INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 08: A.J. Brown #11 of the Philadelphia Eagles makes a catch past Derion Kendrick #1 of the Los Angeles Rams in the second quarter at SoFi Stadium on October 08, 2023 in Inglewood, California.

For the second straight season, the Eagles have started 5-0. Has it been as pretty as last year? No. There were some nail-biting wins in there. But your nails were probably fine in this 5th win, at least in the second half. Yes, the Rams got out to a quick start, scoring on 2 of their first 3 drives. But other than that, it was a mostly stress-free win for the Eagles. They traveled out to LA, to play in front of a friendly crowd, and left with a 23-14 win.

Another 300-yard game by Jalen Hurts. AJ Brown eclipsed 100 yards again. And Dallas Goedert showed up in the passing game for the first time all year, getting 8 catches, 117 yards, and a TD. The Eagles were moving the ball all game long and won the time of possession battle by over 15 minutes.

Perhaps more importantly, the defense stepped up. They held Matthew Stafford to just 222 yards when he came into the game with the 2nd most passing yards in the league. The Rams run game was non-existent. And they gave up just 14 points while racking up 4 sacks. The defense was easily the biggest concern leaving that week 4 game vs the Commanders. But they stepped up big time. The new addition of Bradley Roby made a huge difference, as did rookie Eli Ricks when he saw the field.

It was just a good overall team win. Were there some things to complain about? Sure. But it was probably their best game yet, with only the week 3 win over the Bucs being close.

So let’s explore that win a little further. What did they do so well? What individual performances stuck out the most? And what does reaching 5-0 mean for their chances to get back to the Super Bowl?

Here are 6 numbers that tell the story of their impressive win over the Braves:

  • 72.2%

    The Eagles converted 13 of their 18 3rd down opportunities. A conversion rate of 72.2%. Who they were playing makes that even more impressive. The Rams came into the game 2nd in the league, allowing a 3rd down conversion just 26.7% of the time. The Eagles knocked them all the way down to 15th in the league. Oh, and on one of those 3rd downs, the Eagles literally conceded and didn’t even try to convert it, by running a QB sneak on a 3rd and 3. So it is more like 13 of 17.

  • 1,839

    AJ Brown is off to quite the start. In fact, it puts him on a historic pace of 1,839 yards. It would not be an NFL record, since Calvin Johnson once put up an insane 1,964 receiving yards in a season, but it would break the Eagles Single Season record Brown just set last season. And it would be the 5th most of all time in the NFL. The connection between Brown and Jalen Hurts is getting even better. Hurts has the ultimate trust in Brown, and Brown rewards Hurts for trusting him nearly every time.

  • 3.5

    Jalen Carter is off to a tremendous start to his career. 3.5 sacks through 5 games. He got two yesterday. A 12-sack pace for the season. But even more impressive is when you compare him to the rest of the rookie DTs. Rueben Frank was the first I saw point this out, but every other rookie DT has 3.5 sacks combined. Carter on his own is outpacing all of his peers. He is up there among the league leaders in QB Pressures as well. The NFL made a mistake letting Carter fall to the Eagles.

  • 42.4

    The defense was not looking good in the first half. They only took the field 3 times and gave up 2 touchdowns. But the second-half defense was as good as you can ask them to be. Not only did they shut the Rams out in the half, but they didn’t even let them move the ball. The Rams never got past the 50-yard line all half. Just 95 yards of offense allowed in 5 drives. A lot of credit has to go to Sean Desai for adjusting. But the great play of Bradley Roby also needs to be mentioned. He allowed a QB rating of just 42.4 while being targeted 6 times. If he can play that well going forward, it would fix a lot of problems for the Eagles.

  • 33%

    The one knock on the Eagles leaving this game is the red zone offense. They scored just 2 TDs on 6 trips to the Red Zone (33%). Granted one of those was their final drive where they clearly were only interested in running time off the clock. But even if you give them 2 of 5, it is not good enough. And it is now a trend across the last 3 games. They struggled to finish drives against the Bucs, Commanders, and now the Rams. They are scoring, and moving the ball, which is good. But they cannot be this reliant on Field Goals going forward. As much as we all love Jake Elliott, we need him kicking more extra points and fewer Field Goals.

  • 89.8%

    Since 1990, 59 teams have started the season 5-0. Including the Eagles last season. Only 6 went on to miss the playoffs. Meaning 89.8% of the time, if you start 5-0, you make the playoffs. In that same time, 15 teams that started at least 5-0 went on to make the Super Bowl, and 6 won the Super Bowl. There was also one team that started 4-0 and won the Super Bowl. This year they are 5-0 again, though they do have some company after the 49ers tore the Cowboys a new one to improve to 5-0 as well. It really does feel like it will come down to Eagles vs Niners again.

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