Skip to main content

Philadelphia Eagles vs. Arizona Cardinals Prediction: Jalen Hurts and Company Look to Stay Undefeated

Hurts to share the field with Kyler Murray in matchup of former Oklahoma QBs.

The lone undefeated NFL team heads to Arizona as the Eagles take on the Cardinals on Sunday. These two played just two years ago in Jalen Hurts' second career start; he and fellow former Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray each produced more than 400 total yards in Arizona's 33-26 win, its seventh victory in the last 10 games of this series going back to 2005.

The Eagles nearly lost their undefeated season last week, when they fell behind 14-0 to the Jaguars in less-than-pristine weather. It was one Jacksonville couldn't hold, though, as the Eagles overtook the Jags and picked up their fourth win of the season 29-21. Miles Sanders was the story with a career-high 27 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns. He picked up the offense during a solid-but-unspectacular Hurts performance. The defense forced five turnovers, including an interception James Bradberry returned a touchdown. The win showed the team is capable of winning in many different ways.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals used a 16-6 fourth quarter to pull away from the Panthers in a 26-16 road victory. Kyler Murray was 23-of-32 for 207 passing yards with two touchdowns and one interception. They didn't get a ton from the ground game, as three different running backs toted the football combined to pick up 3.6 yards per carry. But the defense harassed Baker Mayfield into two interceptions and two sacks as he clearly didn't look comfortable in the pocket last Sunday.

Philadelphia (4-0) at Arizona (2-2)

Kickoff: Sunday, Oct. 8 at 4:25 p.m. ET
Live Stream: fuboTV (Start your free trial)
Spread: Eagles -5
Tickets: As low as $116 on*

Three Things to Watch

1. Intangibles
The Eagles have a huge potential look-ahead spot here as they host the Cowboys at home on "Sunday Night Football" on Oct. 16. It's their third road game of the season as they've alternated road and home contests through the first five weeks of the season. The Cardinals, meanwhile, have been the opposite, alternating home and road tilts each week. They are on the road in Seattle next week, so focus shouldn't be an issue as they try to inch above the .500 mark.

2. Another reunion
This year has been full of reunions for the Eagles, who have gone up against someone from their past each week. The past two weeks, of course, were the biggest ones, as they went up against former quarterback Carson Wentz and head coach Doug Pederson, who were instrumental figures during the team's Super Bowl run. Pederson had a solid game plan in place for the Jaguars, and one has to wonder how different that game is if the weather was better for both teams. This week, it's a matchup with longtime tight end Zach Ertz, who has been fantastic for the Cardinals. With DeAndre Hopkins out of the lineup, Murray has needed a solid target to rely on, and Ertz has been that. The former Eagle has had six or more catches in three straight contests and has turned them into 10 first downs. Covering the tight end will be important for the road team.

3. Offseason acquisitions
Hurts and A.J. Brown get a lot of the headlines for the Eagles, and rightfully so as Brown is third in the league in yards — just two behind Buffalo's Stefon Diggs. The former Titans wide receiver opens things up for the rest of the offense, and Dallas Goedert and DeVonta Smith have taken advantage of it. But the bigger improvements are on the defensive side, where former Charger Kyzir White has 23 tackles and has greatly improved a weak linebacking corps. C.J. Gardner Johnson is making a few small mistakes but is still learning the system after arriving late in the offseason from the Saints, and Bradberry has two interceptions and 10 tackles since coming over from the Giants. Safe to say Howie Roseman had a great offseason.

Final Analysis

Putting aside my Eagles fan biases, this game worries me with Dallas up next. Philly is clearly the better team, and there are going to be a ton of Eagles fans in the stands, so that will help too. I certainly think Vegas is off with the line, as this should be a tighter spread. This one comes down to a late field goal as Philly continues to be the lone undefeated in football.

Prediction: Eagles 26, Cardinals 24

— Written by Matt Josephs, who is a part of the Athlon Sports Contributor Network. Follow him on Twitter @MidMajorMatt.

*Price as of publication.