Three reasons Eagles will win Super Bowl LII
The massive chip on their collective shoulder is one of three key reasons the Philadelphia Eagles will win the franchise's first Super Bowl.
The Philadelphia Eagles are underdogs in Super Bowl LII.
That is nothing new to the NFC's top seeds, who reached the Super Bowl despite being home underdogs in their two playoff wins.
The massive chip on their collective shoulder is one of three key reasons why the Eagles will beat the New England Patriots and claim the franchise's first Super Bowl victory.
The Eagles have shown remarkable resilience all season. They first had to replace Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters, but Halapoulivaati Vaitai has done a superb job in his place and shut down Minnesota Vikings pass rusher Everson Griffen in the NFC Championship Game.
Philadelphia were dealt another massive blow in Week 14, when starting quarterback Carson Wentz went down with a torn ACL. Nick Foles stepped in, and, though he was not great over the final three weeks, he has been spectacular in the postseason.
Foles has completed more than 75 per cent of his passes in the last two games and threw for 352 yards and three touchdowns in the 38-7 rout of the Vikings.
Philadelphia's resilience could result in their first NFL title since 1960.
Defense wins championships and the Eagles have a great one. That unit is the second reason the Eagles will beat the Patriots.
The Eagles know pressuring Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will be key to winning. Brady is human, and the Eagles led the NFL with 16.9 pressures per game this season. Philadelphia had the NFL's fourth-ranked defense that was the best in the league against the run.
Against a Patriots offense that relies on Brady's arm, the Eagles should be able to get the Patriots in third-and-long situations. That will allow pass rushers Fletcher Cox, Chris Long and Brandon Graham to come after Brady.
3. Their running back trio
Philadelphia running backs LeGarrette Blount, midseason acquisition Jay Ajayi and rookie Corey Clement are averaging better than five yards per touch.
Blount led the Eagles with 766 rushing yards and scored twice during the regular season. Ajayi had 408 rushing yards and a score in seven games since coming over from the Miami Dolphins. Clement had 321 rushing yards during the regular season with a team-high four rushing touchdowns.
The trio have maintained that form in the playoffs with a combined 192 rushing yards and two touchdowns to go with 12 receptions for 109 yards.
Clement showcased his impact as a pass-catcher in the regular season with 10 receptions for 123 yards and two touchdowns and the Eagles will likely try to get him in space having seen the impact Corey Grant had for the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Championship Game.
The running backs can help Foles get comfortable, and as long as the Eagles don't turn the ball over, they can pull off the upset.