5 + 4 = 2.
Somehow, improbably, the Philadelphia Eagles have 2 wins despite turning the ball over 9 times in eight quarters.
It’s one thing to overcome sloppy play to beat Cleveland (as Philadelphia did in Week 1), but it’s somewhat shocking to be able to overcame those same mistakes against a team that bills itself as a Super Bowl contender.
But that’s just what the Eagles did to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, in a 24-23 victory at Lincoln Field that had the feel of a playoff game.
The good news for the Eagles is that the offense is moving up and down the field at will.
Through two games, the Michel Vick-led offense has generated 942 yards, tops in the league (pending the MNF game tonight).
At some point, though, too many turnovers is going to end up costing the Eagles. For now, though, thanks to a pair of 1-point victories, Philadelphia is 2-0 for the first time since 2004 – which happens to be the last time the Eagles appeared in a Super Bowl.
And thanks to a couple surprising results on Sunday, one-eighth of the way through the season the Eagles sit alone in first place in the NFC East.
The Same Regular-Season Defense?
The New York Giants’ defense has picked up right where it left off last season – in the regular season, that is. The Giants went into the 2011 playoffs with the 27th-ranked defense (in terms of yards allowed). They were able to turn things around, though, en route to winning four playoffs games.
After allowing 24 points to Dallas in a Week 1 loss, the Giants (1-1) gave up 34 more in a 41-34 win over Tampa Bay on Sunday.
After two weeks, the Giants are 25th in points allowed, 22nd in passing yards allowed and 18th in yards allowed overall. Remember, the Giants were just 7-7 last season before winning their final six. If they allow an average of 29 points a game like they have so far, they’ll be fortunate to be 7-7 after 14 games this season.
Eli Manning rescued the Giants in a big way on Sunday, becoming the 13th player in league history to pass for 500 yards in a game. Manning overcame 3 INTs in the first half to finish with 510 yards and 3 TDs.
RG3 Keeps Rolling
Even though Washington lost, 31-28, to St. Louis on Sunday, it certainly wasn’t because of lack of offense. Rookie QB Robert Griffin continued to make things happen for Mike Shanahan’s Redskins (1-1). In fact, through two games, his numbers compare favorably to last season’s rookie QB sensation, Cam Newton.
Newton through first 2 pro games (2011):
- 52-for-83 (62.7%), 854 passing yards
- 3 TDs, 4 INTs
- 18 rushes, 71 yards, 2 TDs
Griffin through first 2 pro games (2012):
- 39-for-55 (70.9%), 526 passing yards
- 3 TDs, 1 INT
- 20 rushes, 124 yards, 2 TDs
RG3 and the ‘Skins host Cincinnati next week (a team that gave up 27 points to Cleveland on Sunday), before traveling to Tampa Bay in Week 4.
Roller Coaster Cowboys
So which Dallas team should we believe in? Are they as good as they appeared to be in a Week 1 victory over the New York Giants? Or are they as bad as they appeared to be in a surprising 27-7 loss to Seattle on Sunday?
Until the Cowboys are able to show some consistency, and reel off two or three wins in a row, it will be hard to believe in this team.
Tony Romo was OK in the blowout loss in Seattle, throwing for 251 yards and 1 TD. Rookie QB Russell Wilson didn’t throw for as many yards (151), but he was an efficient 15-for-20 passing the ball. It was Seattle running game that caused so many problems for Dallas; behind Marshawn Lynch, the Seahawks out-gained the Cowboys 182-49 on the ground.
Add in a blocked punt that went for a TD, and a turnover on a kickoff, and absolutely nothing worked for Dallas (1-1), which hosts Tampa Bay next week.
Putting up the Points… and Giving them Away
The four NFC East teams have combined to score more points than any other division in the NFC (pending the Denver-Atlanta MNF game).
Washington leads the league with 68 points (1 better than Baltimore). New York is 6th with 58 points, Philadelphia has scored 41 and Dallas 31, for a division total of 198 points.
On the other hand, the four teams in the East have allowed even more points than they’ve scored, for a net division negative of -6.