The Philadelphia Eagles have been the NFC’s best team since the very beginning of the season and have just one more obstacle in front of them to get back to the Super Bowl. It is Brock Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers. The Eagles are almost a field goal favorite going into the game after dominating the New York Giants last round.
Kickoff is set for 3 pm ET Sunday from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. The game will be televised nationally on FOX.
While the Eagles looked Unstoppable on Saturday night against the Giants, they are getting a very different challenge this week against a 49ers team that is not only coming into the game on a white-hot run, but also has very few weaknesses anywhere on its roster .
The one weakness the Eagles might be able to exploit: San Francisco’s difficulty with scrambling quarterbacks. Including the playoffs, the 49ers rank 19th in the league in success rate against quarterback runs (50 percent success rate), but have especially struggled against quarterback scrambles, where the success rate drops down to only 32 percent (26th in the league).
Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts is one of the best running quarterbacks in the league after accounting for 760 yards on the ground during the regular season. He is also one of the best short-yardage quarterbacks in the league being nearly Unstoppable on quarterback sneaks.
Including the playoffs, the Eagles have won each of Hurts’ past seven starts.
This will be another significant test for Purdy as he looks to continue his improbable run going from Mr. Irrelevant to potential Super Bowl starting quarterback. The 49ers are still undefeated in Purdy’s starts, while Sunday will be the first time they have been underdogs in any of those games.
Sunday’s game against Dallas was the first time Purdy went against one of the league’s top defenses this season, and it was probably his worst game of the year. But he was still good enough to win.
The 49ers also have an outstanding defense that has helped give their offense (and Purdy) some short fields to work with, but he has still done well when facing a long field. With Purdy, the 49ers have started 49 drives where they have been at least 70 yards away from the end zone. They still average 2.67 points per drive on such drives, the highest mark in the league during that stretch. The Eagles have been the second-best team in the league on such drives since then.
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(Photo of Christian McCaffrey: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)