Super Bowl LII

(1) Philadelphia Eagles at (1) New England Patriots

Eagles: The other day, I was looking back at all my divisional previews and my predictions for the 2017 season and I had the Philadelphia Eagles finishing in third place in the NFC East and look how that panned out. I say this almost every season and I will say it again, the NFC East is such a tough division to predict because anyone can come out of left field and surprise you and it took me a while to really take this football team seriously. When their winning streak reached six games, I was sold and the way they were winning games was what grabbed my attention. The offense was prolific, sharp, Wentz was precise and poised as a second-year quarterback and the defense was also a contributing factor in them winning all the games that they did. Do you want to know just how good this Eagles defense was? In the months of October and November, they didn’t allow a single offensive touchdown and when they did, it was on December 3rd on a Sunday night in Seattle when the Seahawks scored a first-quarter touchdown on the Eagles. The turning point of their season came during a game in Los Angeles when Carson Wentz injured his knee and it was revealed the next day that he tore his ACL and he was done for the season and many wrote this team off and said the NFC was extremely wide open now, but I wasn’t one of them because they had a solid backup quarterback who knows the Eagles offensive scheme and knows Doug Pederson’s system. I’ll admit I wasn’t sold on Nick Foles and how he looked in the game against the Falcons, but what I saw him do against the Vikings and how he tore apart a really good Minnesota defense. It has been quite the year for the Philadelphia Eagles and this city has been waiting for a championship from their football team for many years and here they are, one win away from winning their first Super Bowl title in franchise history and to accomplish this, they will need to face a team that knows how to win on the biggest stage of them all on Sunday night in Minneapolis.

Patriots: When you look back at the season they had, you can’t help but discuss the first game of the season when they opened things up against the Kansas City Chiefs and how they were embarrassed and lost by 15 points on the same night when they hung up another championship banner for the second time in three seasons. As usual, some experts thought that this was the end of the Patriots run (does facepalm). What I respect about this team is when they have problems, they will find a way to fix it and that’s exactly what they did with their defense which was really struggling right out the gates but I think the issue early on was how they were still trying to figure out how to play with one another. After their loss to the Carolina Panthers in week four, things began to look up for them and they played better as a football team winning 8 games in a row and clinching yet another winning season, AFC East division title, a first-round bye and the top seed in the AFC playoffs once again under Bill Belichick. Let’s also remember that they won 13 games without Julian Edelman who tore his ACL during the preseason and I’ve often stated that Julian is just as important to the Patriots offense as Gronkowski is. We all know their offense is going to put up the points. What really caught my eye was their defense and how poorly they played in the month of September as they were giving up over 30 points a game. They ended the regular season giving up only 18.5 points per game. This football team is the gold standard of consistency right now. Tom continues to play at a high level and look how he had to lead the Patriots back from 10 points down in the fourth quarter against Jacksonville without Gronk on the field for the rest of the game. That’s what makes Tom stand apart from other quarterbacks. He can go without a key receiver or two and work with what he has around him. That’s how great he is and how great the Patriots are. There’s history on the line in this game. Brady can become the first NFL player ever to win six Super Bowls and the Patriots are looking to become the first team to repeat since guess who, the New England Patriots.

This is normally where I put my players to watch for each team along with a few keys to the game. To find out my x-factors and keys for each team, check me out on Sunday on social media giving my predictions, keys to the game, x-factors and who I think will win the game on video. See you on Sunday 15 minutes before kickoff!!