Giants HC Brian Daboll indicates he will not rest his starters in Week 18 matchup vs. Eagles
For any Eagles fan hoping for a layup in the season finale against the Giants, don’t get your hopes up too high.
After the Giants Week 17 victory over Indianapolis, they clinched their first playoff berth since 2016. At 9-6-1, New York is locked in at the sixth seed in the NFC playoff picture. They’ll have nothing to play for in Week 18.
Oddly enough, the 13-3 Eagles have everything to play for in Week 18. After dropping two games in a row, Philadelphia will need to defeat the Giants to secure the No. 1 seed and NFC East title.
Since the Giants don’t have anything to play for except their pride, it was assumed that New York would rest their starters next week in preparation for their Wildcard matchup. Head coach Brian Daboll was asked about this possibility during his post game press conference on Sunday and he seemed to indicate that he plans on playing his starters against Philly.
Giants HC Brian Daboll on potentially resting starters
“You get rest after the season,” Daboll told reporters. “It’s a long season. This is the fun part of the season. It’s the fun part of the season when you’re winning, it’s the bad part of the season when you’re losing.”
The Giants have gone 3-1 over their past four games and have gained some solid momentum heading into the postseason. For a team that simply doesn’t have the same level of talent as most of the NFC playoff teams, keeping that momentum trending in the right direction is imperative.
Philadelphia was in a similar position last season entering the final week of the regular season. With a playoff spot clinched, Nick Sirianni opted to rest his starters for the majority of his team’s Week 18 contest against Dallas. And as you’ll recall, the Eagles got absolutely steam rolled by Tampa Bay in the opening round.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if the Giants use a time machine to get a prime Lawrence Taylor for this matchup, the Eagles need to win. They’ve controlled their own destiny for the entire season and have had the opportunity to lockdown the first-round bye since Christmas Eve. The Eagles have put themselves in this position by losing winnable games, and it’ll be up to them to dig themselves out of it.
This is a must-win for the Eagles, regardless of who suits up for the Giants.