3 Takeaways from Eagles' Week 13 Win

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IIDecember 6, 2021

3 Takeaways from Eagles' Week 13 Win

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    Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    It's never easy for a team to win in the NFL without its starting quarterback. And with Jalen Hurts out due to an ankle injury, the Philadelphia Eagles had to call on their backup signal-caller for the Week 13 matchup against the New York Jets.

    Fortunately for the Eagles, their No. 2 quarterback is Gardner Minshew, who has enjoyed past successes and found a way to lead Philadelphia to more on Sunday.

    The 25-year-old threw for 242 yards and two touchdowns in the 33-18 victory over the Jets at MetLife Stadium. Philadelphia improved to 6-7 while bouncing back from a Week 12 loss to the New York Giants to claim a fourth win in six weeks.

    The Eagles trailed 18-14 midway through the second quarter, but they went on to score 19 unanswered points while holding the Jets scoreless for the final 39 minutes and 22 seconds.

    Here are three takeaways from Philadelphia's Week 13 win.

Minshew Steps Up in Big Way When Called Upon

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    Seth Wenig/Associated Press

    After getting traded from the Jacksonville Jaguars to the Eagles in August, Minshew had thrown only two passes through the first 12 weeks of the season. But it's clear he had stayed prepared in case he got an opportunity to start.

    Minshew was effective, completing 20 of his 25 passing attempts while helping Philadelphia amass 418 total yards. The Eagles scored on each of their first seven drives, which included the quarterback throwing a touchdown pass to Dallas Goedert on each of their first two, before they had to punt on their eighth and final possession of the day.

    It was a dominant performance by Philadelphia's offense, and head coach Nick Sirianni was impressed by the play of Minshew.

    "He went out there and played a really outstanding game," Sirianni said, per Dave Spadaro of the team's official site. "I'm really happy for Gardner and the game he played."

    Hurts is still going to be the Eagles' starting QB when he's healthy, but perhaps there are some things he can learn from the way Minshew and the offense operated on Sunday. They did a lot of things well, and it could provide a blueprint for future success, no matter who is under center.

Goedert Rebounds with Impressive Performance

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    Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    Goedert became Philadelphia's clear-cut No. 1 tight end when Zach Ertz was traded to the Arizona Cardinals earlier in the season.

    And the Eagles made it known that the 26-year-old is going to be their tight end for a long time when they signed him to a four-year, $57 million extension in November.

    Still, Goedert hadn't scored a touchdown since Week 4. He also had some quiet games, such Philadelphia's Week 12 loss to the New York Giants in which he had only one catch and no yards.

    But the South Dakota State product was at his best against the Jets. He hauled in both of Minshew's touchdown passes to double his 2021 total and notch the first multi-touchdown game of his career. He had six catches for a career-high 105 yards.

    That's the type of production the Eagles will hope to see from Goedert more often in the future. And considering his age, there's a good chance he'll have more games like this.

Eagles in Thick of NFC Playoff Race Ahead of Bye Week

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    Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    Week 14 is the final week of the season in which there will be teams on a bye, and the Eagles are one of the four that won't be in action.

    Although they're below .500 at 6-7 heading into their week off, they can be pleased about the fact that they remain in the thick of the NFC playoff race.

    Philadelphia is only a half-game behind the Washington Football Team and the San Francisco 49ers, which are both 6-6 and currently the respective Nos. 6 and 7 seeds in the NFC. If those two teams lose in Week 14, the Eagles will be in an even better position.

    When Philadelphia returns to action, it will conclude the regular season with four straight games against NFC East rivals. It plays Washington in Weeks 15 and 17, and it will also face New York (Week 16) and Dallas (Week 18). So there's still the potential for a division shakeup.

    But even if the Eagles can't catch the Cowboys for the NFC East crown, they're in a good spot to contend for a wild-card berth. And considering they were 2-5 at the end of Week 7, it's impressive that they've gotten themselves back into the postseason hunt.

    It's possible Philadelphia will fall short, but it at least has a chance to make things interesting.