PHILADELPHIA -- The feeling of dominance hasn't been encrypted in the Philadelphia fan. For years the Philadelphia Eagles have played second fiddle in the NFC East to the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants -- even though the franchise turned its fortunes around this century.
Always viewed as the underdog despite winning 10 NFC East titles since 2001, the Eagles can finally view themselves as the big brother in the division. The franchise has been to seven conference championship games since 2001 (winning three of them) and has earned the No. 1 seed five times -- the most in the conference.
Even with a Super Bowl title in 2017, the Eagles were the underdogs in each of those three games despite having a 13-3 record and locked in as the No. 1 seed in the conference. That team needed to knock off Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in the middle of their second dynasty to end a 57-year championship drought.
This time it's different. The Eagles are good -- very good.
Philadelphia steamrolled its opponents on the way to Super Bowl LVII, becoming the first team in NFL history to score 30-plus points in the playoffs while allowing 10 or fewer points in consecutive games. The Eagles outscored their opponents 69-14 in their two postseason games, outscoring their opponents by 24-plus points in both contests. The Eagles joined the 1985 Chicago Bears, 1988 San Francisco 49ers and 1989 San Francisco 49ers as the only teams to win consecutive playoff games by 24-plus points -- all of those teams won the Super Bowl.
Philadelphia is also the first team to have the Kansas City Chiefs as underdogs in the Patrick Mahomes era (the Eagles open Super Bowl LVII as two-point favorites per Caesars Sportsbook). The Eagles are giving plenty of reasons to believe they are on the verge of becoming one of the greatest single-season teams in NFL history -- just looking at the numbers alone.
- The Eagles have the most rushing touchdowns in a season in NFL history (39, including postseason)
- Philadelphia has 78 sacks on the season, the third-most by a team in NFL history (including postseason)
- The Eagles are the first team to have four players have 10-plus sacks in a season (Haason Reddick, Josh Sweat, Javon Hargrave, Brandon Graham)
- The 2022 Eagles offense is the fourth team in NFL history with five 300-plus passing games and five 200-yard rushing games each in a season.
- Per PFF, the Eagles have the No. 1 pass-blocking grade and No. 1 pass-rush grade in the 2022 season.
- The Eagles led the NFC in points per game (28.1) and yards per game (389.1).
- Philadelphia's +55 scoring differential in the postseason is tied for third highest in NFL history entering the Super Bowl.
- The Eagles led the NFL with eight Pro Bowl selections and had nine alternates. Every member of the offensive line was either a Pro Bowl selection or a Pro Bowl alternate.
- Jalen Hurts is 16-1 as a starter this season, one of five quarterbacks to win 16-plus games and lose just zero or one game entering the Super Bowl.
The Eagles are one of the best teams the NFL has seen in recent years, despite not falling into the trap of having a high-octane passing attack with flash. Philadelphia dominates in the trenches and has the best secondary in football.
Then there's Hurts, a franchise quarterback who is just 24 years old and already is a second-team All-Pro. Hurts is the youngest quarterback in franchise history to start a Super Bowl and Nick Sirianni is the youngest head coach in franchise history to coach a Super Bowl.
Can any team actually beat the Eagles in 2022? The Kansas City Chiefs -- led by former MVP and this season's MVP favorite Mahomes -- will be the final team to try.
If the Eagles win Super Bowl LVII, they'll be remembered as one of the greatest teams in NFL history. Philadelphia won't have the legacy of the 1972 Miami Dolphins, 1985 Chicago Bears, or 1989 San Francisco 49ers -- even though they are a win away from being in that conversation.