The Atlanta Falcons might not see a potential MVP candidate when they open the year.
Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz says it’ll be reportedly be “close” for him to get the week one home start against Atlanta. He’s recently started taking on 11-on-11 activities in practice but will not play for any preseason action.
The Thursday opener would be his first full-contact performance against another team since tearing his ACL and LCL last December. Recent Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles would start in his place. He, of course, led the second-half Philly revival that took down the Falcons in the divisional round of the playoffs this past January and took the Eagles to a Super Bowl LII win over the Patriots.
Having Foles in a playoff groove versus having Foles start out fresh might look a bit different, but so would Wentz while trying to get used to game time play against a fast, physical defense like the Falcons’ unit.
However you slice it, the Falcons will have a bit of an upper hand over Philly, though on the road, with the quarterback uncertainty and injuries up in the City of Brotherly Love. It’ll still be a game-and-a-half, but when you go against a team like the Eagles, take what you can get in terms of advantages.
Atlanta needs to get all the early wins they can to establish themselves as a threat in the NFC, so count the Sept. 6 opener as already a key matchup. It could give either bird-based team a higher playoff seeding in a head-to-head situation and could give Atlanta a bit of confidence going into the rest of the schedule knowing that they’ve avenged their January loss.
We’ll see if it’s a fresh-off-injury Wentz or Foles behind center when it comes time to kick 2018 off for real.