NFC championship game preview

Official Eagles Reporter

By Roxaane Herrera//@rxnlzbth

 

Both NFC divisional games were the edge of your seat entertaining. It was heartbreaking for the Saints.  Neither team lost by a mile, neither lost embarrassingly, neither lost because of mistakes (well, that can be subjective, I guess).  Both teams played great football and did everything they could to win. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough and now we are near the end of a spectacular season.

I mean, who predicted the Jacksonville Jaguars would actually make it this far?

Luckily for me, I predicted the Philadelphia Eagles would be here. It’s usually more of an emotional prediction, but from the beginning of this season, I predicted that this team will be in the playoffs.  And not just a one-and-done type like a few years ago.

Even without quarterback Carson Wentz, which obviously no one saw coming, the Eagles still have a chance, especially against the Minnesota Vikings.  I don’t say that to sound like I’m knocking the Vikings.  I mean it in the sense that the teams are much more evenly matched all the way around. The Falcons are an older team with a possible Hall of Famer in QB Matt Ryan.  They were playing with a chip on their shoulder all season long because of the heartbreaking ending to last year’s Super Bowl appearance.

The Vikings also have a journeyman quarterback leading them.  I think both offenses match well and I think this game will come down to the defense on both sides. I noticed that the Eagles offensive line has drastically improved and have been doing an amazing job in protecting their quarterback, Nick Foles. 

He was able to come back after a disastrous first half and drive the team down the field a few times, letting the defense catch their breath. If they are able to do that again for Foles, he’ll have another great game. He’ll probably score more than once as has a lot of receivers to choose from.

Ultimately, it’s going to come down to defense. Vikings were able to hold the New Orleans Saints scoreless for the first half before QB Drew Brees did what Brees does.  Obviously, Foles isn’t at Brees’s level, but he’ll do enough to keep the offense afloat before defense just completely tears through the Viking’s front line. I think cornerback Ronald Darby did a great job last week.  But he and the entire secondary are going to have to play a lot smarter and think quicker, in order to contain their wide-outs.  They can’t let Keenum add huge yardage numbers drive and drive.

 

PREDICTION:

Eagles: 28         Vikings: 24

 

Talk Eagles with Roxaane on Twitter @rxnlzbth

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