The Eagles will look to get above the .500 mark this week, traveling down to Jacksonville to face a very mediocre Jaguars team. There has been plenty of drama in Philadelphia this week, and it seems as though we’ll have to focus on this Eagles team in a short-term sense for a while.
Today we look at some of the Jaguars team stats after the first two weeks as well as looking at their impact players on both sides of the ball.
Points per game: 18.5 (17th)
Yards per game: 324.5 (14th)
Pass yards per game: 222 (15th)
Rush yards per game: 102.5 (17th)
Points per game: 27.5 (29th)
Yards per game: 420 (29th)
Pass yards per game: 300 (29th)
Rush yards per game: 120 (20th)
David Garrard – Garrard hasn’t exactly been the picture of consistency for the Jaguars this year. After having a nice game Week One, where he finished with a quarterback rating of 138.9, Garrard came out last week and threw four interceptions. In doing so, he was removed from the game. He’ll have the chance to bounce back against the Eagles, but will probably have a close eye on him. The Eagles defense has shown signs of brilliance as well as times that they’ve looked dreadful. Sunday’s story will have a lot to do with which Garrard shows up and which Eagles defense shows up.
Maurice Jones-Drew – Jones-Drew has shown some Gerrard like inconsistencies as well. However, you know that he’s the type of guy that can break things open in an instance. With the way the Eagles made Jahvid Best last week, Jones-Drew has going to be licking his chops. However, it looks like Stewart Bradley will return this week for the Eagles which should be a big help.
Mike Sims-Walker – The Eagles faced a big-bodied receiver last week in Calvin Johnson and will face another one this week in Sims-Walker. Last week against the Chargers, Sims-Walker was one of the few bright spots for the Jaguars. He recorded 10 receptions for over 100 yards and scored a touchdown. The Eagles have done a fairly good job of shutting down receivers so far this year, but they will have to make sure Sims-Walker doesn’t have a game like he did last week.
Marcedes Lewis – Lewis is quietly having a decent start to his season, and after the way the Eagles let Jermain Gresham play last week, there’s reason to be concerned. We’ve continually seen the Eagles struggle against tight ends and it seemed like this year might be a step in the right direction. Bradley’s return should also help here.
Aaron Kampman – Last week, we saw first year Lion Kyle Vanden Bosch do whatever he pleased. This week, the Eagles will see another veteran defensive end who is playing in his first year with a new team. With our line playing the way it is, Kampman will look to add to his sack total which currently stands at one and a half. Eagles’ tackles will have his hands full with Kampman, so I hope to see the Eagles running backs do a better job in protection then they did last week.
Tyson Alualu – The Eagles will see the second top-ten rookie defensive tackle in as many weeks this Sunday. Ndamukong Suh was able to wreak some havoc last week, and Alualu will look to do the same this week. The interior of the Eagles line will probably show him a lot of double teams on Sunday, and hopefully this will keep him from having a big game.
Secondary – This is definitely a weakness for the Jaguars and something the Eagles will need to exploit this week. Michael Vick has looked alright throwing the ball, but he will need to show more with his arm now that he’s been named the starting quarterback for the season. With a team that is giving up 300 yards per game through the air, I’d like to see Vick be able to spend some time in the pocket distributing balls to his play makers.
Tiquan Underwood is a young player for the Jaguars that has made some pretty nice plays in the return game. He’ll be opposed by the electrifying DeSean Jackson. If either of them can get some things working in the return game, it could have a big impact on the game.