Playoff Picture: Update on QB Jalen Hurts, a look at the NFC race following Eagles’ loss vs. Saints
Two weeks ago, the Eagles were all but locked into the No. 1 seed, comfortably sitting at 13-1 following a victory over Chicago.
A shoulder injury to QB Jalen Hurts changed everything, causing the MVP candidate to sit out the last two games. With Gardner Minshew at the helm, Philly has dropped two straight and are now in a do-or-die situation next week for the NFC’s top seed.
Thankfully, the Giants cruised to a 38-10 win over Detroit yesterday, earning themselves a trip to the postseason. Regardless of what happens when they travel to Lincoln Financial Field in Week 18, NYG is cemented into the No. 6 seed, meaning they can rest their starters — if they so choose.
Week 18 clinching scenarios for Philadelphia
Clinch NFC East title with:
- PHI win vs. NYG or
- DAL loss vs. WSH
Clinch NFC No. 1 seed and first-round bye with:
- PHI win or
- DAL loss vs.WSH + SF loss vs. ARZ
As bad as things look now, the path to home-field advantage is straightforward: win (or tie) at home against the Giants. The Eagles can still clinch the top seed if they lose, but they’ll need losses from the 49ers and Cowboys.
If Philly loses, but San Francisco wins and Dallas loses, they’ll fall to the No. 2 seed. In a nightmare scenario, if Dallas wins and the Eagles lose, they’d drop to the No. 5 seed and surrender the division title.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Jalen Hurts is expected to return from his sprained shoulder next week vs. NYG. Hurts was reportedly close to playing yesterday, but the medical staff was wary of re-aggravation. After mustering up just 10 points on offense vs. New Orleans, Philly will be ecstatic to have their star back under center.
From NFL Now: On the expected availability of #Eagles QB Jalen Hurts and on the torn ACL suffered by #Seahawks star Jordyn Brooks… pic.twitter.com/fOeuYuNYD5— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 2, 2023
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Eagles