FBG says: Good matchup. Tom Brady and the Patriots had an uncharacteristic game last week as they lost by 17 points to the Ravens in a game in which they failed to get any consistency going until after they fell behind 17-0 in the first quarter. The Ravens took away any big plays, forcing the Patriots to throw the ball underneath to Julian Edelman and Mohamed Sanu who each averaged less than 9 yards per completion and did not have just two catches longer than 15 yards. The Ravens all but took James White away holding the running back to just three targets which was unusual for the pass-catching specialist. The Patriots seem to have one or two of these games each year where they are just not their dominant self, so the overall takeaway is that Mohamed Sanu fit into the offense with 14 targets, which is a great thing moving forward for this team that desperately needed a second receiving option outside of Julian Edelman after cutting both Antonio Brown and Josh Gordon this season. The Patriots also got good news in the N'Keal Harry the first-round pick of the Patriots should be returning this week which will give them another speed threat on the outside to complement this offense.
The Eagles secondary on the surface seems to be an improving unit as they have held their last three opponents to just 177 yards passing. However, the level of competition that they have faced has been sub-par in Mitchell Trubisky, Josh Allen, and Dak Prescott in a game in which Dallas was able to run the ball successfully for most of the game. Even still, this is a unit that to shut down any NFL quarterback after the last two seasons that they have had has been an accomplishment. Jalen Mills has been playing significantly better as he shut down Allen Robinson last week holding him to just one catch for six yards. The issues are with the other corners in Ronald Darby and Avonte Maddox out of the slot both of which have struggled. This is a unit that is improving, and Mohamed Sanu will likely see a lot of Mills this week as the Eagles will likely put the faster Darby on Dorsett and Maddox covering Edelman out of the slot. This is still a unit that has allowed four 300 yard passing games on the season, so expect the Patriots to get back on track this week.