The Philadelphia Eagles were on one against the New York Giants in their NFC Divisional Playoff matchup Saturday evening.
Philadelphia took a 14-0 lead with just under six minutes remaining in the first quarter on two Jalen Hurts touchdown passes. It was up 28-0 at the half, pretty much ending this one before the second half started. Those first 30 minutes saw Philly tally north of 250 total yards.
As for the New York Giants, they just weren’t on the same playing field as Philadelphia. Daniel Jones struggled big time under center. First-year head coach Brian Daboll also struggled with in-game coaching. The end result was a 38-7 Eagles win.
Below, we give you four takeaways from this game.
Injury had no impact on Philadelphia Eagles star Jalen Hurts
Hurts missed two of the Eagles’ final three games with a shoulder injury to his throwing arm. The NFL MVP candidate noted after returning to action Week 18 against these very same Giants that he’s still in a ton of pain. For the No. 1 seed, the prospect of their star quarterback not being 100% wasn’t seen as a great thing heading in.
It sure looks like Philadelphia earning the first-round bye had a positive impact on Hurts. From pretty much the get Saturday night, Hurt didn’t seem to be hurting (pun intended) at all. He completed 7-of-9 to open the same with two first-quarter touchdowns.
This start to the game has to be music to the ears of Philadelphia fans heading into the NFC Championship Game against either the Dallas Cowboys or San Francisco 49ers. When all was said and done, Hurts completed 16-of-24 passing for 154 yards with two touchdowns. He also added 34 rushing yards and a score on the ground. Yeah, he’s going to be a problem come Championship Sunday.
New York Giants are ways away from contention
One of the biggest takeaways from Saturday’s NFL Divisional Playoff action was just how far out of their element the Giants were. From the opening kickoff to the final whistle in the fourth quarter, this team didn’t even belong on the same field as Philadelphia.
First-year head coach Brian Daboll opted to go for it on fourth-and-8 from Philadelphia’s 40 down 7-0 early in the first quarter. The play failed miserably, setting up an Eagles touchdown and a 14-0 New York deficit.
That would be a sign of things to come for the Giants. They were absolutely no match for Philadelphia. It was that simple. General manager Joe Schoen and Co. now head into an uncertain offseason with a ton of key free agents, including Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley.
Saquon Barkley goes missing for the New York Giants
If this was indeed Barkley’s final game in a Giants uniform, his career in Jersey ended with a big thud. The Pro Bowl running back put up nine yards on five touches in the first half, failing to create the balance Daniel Jones needed on offense.
Outside of a 39-yard run with this game out of hand in the third quarter, Barkley did very little. He averaged 2.8 yards on his other eight rush attempts while adding a mere two receptions. This was not the game for Barkley to go missing.
Cowboys or 49ers will be up against it next Sunday
All eyes in the NFC will be on the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers Sunday evening in Santa Clara. San Francisco has won 11 consecutive games and is averaging nearly 35 points per game during that span. Dallas is coming off a blowout win over Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the wild card round.
Whoever wins this game is going to be up against it in Philadelphia during Championship Sunday. There’s a reason why these Eagles finished the regular season tied for the best record in the NFL. They are an absolute juggernaut on both sides of the ball. While next week will prove to be a much tougher test, Philadelphia should be up to the task.