As the Philadelphia Eagles watch film this week, they can only suppress emotions so much.
Sure, nine months have elapsed since their 38-35 Super Bowl LVII loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. Time has calloused some scars. The determination to view film through the lens of this week’s game plan helps. And the Eagles’ 2023 success makes last season’s disappointment less bitter.
The Eagles enter their Monday night visit to the juggernaut Chiefs with an 8-1 record, their second consecutive season at that clip. The last three teams to win at least eight of their first nine games in back-to-back years won the Super Bowl the latter campaign.
That tantalizing hope — that this season, the Eagles can hoist the Lombardi Trophy rather than glance across the field at it — drives Philadelphia. It also shapes the lens through which the Eagles should view this game.
“I know there’s a lot of us that do have that sting still on us, but if we take care of business this year, all that will be over when we’re holding that trophy,” Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham told reporters Thursday. “Last year was last year. They can’t give that ring back, so we can’t even worry about that. It’s about the next one.
“So right now, this is a stepping stone to get where we want to go.”
If rematching the Chiefs is one of 17 regular-season stepping stones for the Eagles, then let’s recognize that not all stepping stones are created equally.
This weekend’s game poses the biggest test of the Eagles’ regular season, followed closely only by the Dec. 3 NFC championship rematch against the San Francisco 49ers.
The Chiefs would benefit from a win on Monday. But a victory would mean more for the Eagles’ psyche than that of the Chiefs. The Eagles know they’re a well-coached, well-run, talented organization capable of outplaying any opponent. But after the Super Bowl loss to the Chiefs, Philadelphia needs to show it can slay the dragon.
The opportunity is relatively fortuitous:…
Source link : https://sports.yahoo.com/as-eagles-and-chiefs-face-off-super-bowl-rematch-stakes-much-higher-for-one-team-than-other-165218312.html
Publish date : 2023-11-17 16:52:18
Copyright for syndicated content belongs to the linked Source.