eagles life support plugged in.

After an absolutely humiliating loss to the lowly Miami Dolphins last Sunday, the Eagles return home for a Monday night match-up with the rival New York Giants.

The Giants are not good. I’d say that the Eagles should beat this team, but the Eagles are also not good.

I’m done with the excuses. I don’t want to hear it. I’m done with the “They would have a better record if the receivers could catch.” I’m so over it. At this point in the season, you are what your record says you are. The Eagles are 5-7. At this point in time, they are a bad football team.

Also, what self-respecting head coach has the nerve to say that a 2-9 Dolphin team made more plays because they “wanted it more.” Really? A two win team wanted it more than a team fighting for a playoff spot? If that’s really the case, then that lack of effort is on you, Dougie P. I’m so sick of it. Figure it out.

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Week 13 Preview: Philadelphia Eagles at Miami Dolphins

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

If the Eagles lose this game, fire everyone. The season will be officially over with a loss this week.

Okay, technically it wouldn’t be, but if Philadelphia loses to this Miami team, who are as close to openly tanking as a team could be, then the Eagles don’t deserve to even sniff the playoffs.

The Eagles are coming off of a loss that was as humiliating as any loss in the Coach Pederson era. While Seattle is a good team, the Eagles had plenty of opportunities to win the game. The defense was spectacular, the offense was anemic.

Label this week’s game a “get right” game for the Eagles offense. Miami is 2-9 and trotting out players that probably shouldn’t even be on an NFL roster; very process Sixer esque.

This is the beginning of a five game stretch that is the softest schedule the league has to offer to close the season. Because of that, as well as Dallas’ ineptitude, the Eagles still have a strong chance to win the division. That won’t matter if the Birds don’t win this week.

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Week 12 Preview: Seattle Seahawks at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Coming off a tough loss last week to New England, the Eagles play host to another elite team in the 8-2 Seattle Seahawks.

This battle of the birds has been dominated by the Seahawks in recent years. The Eagles have defeated Seattle just once out of seven contests since 2005.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: the Eagles are playing another huge game that some would consider a must-win. An Eagles loss this week coupled with a Dallas victory would be crippling to the Eagles playoff chances.

With the way the Eagles have played throughout this season, would anyone really be surprised if this team misses out on the postseason? I sure wouldn’t.

Playoff teams play well consistently. Playoff teams keep their best players healthy and on the field. Playoff teams catch the football. The Eagles do none of those three things. These reasons, as well as a multitude of other reasons, are why the Eagles are sitting on the outside, looking in on the postseason.

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Week Eleven Preview: New England Patriots at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

Eagles vs. Patriots. Those three words are enough to stir up the emotions of any Eagles fan. You know exactly where you were, who you were with and how long you cried tears of joy the last time these two teams played.

While this Sunday’s edition of Eagles-Pats doesn’t hold nearly the same weight of the last match-up, it is a very important game for the Birds.

The Eagles head into Sunday on a two-game winning streak off their bye in the thick of the playoff race. Yet, it doesn’t feel like it. Why?

To me, it’s a combination of reasons. One would be that with a 5-4 record, this team is not where we anticipated they would be in the beginning of the season. Another would be the excessive amount of injuries to key players this team has suffered (DeSean Jackson, Nigel Bradham, Jason Peters, Alshon Jeffery).

The final, but most significant reason, at least in my opinion, is that even with all of those factors, the Eagles performances have been quite, dare I say, underwhelming. They are a 5-4 team that could easily be 7-2 if their receivers could catch the football. They’ve had some extremely disappointing losses coupled with some wins that hardly felt like wins considering the way they played.

I know, a win is a win. But if this team expects to be competing for a playoff spot, I’m going to need to see some more convincing performances from the entirety of the team. Not only that, but it needs to be more consistent. It’s time for the Birds to make a run.

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Week Nine Preview: Chicago Bears at Philadelphia Eagles

By Matt Szczypiorski, Sports Talk Philly Contributing Writer

The Eagles are coming off an impressive win at the perfect time. They are looking to build off the momentum of last week and carry it into Sunday afternoon’s home match-up with the reeling Chicago Bears. Finally, a home game.

The Eagles are in a tough situation. With their record at 4-4, they find themselves looking up at teams in the playoff race. However, they are certainly within reach of a playoff spot, especially with the season only half over.

With that being said, if they want to remain in the thick of the playoff hunt, Sunday’s game is the type of game they cannot afford to lose. After this week and the bye week next week, the Eagles have two huge home games against the NFL’s elite: the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks.

Chicago is in desperation mode right now. They sit at 3-4, bad enough for last in the highly competitive NFC North. Worse than that is the fact that they have played such uninspiring football. The 2019 Bears look like a shell of the Bears team the Eagles faced in the playoffs just last season.

With the Bears hanging by a thread, the Eagles need to kick them while they’re down. The Birds need to take advantage of a team playing with an extreme lack of confidence.

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