Friday, November 28, 2014
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Eagles-Raiders What We'll Be Watching

Third-down Performance: The Eagles were one of the league’s better third-down teams in the first six games, converting 45.9 percent of their third-down opportunities. But they converted just 7 of 30 in their back-to-back losses to the Cowboys and Giants. Mike Vick and Matt Barkley completed just three third-down pass attempts last week, none for a first down.

Eagles-Raiders What We'll Be Watching

Eagles tight end James Casey. (Jack Demspey/AP)
Eagles tight end James Casey. (Jack Demspey/AP)

Third-down Performance: The Eagles were one of the league’s better third-down teams in the first six games, converting 45.9 percent of their third-down opportunities. But they converted just 7 of 30 in their back-to-back losses to the Cowboys and Giants. Mike Vick and Matt Barkley completed just three third-down pass attempts last week, none for a first down.

The Case of the Running Quarterback: The Raiders’ Terrelle Pryor actually is ranked higher in the league in rushing (tied for 18th) than he is in passing (25th). He’s averaging almost nine carries a game and 7.4 yards per carry. He had a 93-yard touchdown run against the Steelers last week, which was the longest TD run by a quarterback in NFL history. The Eagles need to limit the damage he does with his legs Sunday.

Getting Shady Into the Sunlight: The Eagles’ ground game has stalled. LeSean McCoy somehow still leads the league in rushing, but has averaged just 3.4 yards per carry over the last four games. In the first 18 quarters this season, he had 26 rushing first downs and 13 double-digit-yard runs. In the last 14 quarters, he’s got just 10 and four. This isn’t a good week to get untracked. The Raiders are fourth in the league in yards allowed per carry (3.6).

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Tight End Involvement: After signing James Casey, after drafting Zach Ertz, tight ends figured to play a prominent role in the Eagles’ passing game. But they have a total of just 30 catches and 2 TDs from the position so far. The Raiders have been very effective at neutralizing opposing tight ends this season. They’ve allowed just 21 catches for 263 yards and 2 TDs by them.

Turnover Time: Terrelle Pryor has just seven career starts and makes the kinds of mistakes a quarterback with seven career starts makes. He’s thrown five interceptions in the last two games (53 attempts) and is 30th in the league in interception percentage. The Eagles failed to pick off Eli Manning last week, but have six interceptions in their last four games.

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Paul Domowitch Daily News NFL Columnist
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Eagletarian is your home for comprehensive coverage of the Philadelphia Eagles.

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Paul Domowitch Daily News NFL Columnist
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