Friday, March 31 2023

One of the biggest surprises of the season – two, really – resides in the NFC East, where the Eagles and Cowboys have been among the most impressive teams in the NFL through four weeks.

Philadelphia is the league’s last unbeaten team, improving to 4-0 after a 29-21 victory over the Jaguars in Week 4. Not only are the Eagles undefeated, but they’ve been dominant on both sides of the ball, ranking second overall in total offense and third in total defense.

Not far behind Philly is reigning NFC East champion Dallas. After falling to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and losing starting quarterback Dak Prescott to injury in Week 1, the Cowboys have won three in a row behind backup quarterback Cooper Rush. While Rush has certainly played well enough for the Cowboys to win all three of his starts, Dallas’ defense has been the catalyst. The unit has allowed just 14.3 points per game since Prescott went down. 

Despite the Cowboys’ impressive three-game stretch, a pair of “Speak” cohosts agreed that the Eagles were the more impressive team through the first month of the season. 

“When you watch the Eagles – we’re electrifying on offense, on defense,” former Eagles running back LeSean McCoy said. “You put this team together, we didn’t know what it would look like. I was part of a team that we put together that was called the ‘Dream Team.’ You had Nnamdi Asomugha, Asante Samuel, DRC (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie), myself, DeSean Jackson. For backups, we had Vince Young. 

“We had an All-Star team, right? We weren’t an undefeated team. C’mon, we were 4-12. But the (2022) Philadelphia Eagles, they’re not that. They’re a superstar team, and they’re getting it done, 4-0. That’s very impressive.”

Have the Eagles been the most impressive team to start the season?

The panelists on ‘Speak’ debate whether the undefeated Eagles or the 3-1 Cowboys have been the more impressive NFC East team through four games.

FOX Sports Dallas Cowboys writer David Helman didn’t deny that Dallas has looked impressive so far. However, he believes the key difference between the Eagles and Cowboys is how Dallas looked in Week 1, when it lost 19-3 to Tampa Bay with Prescott playing. 

“I can’t let this go until we’ve seen something else … the Cowboys trotted out in Week 1 the team they wanted to field,” Helman said. “Forget Cooper Rush for a minute, they had Dak for 55 minutes. That was the team they went into the season with, like, ‘We’ve got it!’ They got dog walked. They had the worst Week 1 of the entire NFL. They looked like chumps. 

“I can’t let that go completely from my mind, especially when you consider two of these three wins were against the Giants and Commanders. C’mon now.”

Helman also believes that because everyone’s grading the Cowboys on a curve due to Prescott’s absence, you might think they’re better than they really are. 

“I think your expectations change a little bit [with Prescott out],” Helman said. “Cooper Rush has been phenomenal. It’s one of the stories of the season so far. Your expectations change, though. If the Cowboys were 20th in offense, 22nd in passing offense, scoring 20-23 points per game, if they were doing that with Dak Prescott, you’d be saying, ‘Why did they give Dak all of this money.’ But since it’s Cooper Rush, you’re saying, ‘This is awesome. These guys are great.’

“It’s very impressive … It’s not as impressive to me as undefeated, top-three offense in the league, top-three efficiency in everything, first in the league in sacks. The Eagles are just doing everything great right now. You can’t argue with that.”

Both teams venture out west in Week 5 as the Eagles face the Cardinals, while the Cowboys face the defending Super Bowl champion Rams, with both games taking place at 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX.

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Source: FOX Sports


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