By Peter Gleason
Little by little, the national media have started to recognize how good the Eagles have been all year.
And Especially now.
Jason LaCanfora, a seer with almost no peer for CBS Sports and the NFL Network, posted this rationale for an Eagles win on the Washington Post:
One reason the Bengals have been such a challenge for the Chiefs: They play almost exclusively in one personnel package, with three wide receivers, one tight end and one running back on the field.
The Eagles rank seventh in usage of 11 personnel (regular season and playoffs) at 70.2 percent, but unlike the pass-reliant Bengals, Philadelphia has one of the most balanced offensive attacks in the NFL out of this grouping.
Hurts ranked fourth in the NFL in passer rating out of 11 personnel (99.2), with 18 touchdowns to six interceptions, and was second in yards per attempt. The Eagles are almost always in the shotgun in this formation — overall they are in the gun 89 percent of the time — while the Chiefs rank 29th in opponent passer rating out of the gun vs. sixth when the passer is under center.
The Chiefs have allowed 56 passing touchdowns while defending 11 personnel the past two years (playoffs included) — 12 more than any other team. (The average is 36.) They rank 25th in opponent passer rating against the package (93.8) and 24th in opponent completion percentage (65.6 percent).
The Eagles have the NFL’s second-most rushes out of 11 personnel in the past two years, including the playoffs (the Bengals are third), but the Eagles rank fourth in yards per carry (5.44) while the Bengals are 27th.
Philadelphia has 36 rushing touchdowns out of this formation in that span, 12 more than the Bengals, who are second. (The NFL average is 13.) The Chiefs’ defense ranks just 17th in yards per carry allowed against 11 personnel in that span (4.86), and, again, it hasn’t seen anything like the Eagles’ multifaceted running game.