It’s understandable to say that the Philadelphia Eagles got the short end of the proverbial stick when the NFL decided to postpone their game, originally scheduled for Sunday afternoon, to Tuesday after the Washington Football Team experienced a COVID-19 outbreak.
After all, heading into the 2021 season, the league said that they would not be moving games for the reason of injury or illness (the league backtracked on this and said in a memo that it was the Omicron variant that changed their stance).
So the Eagles are left to play on Tuesday night and then suit up just five days later against a New York Giants team that upset them 13-7 just three weeks ago. Then they head to Maryland to meet Washington once again.
It’s a vital stretch for the 6-7 Eagles, who have the same record as the Washington team that held the seventh and final NFC playoff spot entering Week 15. Now they’ll have to play those three games in a 13-day stretch, which naturally has plenty of football personalities around Philadelphia steeped in their feelings and calling this entire sequence of events an outrage.
Sure, it’s less than ideal, but the Eagles still very much are in control of their own destiny with a favorable schedule ahead — even if it is a bit more condensed.
Those two Eagles games in five days are both at home while Washington, after playing in Philadelphia, will have to travel down to Dallas to face the NFC East-leading Cowboys with what will likely still be a shorthanded roster.
The Eagles also get a couple extra days to ensure that starting quarterback Jalen Hurts is 100% ready to go after missing Week 13 with an ankle injury. He was listed as questionable on Friday for Sunday’s game and now gets a bit more time to rest and test that ankle.
Philadelphia’s backfield also gets an opportunity for a bit more rest, as well. Both Miles Sanders (ankle) and Jordan Howard (knee) have been dealing with some injury issues.
Meanwhile, Washington might very well be rolling out their third-string quarterback regardless of the postponement. Taylor Heinicke did not go on the COVID list until Friday where his backup, Kyle Allen also is.
Neither is believed to be available for Tuesday, meaning the Eagles will be facing a Washington offense led by either Kyle Shurmur, who has yet to appear in an NFL game, or Garrett Gilbert, who was just signed off the New England Patriots’ practice squad on Friday.
Put the Eagles down as heavy favorites to leap over Washington in the standings and then they don’t have to go anywhere to prepare for a Giants team that has one of the worst offenses in the entire NFL.
Really, this whole situation could be much, much worse for the Eagles.