Quarterback Baker Mayfield and the 2-0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers look to continue their impressive start to the season as they host the Philadelphia Eagles.
Eagles’ quarterback Jalen Hurts looks to improve to 3-0 record as he tries to get Philadelphia to their second straight Super Bowl appearance.
Philadelphia was expected to start the season strong, however, the Buccaneers have taken the league by surprise after handling the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears.
An interesting matchup as part one of a Monday Night Football doubleheader, but someone’s “0” has got to go.
Mayfield Provides Spark
Baker Mayfield has complete control of the offense after an offseason of uncertainty and competition. Now at 2-0, he seems to be the leader the team expected him to be when they brought him in as a free agent.
Although it is early in the season, the connection between Mayfield and wide receiver Mike Evans seems to have grown. In last week’s matchup against the Chicago Bears, Evans hauled in 6 catches for 171 yards and a touchdown. With the star receiver possibly entering free agency this offseason, he is looking to prove that he can still play at a high level.
Additionally, while this offense is starting to figure things out, the defense has been playing at an efficient level. The unit has produced five turnovers over the first two games and look to add onto that tonight.
The Eagles Still Soaring
The Super Bowl runner-ups are coming into tonight still undefeated on the season. However, it has not looked pretty all the time.
The Eagles have struggled at times on offense and surprisingly struggled last week against the Vikings. They gave up 28 points even after being up 27-7. They have yet to play a complete game to the standard fans are used to seeing.
Jalen Hurts was asked about these apparent struggles and proceeded to answer with a question of his own. “When did winning not become the main thing?” Hurts said. While the media has the team under a microscope, it looks like the team just cares about getting a win.
Even though the passing game has not been the highlight of the offense, this team runs the ball and runs it well. With an injury to runningback Kenneth Gainwell, former Detroit Lions RB D’andre Swift took the additional carries to his full advantage.
Swift had 28 carries last week for a career-high 175 yards and added onto his night one touchdown. Look for the Eagles to continue to impose their will on the ground.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) September 24, 2023
Keys to the Game
For the Eagles, their keys to the game will be to create turnovers and take care of the ball. These will work hand-in-hand but Tampa has yet to turn the ball over this season. If the Eagles’ defense can make Mayfield uncomfortable the whole night, they can capitalize on mistakes he might make.
The Buccaneer’s keys to the game will be to continue to protect Mayfield and get the running game going early. If Tampa can find success on the ground, this will allow for play actions and rollouts to keep Philadelphia’s defense off balance. The ground-and-pound game will also continue to protect Mayfield who has been sacked only once this year.
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