The following is an excerpt of the Eagles Preview Chapter from Warren Sharp’s 2024 Football Preview book. In addition to Warren’s deep, detailed write-up on all 32 NFL teams, each chapter features page after page of full-color charts, stats, and heatmaps to help you fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of every team heading into the 2024 NFL season. Click here for a full FREE chapter from the 2024 Football Preview.

In both the 2023 and 2022 seasons, the Eagles were 10-1 through Week 12.

While that mark led the 2022 Eagles to the Super Bowl, the 2023 version fizzled.

But even in those first 12 weeks, the 2023 Eagles didn’t remind me at all of the 2022 version, despite their record being identical.

Which is hard to say if you’re just looking at final stats from traditional sources.

Through 12 weeks, the 2022 Eagles scored 303 points while the 2023 version scored 310 points.

The 2022 Eagles were a mere 6-5 ATS (.545) while the 2023 version was 7-2-2 (.778).

The 2022 Eagles scored 2.51 points/drive while the 2023 version scored 2.53 points/drive.

The 2022 Eagles scored on 41.5% of drives while the 2023 version scored on 45.4% of drives.

From a 30,000-foot view, the surface-level stats of the Eagles were a touch better in 2023 as compared to 2022.

But the issue was how they achieved those final scores.

The 2022 Eagles skated down the stretch in all of those games, pulling starters and letting the foot off the gas in the second half because they led by incredible margins.

The 2023 Eagles were the exact opposite.

The 2023 Eagles led at halftime in just six of their first 12 games.

On average, the Eagles were losing by 1.0 points at halftime.

Through the same span in 2022, the Eagles trailed in just two games and led by an average of 7.8 points at halftime, the #1 highest margin in the NFL.

The changes were evident even at the start of the season when the Eagles won five straight games.

It was visible on TV. There was discomfort.

New Offensive Coordinator Brian Johnson wasn’t running nearly as smooth a ship as Shane Steichen the prior two seasons.

Let’s start by looking at first down passes in the first half of games.

  • 2022: 9.5 air yards/att, 2.67 seconds time-to-throw, 30% of att holding the ball for 3+ seconds, 30% pressure rate, 17% of att thrown at/behind the line of scrimmage
  • 2023: 7.5 air yards/att, 3.04 seconds time-to-throw, 39% of att holding the ball for 3+ seconds, 39% pressure rate, 25% of att thrown at/behind line of scrimmage

The differences, as did the problems such numbers presented, leap off the page.

The 2023 offense threw the ball substantially SHORTER despite holding onto the ball LONGER and received QB pressure MORE OFTEN.

That combination shouldn’t have existed.

If you were passing shorter, you shouldn’t have held onto the ball as long.

If you were passing shorter, you shouldn’t have gotten pressured as often.

And yet that was the Eagles’ first down passing offense in 2023.

Second downs were similar, but the problem was most glaring on first down.

And because first down pass efficiency was such a staple of success for the 2022 Eagles, the massive drop in efficiency crippled the first half offense in 2023.

This analysis continues in the 2024 Football Preview

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