Stress can make one sick. Stress can cause one to lose sleep. Stress, and an inability to handle it properly, can cause athletes to underperform–choke, if you will. Luckily for Philly sports fans the Eagles should be heading into Super Bowl LII completely stress free. They’ve got everything to win and nothing to lose because they already lost more than any team in recent Super Bowl memory.
Injuries have plagued this Eagles team, which somehow remained the best team in the NFL in the face such adversity. Injuries happen on every team, but you would be hard-pressed to find a team that lost as many prominent players as the Eagles and did not experience a drop-off. They’re in the freaking Super Bowl!
Their reliable kicker Caleb Sturgis? Gone after week 1. They lost their Pro-Bowl running back Darren Sproles in week 3 with a broken arm that needed surgery AND a torn ACL. Special Teams Captain Chris Maragos’ season came to an end in week 6 with a knee injury. Jordan Hicks, their starting middle linebacker, they lost him for the season in week 7. The injury god’s were greedy on Week 7. Future Hall of Famer and 2016 Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters just happened to blow out his knee that same week. The apparent death-blow came on Week 14 when they lost their starting QB and NFL MVP favorite Carson Wentz to a season-ending knee injury.
The season seamed over. Most thought the Eagles would be one and done in the Playoffs, but a strange thing happened. They just kept winning. And, now, they find themselves in the Super Bowl against the evil empire, the New England Patriots.
The Eagles, led by a head coach that many underestimated, are attempting to win the franchise’s first Super Bowl with a bunch of back-ups at key positions including Nick Foles at quarterback. No one expected them to be here. No one expects them to win.
The Patriots are looking to tie the Pittsburgh Steelers with a league-leading six Super Bowl wins. They are the reigning NFL dynasty. They have the greatest coach in NFL history and the greatest quarterback. Brady and Belichick are looking to prove to the world that they are a united force and that trading Jimmy Garoppolo was the right move. They opened as six point favorites in Super Bowl LII. That number is dropping. All that stands in their way is a Nick Foles and Doug Pederson-led Eagles team. A Patriots loss here could be colossal. A loss here could signal the end of Brady-Belichick era as the Eagles will only be better, healthier, and stronger next year when Wentz and the troops return.
The Patriots have everything to lose. The pressure is all on them. On the other hand, an Eagles’ loss at this point cannot tarnish a season in which they’ve already overachieved. The Eagles are loose, united, underdogs, and riding on house money. They’ve got nothing to lose and that’s exactly why they’re going to win Super LII.