Are the Eagles for real? Fresh off an emphatic win over the Carolina Panthers on Thursday Night Football, Philadelphia returns home to host the Washington Redskins. Midseason NFC East supremacy is on the line when the two teams meet at 8:30 p.m. ET.
Here’s what we’re watching for in the divisional battle:
1. Who is the better surgeon under center? Carson Wentz has had quite the start to the 2017 season, leading the Eagles to a 5-1 record in their first six games with plenty of touchdown passes (13) and very little mistakes (three interceptions). Will the second-year passer continue his hot start against a Redskins secondary that could be missing some of its best members, or will the pressure of the bright lights and big stage be too much?
We know what to expect from Kirk Cousins — or at least we think we do. Last season, Cousins tended to shine in big games, picking apart defenses through the air. This year, things have been a little different for the Redskins‘ offense. Instead of relying on 2016 breakout target Jamison Crowder, Cousins has spread the ball around the group, relying heavily on running back Chris Thompson out of the backfield. Thompson is tied for the team lead in receptions with tight end Jordan Reed (18), though the running back has more than doubled Reed’s yardage, taking his grabs 340 yards and scoring twice in the process. With Rob Kelley expected to start at running back, will Cousins instead turn to his traditional receivers more often?
2. Is this the game in which Terrelle Pryor finally lives up to the offseason hype? Eagles cornerback Ronald Darby (ankle) is questionable, increasing the load on the rest of the Philadelphia secondary. The Eagles might also be without linebackers Jordan Hicks (calf) and Mychal Kendricks (hamstring), meaning a defensive back might be needed to account for Thompson out of the backfield, leaving Philadelphia’s defense that much thinner. With the listed defenders potentially…