These Eagles took a different journey to this year’s Super Bowl


PHOENIX — These Eagles are not underdogs.

As this year’s team prepares to face the Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII on Sunday at State Farm Stadium it’s worth noting that these Eagles have taken a much different journey to the final game than the 2017 team.

The reason that 2017 team was special was because they were underdogs. They embodied that spirit. They played like they had nothing to lose. They really were counted out, especially once they got to the playoffs because they didn’t have their starting quarterback.

For the Eagles to finally break through and win the first Super Bowl in franchise history in that fashion, it was extremely fitting. Because Philly really relates to that underdog mentality.

But this team is different.

And that’s fun too.

That’s not to say that the 2022 team hasn’t had its doubters. And that’s not to say there aren’t some individuals on this team who have been underdogs in their careers. But this is also a team that started off the season with an 8-0 record and was the last undefeated team in the NFL. This is a team with eight Pro Bowlers. This is a team that led the best division in football from the first week of the season. And now they’ve outscored their first two opponents 69-14 in the playoffs.

They’re actually favored over Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs.

And in some ways, that’s an even harder route to take.


Because for most of this season, the Eagles have gotten everybody’s best shot. There was a lot of talk about the Eagles’ weak schedule this year but they did play good teams. Including the playoffs, they were 9-1 against teams that finished the season with winning records and 9-0 in such games with Jalen Hurts.

There’s no doubt that the 2017 team was special. It felt like a team of destiny and that felt like the right way for the Eagles to win their first Super Bowl.

But this team is better. Overall, it’s more talented. And in some ways it’s good that this team has a much different identity.

Howie Roseman this offseason built a juggernaut. The one similarity between 2017 and 2022 is that every move he made in both offseasons seemed to work out. But the level of talent on this team is better. The Eagles don’t really have any weaknesses on their roster and will have all 22 starters suited up for Super Bowl LVII. In the last Super Bowl, they played without several key starters, including MVP candidate Carson Wentz.

This time, the Eagles will have their MVP candidate. Jalen Hurts has been playing through a shoulder injury and he might not be 100 percent, but he’ll be out there without restrictions, running an offense that has shown incredible balance all season.

And when he’s on the sideline, the Eagles’ No. 2-ranked defense will take the field. This is a defense that has sacked the quarterback 78 times in 19 games, good for third all-time behind the 1984 and 1985 Chicago Bears.

The Chiefs might have the best quarterback in the NFL on Sunday at State Farm Stadium, but the Eagles have the better team. And that has a chance to be this team’s legacy.

There will never be another first Super Bowl champion Eagles team. That will always belong to the 2017 squad. But on Sunday, the 2022 Eagles have a chance to become immortal too.

And they’re doing it their own way.

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