Defensive Front Seven vs. Michal Turner
The way that Michael Turner plays on Sunday will have a huge impact on the outcome of this game. If Turner is able to run the ball successfully all day, it’s going to be devastating. If the Eagles can shut him down, they will have a much better chance of winning the game.
The Eagles were able to stop Frank Gore last weekend who is another exceptional back. This forced Alex Smith to have to try and beat them with his arm. Although Smith had a lot of success going to Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis, the Eagles did what they needed to do against Gore. They will want to force the Falcons into the same thing, so Turner needs to be stopped early.
Linebackers vs. Tony Gonzalez
As mentioned above, Vernon Davis was able to put up big numbers against the Eagles last week. He went for over 100 yards, and the image of him burning Stewart Bradley down the middle of the field still burns in my mind.
This week, the Eagles will see another great tight end in Tony Gonzalez. He has been one of the best in the business for quite some time and still continues to play at a high level. With the way the Eagles struggle to cover tight ends, you have to think that Matt Ryan will look to Gonzalez a lot on Sunday. The linebackers need to do a much better job against him then they did against Davis last weekend.
It’s bizarre that this has been a problem for so long, and it seems like they just can’t fix it. Gonzalez will more than likely catch some balls on Sunday. I just hope it’s not in a way that has a huge impact on the game.
Eagles Receivers vs. Falcons Secondary
The Falcons secondary has been mediocre this season, and the Eagles will definitely look to exploit them with their skillful receivers. Kevin Kolb did a good job last week of moving the ball through the air, and will look to get started again early this weekend.
There has been a lot of talk about the numbers of DeSean Jackson with Kolb at the helm. His numbers aren’t as high as when Michael Vick has played, but I think this could be the game that Jackson goes off. No matter who’s playing quarterback, Jackson is going to make plays. It’ just a matter of time.
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