2013 Week-by-Week Predictions for the Philadelphia Eagles
I come to you today from the future.
Instead of using this newfound knowledge to choose winning lottery numbers, prevent widespread disasters or start my own psychic hotline, I figured I'd do the only reasonable thing: share with you the results of each Philadelphia Eagles' game.
Considering the sports fans in Philly haven't witnessed a playoff team—or a winning record—in nearly a year and a half, the result is an unprecedented level of anticipation for a football squad coming off a 4-12 season and whose biggest offseason acquisition was the coach itself.
Therefore, by revealing how the season will play out may, in fact, quell any potential disasters, at least in the Delaware Valley.
The following is what I've seen will occur in each Eagle contest.
Disclaimer: It's very likely these visions of the future were either dreams or fantasies. Regardless, enjoy!
Week 1: At Washington Redskins
Robert Griffin III picks up where he left off in 2012 and has his way with the Eagles' defense in his return from an ACL injury.
The Birds also have a carryover from last year: red zone struggles.
Michael Vick and crew keep up for a while, but the inability to consistently punch the ball in from inside the 20 turns out to be Philly's demise, including a costly fumble by Riley Cooper when he gets tripped by teammate and best buddy Cary Williams while running down the sideline.
Result: Redskins 31, Eagles 26
Week 2: San Diego Chargers
So who benefits most from new head coach Chip Kelly's read-option offense? Without a doubt, LeSean McCoy.
With a new and long overdue emphasis on the ground game, "Shady" runs rampant on the Chargers' depleted front line, gaining more than 150 combined rushing and receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns, giving Kelly his first NFL victory.
Rookie linebacker Manti Te'o has three missed tackles. His imaginary girlfriend has four.
Result: Eagles 24, Chargers 14
Week 3: Kansas City Chiefs
It's a nostalgic day in Philadelphia, as Andy Reid makes his return and gets booed mercifully.
Meanwhile, on the day his jersey gets retired, Donovan McNabb gets a warm ovation, sans 30 drunken guys in the back bused in by a local radio station who were upset they weren't retiring Ricky Williams' number instead.
Afterward, Reid says he has to do a better job of putting his guys in a position to win. KC fans are reassured by his sincere and candid self-criticism.
Result: Eagles 31, Chiefs 17
Week 4: At Denver Broncos
Peyton Manning enters the game with a big string of drool hanging from his mouth upon studying the Eagles' secondary. Upon blinking, the Eagles find themselves behind 21-0.
Down early and forced to rely on the air attack, Vick gets picked off three times. While warming up on the sideline to replace him, Nick Foles also throws an interception, and Kelly changes his mind.
Result: Broncos 41, Eagles 17
Week 5: At New York Giants
A week after older brother Peyton torches the Eagles, Eli Manning once again breaks the hearts of Philly fans with a late game-winning touchdown drive. On the bright side, Victor Cruz injures himself during his celebratory end-zone salsa dance.
Afterward, father Archie Manning and oldest brother Cooper Manning talk to Tampa Bay about suiting up next week to continue the Manning mastery of the Birds.
Result: Giants 20, Eagles 15
Week 6: At Tampa Bay Buccaneers
This game is a defensive showdown as Mychal Kendricks has his coming-out party with a forced fumble, sack and interception, and Josh Freeman is constantly running for his life.
Meanwhile, the Eagles win yet again when a running back has more than 20 carries, and they have more rushing carries than passing attempts. Go figure.
Result: Eagles 13, Bucs 7
Week 7: Dallas Cowboys
DeSean Jackson wakes up, realizes the media hasn't been paying attention to him lately and decides it's time to go off and make a statement.
And so he does, with 10 receptions, 150 yards, a punt returned for a touchdown and, upon refusing to leave the field and jeopardize his face time, a field goal for good measure.
Meanwhile, the only score Tony Romo has is the phone number an Eagles cheerleader slips him as he walks off to the locker room.
