The Philadelphia Eagles are heading into the second week of 2016 NFL preseason action with a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers this evening. Doug Pederson is hoping to see his team take a step forward from the performance that they put on last week.
Last week’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers resulted in a 17-9 victory for the Eagles, but it wasn’t pretty. Pederson will want to see his starters play a bit better than they did and will be looking for players who are in the second and third units that are earning playing time for the upcoming season.
Obviously, this is just the second week of the preseason so everything should be taken with a grain of salt. No starting jobs are won in the second week, although players can earn the coaching staff’s trust by playing well in these games. It is still a good time for fans to keep an eye on certain things.
All of that being said, what five things should the Eagles and their fans be on the lookout for this evening in particular?
How Does Sam Bradford Look?
Carson Wentz went down with an injury last week and will not play in the second preseason game. That will give Sam Bradford a chance to increase his chances of starting even more. Bradford only completed one pass out of one attempt last week for three yards and needs to figure out a way to put up a bigger game this week.
Who Takes the Lead in the Running Back Competition?
Philadelphia needs their running back competition to heat up this week. Ryan Mathews is widely favored to start Week 1, although Kenjon Barner and Cedric O’Neal are still competing with him for carries. Pederson needs to see a running back step up and take the lead in the competition this week.
Can the Defensive Secondary Force Turnovers at the Same Rate?
Last week, the Eagles’ secondary forced three turnovers via interceptions. It is just preseason, but if the Eagles want to compete for a playoff spot in the NFC this season they will need to force turnovers in the secondary. That will make it interesting to see if the defense can continue forcing turnovers at a high rate.
What do you think the Eagles’ record will be this season? Do you consider them a contender in the NFC East division? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!