Eagles

Eagles-Chiefs 5 matchups to watch

The Eagles were able to take down Washington in their opener but things don't get any easier. 
 
Now, they'll face a Kansas City team that knocked off the defending Super Bowl champions in Week 1. And Andy Reid has an extra few days to prepare; he usually uses those extra days to perfection. 
 
There will be plenty of familiarity on both sides of the field Sunday, but the bottom line is that the Eagles are going to a tough place to play against a really good team. It won't be easy to pull off a win. 
 
If they do, it'll likely be because they won these matchups: 
 
Kareem Hunt vs. Eagles run defense
Hunt fumbled on his first NFL carry but then rebounded to have one of the best performances from a rookie we've ever seen. Hunt picked up 246 yards from scrimmage (148 rushing, 98 receiving) — the most ever in an NFL debut. He also had three total touchdowns. 
 
So the Eagles will have their hands full. They'll need a team effort to bring him down. In his debut, Hunt forced eight missed tackles and averaged 4.0 yards after contact per attempt, according to ProFootballFocus. 
 
For the most part, the Eagles bottled up Washington's running backs in Week 1 with one major exception. Chris Thompson's 29-yard touchdown reception featured several missed tackles. The Eagles can't give Hunt extra chances as a runner or a receiver. 
 
Alshon Jeffery vs. Marcus Peters 
Jeffery didn't have a great debut with the Eagles and he didn't even face off against Josh Norman all day. Jeffery had just three catches for 38 yards against Washington and missed a couple of jump balls that would have been tough catches — but that's why they paid him. 
 
The Chiefs will certainly miss Eric Berry the rest of the season, but they still have Peters, one of the best cornerbacks in the league. Eventually, the Eagles hope Sidney Jones will follow in Peters' footsteps to be a great corner from the University of Washington. 
 
Tyreek Hill vs. Jalen Mills
Mills had a pretty good game Sunday. He picked up his first career interception and made a huge play on a jump ball in 1-on-1 coverage against Terrelle Pryor (see story). But the Eagles are definitely going to miss Ronald Darby (dislocated ankle). With Darby out, Mills is now the Eagles' top corner, but he simply doesn't have the same speed. A few times last Sunday, Pryor was able to run right past Mills. 
 
Now, Mills is about to see a whole different kind of speed. NBC did a great job explaining just how fast Hill is when they said his high school 200-meter time would have placed him sixth at the Olympics in Rio in 2016. That's nuts.

Jason Kelce vs. Bennie Logan 
We all know Kelce seems to struggle against some of the bigger and more powerful nose tackles in the league. Logan fits that bill, although the two know each other pretty well. They went against each other in practice for years, so they should both know each other's tendencies. This will be fun to watch. 
 
Mitchell Schwartz vs. Brandon Graham 
Graham had two sacks in the Eagles' opener last week and has a chance to do even more damage Sunday in Kansas City. He'll face off against Chiefs right tackle Schwartz, who had a decent opener himself but is coming off a year in which he gave up nine sacks, tied for the most among all offensive tackles, according to ProFootballFocus. There will be a chance to get pressure on the other side, too, against left tackle Eric Fisher. 
 
Bonus matchup: Student vs. teacher
I didn't want to include this in the five because Andy Reid and Doug Pederson are both offensive coaches, so it's not like their units are going to go against each other. But they're still facing off. This is a battle between Reid, who really gave Pederson his career, and Pederson, who owes him a lot. As CSN's Reuben Frank pointed out, Reid is 8-3 against his former assistants and is 3-0 against them since heading to Kansas City (see story). This one is even more unique because Pederson isn't just one of Reid's former assistants, he's one of his former players.

Timeouts are going to go fast in this game. 
 
"Yeah, obviously it's a tough task," Pederson said. "[Reid's] teams are always well-prepared. They're a disciplined group. You see that, very consistent in how they go about their preparation during the week. And listen, it just comes down to the preparation and hard work for them, and that's what he's done in his past. And I think sometimes, in my position, I don't want to put any added stress or pressure on myself to go perform."