Week 14 Quick Picks: Eagles vs. Saints

Credit: Groupe Canam; used via CC BY-SA 3.0

The Eagles, whose 3-8-1 record looks more like the combination to the keypad on a shed somewhere than a team record, are in about as bad a spot as they’ve been in their recent franchise history. The team needs something good – anything, really – to lift the spirits of the fans and everyone in the NovaCare Complex. Jalen Hurts will make his first NFL start on Sunday, and you’d love for him to do so against a team that’s also struggling, a team you have a legit chance to beat no matter who the quarterback is.

Who dat? Well, it ain’t the New Orleans Saints.

How exactly will it unfold? The guys share their insights below; John was given last week’s victory, so he will go first.

John (2-6-4): When this game was originally scheduled for a mid-afternoon start, the quarterback showcase was undoubtedly going to be a big part of the television coverage. Neither Drew Brees or Carson Wentz will start on Sunday. That is a break for both teams, as the Saints’ passing game is less prolific under Hill and Carson Wentz is a gift to opposing defenses in 2020. 

Jalen Hurts could be the second coming of Jeff Garcia and spark a late season playoff push, but it’s unlikely. Miles Sanders could finally get 20+ carries to take the burden off Hurts, but that’s a long shot. Alshon Jeffrey could redeem himself for his playoff miscue against the Saints… but that’s the least likely thing to happen on the field this week. 

The Eagles’ offense may be more interesting on Sunday, but there are a plethora of questions on this team beyond the quarterback. The Eagles’ defense will have to shoulder the load again. Look for Hurts to lean on Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert in a nail biter that could save their playoff chances if a few breaks fall their way.  Saints 27, Eagles 21.

Offensive Standout: Alvin Kamara

Defensive Standout: Malcolm Jenkins

Joe (6-2-4): I should have changed my name this week to “25 Or.”

I said on the most recent edition of the podcast that the reason I wasn’t super impressed by Jalen Hurts’ first extended appearance was that we had already seen Carson Wentz do everything he did; there was nothing new, nothing inspiring, to me at least, about his play. For that reason, I don’t expect this game to go any differently than it would if Wentz was under center (or in the shotgun, more likely) (and on the run for his life, most certainly).

Normally, I try to do some sort of analysis here, try to share something resembling a well-thought argument for why a game will go a certain way. I don’t think there’s a reason to do that this week. This could get real bad.

Jalen Hurts will be the quarterback on Sunday, but “Jalen Hurts” will also be a complete sentence by halftime. Saints 31, Eagles 6.

Offensive Standout: Michael Thomas

Defensive Standout: Trey Hendrickson

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