Philadelphia Eagles must stick to the formula that got them to Super Bowl

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia Eagles have established a winning formula for success that doesn’t need to change now that they’re set to play on game’s biggest stage.

The Philadelphia Eagles overcame extremely long odds to make the Super Bowl.  It becomes even more impressive when you take into account that they did it without two future Hall of Famers and an MVP candidate at quarterback. So despite all of that, how were the Eagles able to run through the NFC and have themselves one win away from a championship?

Much of the credit obviously has to go to Doug Pederson and the entire Eagles coaching staff.

Pederson and company had this team prepared week in and week out and despite all of the adversity they faced, the Eagles just kept pushing forward. When you continue to lose key players week after week, it beings to get easy for teams to give up and bag it in for the rest of the season.

While so much of the credit is given to the coaching staff for what they did the other six days of the week, what they did on game day may have been the most impressive of all. Pederson has turned himself into one of the best coaches in the NFL, and one of the best game day coaches around.

From play calling to clock management to just general situational awareness, Pederson has shown that he had it all figured out this year. He has come a long way from where he was as a rookie head coach. It is pretty amazing how good of a play caller Pederson has become given the fact that he never called plays in the NFL prior to becoming the head coach of the Eagles.

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Some of the things that made Pederson and the Eagles so successful was their aggressiveness on offense and their ability to establish the run even after it struggled early on in the season. Pederson would never hesitate to go for it on fourth and short and decisions like that are ones that can pay off in the long run.

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For example, in the divisional playoff game, the Eagles were faced with a fourth and goal from the one-yard line. But rather than kicking the field goal, Pederson went for it and punched it in for the touchdown. It was those kinds of play calls that helped push the Eagles over the top in that game.

Or last week in the NFC Championship game, when the Eagles got the ball from their own 20-yard line with less than 30 seconds left. Rather than kneeling and going into the break up 21-7, Pederson stuck with his calling card and remained aggressive. The Eagles offense was able to get the ball down the field and added three points right before the half. Obviously, in that game, it didn’t make a difference in the end, but in a close game, those three points could prove to be vital.

One thing that is commonly seen around the league is once you reach the playoffs, teams begin to stray away from what they do best. A team that was once aggressive becomes extremely conservative because they are afraid of making mistakes, but in this league, if you play afraid you’re going to lose.

These past two weeks, Pederson has continued to do what he does best and has not changed his coaching style one bit. He has continued to be aggressive and make plays to win, rather than trying not to lose. He has trusted his backup quarterback to make tough throws, and decisions like that are why the Eagles are in the Super Bowl.

If you want to look at a coach who has always struggled in the postseason, look no further than Pederson’s former coach in Andy Reid. Reid was known as a great coach the other six days of the week but always seemed to struggle in the game; whether it be making adjustments of clock management.

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It is reasons like that why Reid has never had success in the playoffs. A team can not change their mentality in the playoffs and expect to see the same results you had in the regular season. There is a reason the team is in the playoffs, so wouldn’t it be wise to stick with what got you there?

Another example I can think of is Chip Kelly in the 2013 Wild Card playoff game. After an extremely successful regular season on offense, his entire mentality changed as the Eagles offense began that game very conservative. Because of that, they fell down early and by the time they came back it was too late.

Through two playoff games, we are seeing that Pederson is nothing like his two predecessors in Philadelphia. The reason the Eagles are in the Super Bowl is because Pederson has stuck with what has been so successful.

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Now, going against one of the greatest coaches of all time, Doug Pederson cannot shy away; and if he continues to coach the way he has all year, then when it is all set and done, he can be the first coach to ever lead the Eagles to a Super Bowl victory.