Five thoughts on the Eagles' schedule

Assuming there is a 2011 season, here are five thoughts on the Eagles' schedule, which was released Tuesday night:

1. The most brutal stretch? How about Weeks 11-13? The Birds play at the Giants, are home against New England (4:15) and then have to face the Seahawks in Seattle for the Thursday night game. That's going to be a very difficult spot for them. What looks like the easiest stretch is Weeks 4-6 when the Eagles host the 49ers before facing the Bills and Redskins on the road.

2. Last year, five of the Eagles' six division games came in the second half of the season. Those are much more spread out in 2011. The Birds play the Giants, Cowboys and Redskins once each in the first half of the season, and then once more in the second half.

3. Could there be a Kevin Kolb vs. his old team storyline? For the last couple of months, I've been listing 14 teams as QB-needy. Six of them are on the Eagles' schedule: the 49ers, Bills, Redskins, Cardinals, Seahawks and Dolphins. San Francisco, Arizona and Seattle are among the teams that could have some level of interest in Kolb.

4. The Eagles will not have to get on a plane from Week 6 to Week 12. They play in Washington, have the bye, host the Cowboys, Bears and Cardinals, play at the Giants and host the Patriots. Not an easy stretch, but the only road games in that seven-week stretch are in D.C. and New Jersey.

5. If you're planning a trip, I say do Miami. There's the weather factor, but also, the game is in Week 14, meaning it will likely have importance. It's early enough that most teams will still be in the mix for a playoff berth, but late enough that it will feel like they're playing for something. A trip to Seattle is attractive too, but a Thursday night game makes it tough, and like I said above, that's shaping up as a difficult spot for the Eagles.

One more for good measure: Coming off the Week 7 bye, the Eagles get three straight home games. Three of four (and four of six) after the bye are in primetime.


Sunday, Sept. 11, at St. Louis, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 18, at Atlanta, 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

Sunday, Sept. 25, vs. N.Y. Giants, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 2, vs. San Francisco, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 9, at Buffalo, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 16, at Washington, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 23, BYE

Sunday, Oct. 30, vs. Dallas, 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

Monday, Nov. 7, vs. Chicago, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN)

Sunday, Nov. 13, vs. Arizona, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Nov. 20, at N.Y. Giants, 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

Sunday, Nov. 27, vs. New England, 4:15 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 1, at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. (NFLN)

Sunday, Dec. 11, at Miami, 1 p.m.

Sunday, Dec. 18, vs. N.Y. Jets, 4:15 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 24, at Dallas, 4:15 p.m.

Sunday, Jan. 1, vs. Washington, 1 p.m.

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