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Doug Pederson, Eagles

3 reasons why the Philadelphia Eagles will still make the playoffs

The Philadelphia Eagles are treading water in the shallow end of the pool when they don’t have to. Can you blame them? The season has been full of ups and downs, injuries, inconsistency, and rumors. But still, even with those glaring issues, the team can still make the playoffs. Sitting at 5-5, all is not lost but it will take some great football, team chemistry, and a slip up or two by the Dallas Cowboys.

The offense is still a bit shaky as main threat receivers are in street clothes and secondary weapons can’t locate the ball. The ground game is struggling and Carson Wentz is not playing like the former MVP candidate he was just two seasons ago. The defense has been their saving grace over the past three games and they will need to step it up another level if they are to make this run.

Here are 3 reasons why the Philadelphia Eagles will still make the playoffs.

Schedules

The Eagles, despite their .500 record still have a chance at the playoffs. The Wild Card spot is pretty much out of the question so that leaves only winning the NFC East. With the Dallas Cowboys sitting only a game ahead, now is the time for the Eagles to strike.

In their next six games, they will face only two teams (Seahawks, Cowboys) with a winning record. Even if they manage to split those games, there’s still a good chance they can take the division. With games still slated against the Washington Redskins, Miami Dolphins and two against the New York Giants, their playoff destiny is in their hands.

On the other end of the coin, the Cowboys’ schedule is pretty brutal. This week they travel to take on the New England Patriots while being in the crosshairs of the Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears, and the Los Angeles Rams before taking on the Eagles in a game that could decide the division.

Experience

I’ve said this before and will continue to drive this point home. The Philadelphia Eagles have too much pride in them to just lay down. Yes, things have been a bit up and down this season and for good reasons. The offense is not clicking due to injuries and inconsistency from the wideout position. But still, with Carson Wentz behind center, there is always a fighting chance.

Last year, the Eagles flamed out in the second round against the New Orleans Saints a year after winning their first-ever Super Bowl. It was a letdown and no one on this team wants to go through that again. On the flip side of that, how will the Eagles feel knowing they have a better team but let the Cowboys walk away with the division for the second year in a row and essentially knock them out the playoffs?

Defense

Early on, the Eagles were in dire need of something to happen on the defensive side of the ball. Even during their glorious Super Bowl run, the defense was average at best. Heading into their game against the Seattle Seahawks, the Eagles are ranked 9th in total yards allowed and that has come on the strength of some solid defensive play lately.

Take into account that in their last six games, the once dismal Eagles’ secondary has allowed only seven passing touchdowns. What’s encouraging regarding that is that the Eagles are heading into the weakest part of their schedule. If they can continue to attack (18 sacks) the QB as they did in that same span of games, they will give Dallas a run for their money.

A glance at their schedule will show that their last remaining teams are not against top-tier QBs. The Eagles will face an erratic Ryan Fitzpatrick, and two rookies in Daniel Jones and Dwayne Haskins. While they still must face Russell Wilson and Dak Prescott, the Eagles’ defense has been steady against top QBs lately.