Published: Sun, December 17, 2017
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

6 boxes for Philadelphia Eagles to check to beat New York Giants

6 boxes for Philadelphia Eagles to check to beat New York Giants

A game that until recently looked like a speedbump on the Eagles' path to the playoffs has all of a sudden become a matchup of intrigue and mystery. At 2-11 and with points coming at a premium, the Giants have nothing to lose and should be more aggressive to put points up on the board.

Nick Foles is as familiar as any with the Eagles offense given his additional time under Andy Reid in Kansas City.

The Giants will host the first-place Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, but the NFC East leaders will be without their starting quarterback, Carson Wentz, who is out with a torn ACL. Nonetheless, the sixth-year veteran is viewed as something of an unknown entity.

In his career without Fisher Foles has been well above average.

Can he lead the Eagles to a Super Bowl?

The Eagles are 7.5-point favorites which is an terrible lot with a backup QB, even for a good team going against a bad one. Philly will clinch first-round bye with win, but like Biggies to hang close.

Sunday could also mark the first time Landon Collins fails to suit up for a game since joining the Giants in 2015. Of the three remaining opponents, only the Cowboys are now above.500 at 7-6.

As for what the Eagles will be with Nick Foles, who really knows? The Giants offense was anemic again in the 30-10 loss, spoiling Steve Spagnuolo's debut as interim coach following the dismissal of Ben McAdoo.

Eli Manning is likely to return to the Giants next season
Eli Manning is likely to return to the Giants next season

The group that's flying under the radar in the aftermath of the injury to Wentz is the defense.

Wentz finished well ahead of Saints quarterback Drew Brees who managed 743,355 votes.

Follow along as we bring you live updates and analysis from the game from kickoff through the final whistle.

That was against the No. 2 scoring offense in the National Football League, and though the Eagles did surrender 35 points, the defense stepped up when it mattered.

Yes, a one-time Pro Bowler and high-quality backup will step in for Wentz, whose MVP-caliber season helped fuel the Eagles' 11-2 start to the season. This isn't all on Foles and the offense. The question is to the Giants have any will to spoil the party for the divisional rivals or will they roll over? But the Eagles aren't built around just one player.

Foles did find Nelson Agholor for a huge third-down conversion against the Rams, but Wentz has been uncanny in those situations. But it's his ability to scramble that has kept drives alive that were destined to end in a punt.

No matter what happens, the offense won't be the same without Wentz. Foles will do fine, but he's not quite an unstoppable force, unlike Wentz.

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