Result: Eagles 19, Cowboys 16
Week 8: New York Giants
The Mannings continue to make themselves unwelcome in Philly.
Eli Manning and gang break the hearts of Eagle fans all over, winning on a last-second field goal. Wearing a pained scowl during the postgame conference, Tom Coughlin swears this is his happy face.
For salt on the wound, Vick gets knocked out of the game (so whoever had Week 8 in the pool for that to occur, congratulations).
Result: Giants 23, Eagles 21
Week 9: At Oakland Raiders
An ugly game against an ugly team.
In Nick Foles' season debut as starting quarterback, he struggles a bit but finally regains his composure enough to lead the offense down the field in the final minutes for a game-winning score to Brent Celek.
The Raiders also continue their issues behind center, as the fifth QB to take a snap this season—Section 212, Row H, Seat 2—gets sacked six times and turns it over twice.
Result: Eagles 16, Raiders 9
Week 10: At Green Bay Packers
With a better effect and worse result this week, the Birds surprise Aaron Rodgers and the Pack by keeping it close.
Foles redeems himself by throwing more than 300 yards and managing a good game, but in the end, the defense is unable to contain rookie running back Eddie Lacy, who runs amok and again exposes the ineffectiveness of the art of ankle tackling.
Result: Packers 28, Eagles 24
Week 11: Washington Redskins
In the last game before a long-awaited bye week, the Eagles exact their revenge on the Skins, as the new three-headed monster of McCoy, Bryce Brown and Chris Polk combine for more than 200 yards on the ground.
Damaris Johnson—who, along with Brown and Vick, attended the Chip Kelly School of Protecting the Football—also takes a kickoff to the house.
Result: Eagles 20, Redskins 14
Week 13: Arizona Cardinals
After successfully not losing during the bye week, the inevitable letdown game occurs.
Larry Fitzgerald has a field day with the Birds' secondary, going off for eight receptions, 170 yards and two touchdowns. What's more disappointing is that I fail to start him that week on my fantasy team.
The one thing Reid consistently excelled out during his tenure was the win after a bye, but unfortunately, it does not trickle over. And there's something inexplicable about the Eagles' ability at pooping the bed when playing the Cardinals.
Result: Cardinals 27, Eagles 13
Week 14: Detroit Lions
Vick returns, and so does the offense—with a vengeance.
A big lead gets shrunken by the end, but the Birds prevail with the assistance of 300 passing and 100 rushing yards from No. 7, who openly declares in the postgame conference that the read-option has resurrected his career, turned the team into contenders and may even cure certain forms of cancer.
Result: Eagles 34, Lions 31
Week 15: At Minnesota Vikings
Kelly continues to play mix and match with a disappointing front three, who have generally failed at plugging the gaps. To combat this, he mandates a strict McDonald's diet for all defensive linemen moving forward.
Result: Vikings 14, Eagles 6
Week 16: Chicago Bears
Heading down the final stretch, steady unsung hero Jason Avant and rookie sensation Zach Ertz—who has essentially supplanted Celek as the No. 1 tight end—lead the way.
With just a game to play at 8-7, the Eagles are actually still playoff contenders, as calculator sales rise dramatically across the Philadelphia area, with fans exploring all possible scenarios where their team can slip into the postseason.
Result: Eagles 23, Bears 15
Week 17: At Dallas Cowboys
Final game of the regular season. Playoffs on the line. And all of it comes down to a match against the hated Cowboys.
Football is once again relevant in Philly!
However, hearts will be broken, hopes will be dashed and all the poser Cowboy fans in the area who don't even know where Dallas is will gloat at work the next day and be treated for facial abrasions later that afternoon.
When all is said and done, youth will not overtake experience as Jason Witten does what he always does to the Birds: obliterates them.
Result: Cowboys 29, Eagles 17
So, there you have it: a .500 season. And I do accept commissions for all bets made.