In Episode 1 of somebody in the NFC East needs a win this week, the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles kick off Week 7 on Thursday night.
Even though it’s a matchup of one-win teams, the stakes are surprisingly high. The winner of Thursday’s game, that can be live-streamed on the Yahoo Sports app, has a chance to finish Week 7 in at least a tie for first place in the division.
The 2-4 Dallas Cowboys currently hold that honor. And they look vulnerable in their matchup with 1-5 Washington on Sunday after Monday’s pitiful showing in a loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
Bottom line: There’s a reasonable chance that one of the teams playing on Thursday is a playoff team.
Can Eagles win, get healthy?
The Philadelphia Eagles seem like the best bet if they can manage to overcome the rash of injuries that have derailed their season. Running back Miles Sanders and tight end Zach Ertz are expected to be sidelined Thursday alongside multiple members of an offensive line plagued by injuries.
Sanders suffered a knee injury in Sunday’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens and is expected to miss at least Thursday. An ankle injury is expected to sideline Ertz for up to four weeks, according to ESPN.
Some potentially good news for Eagles
The good news for Philadelphia is that head coach Doug Pederson is “optimistic” about the status of tackle Lane Johnson and wide receivers Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson for Thursday’s game.
The return of any or all three injured players to the Eagles lineup will be a welcome sight for quarterback Carson Wentz, who hasn’t resembled anything close to his former Pro Bowl form in a difficult start to the season. Through six games of a 1-4-1 start, Wentz has completed a career-low 58.7 percent of his passes while throwing eight touchdowns and nine interceptions.
Daniel Jones continues to struggle
Things haven’t been any better in New York. Second-year quarterback Daniel Jones has done nothing to prove general manger Dave Gettleman right for rolling the dice with the No. 6 pick in the 2019 draft.
Through six games of a 1-5 start, Jones is completing 61.2 percent of his passes for 203.8 yards per game while tallying three touchdowns and six interceptions. It adds up to a 71 quarterback rating and the league’s 30th-ranked passing attack. Not great.
Jones doesn’t have much help in the backfield following Saquon Barkley’s season-ending ACL injury suffered. Recently signed Devonta Freeman appears to have taken the lead role in New York. He led the Giants rushing attack with 18 carries for 61 yards in Sunday’s win over Washington.
The best hope for New York is a defense that will be the best unit on the field Thursday night. The Giants rank a respectable 12th in the NFL in yards allowed per game and are coming off a game that saw them sack Washington quarterback Kyle Allen three times while forcing two turnovers.
It’s a unit that can cause problems for an Eagles offense decimated by injuries.
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