Last Updated: 2018-02-05
In the aftermath of Sunday’s thrilling 41-33 upset victory for the underdog Philadelphia Eagles over the favored New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52, there are a couple important questions that need to be addressed. First of all, is this the end of New England’s dynasty? Secondly, can Philadelphia repeat next season with franchise quarterback Carson Wentz back replacing Super Bowl 52 MVP Nick Foles?
Time will tell, although the answer could very well be “Yes” to both questions. The Eagles will make some changes personnel-wise and must figure out what to do with Foles, who was outstanding and played better than anyone could have expected. Even Wentz could not have performed any better, but he remains the clear-cut starter and may have topped Tom Brady of the Patriots for NFL MVP honors had he not suffered a torn ACL in Week 14. Philly is still loaded and could be the league’s next dynasty.
For New England, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia are both headed elsewhere to lead the Indianapolis Colts and Detroit Lions, respectively. Head coach Bill Belichick will need to replace them along with some of his key players, which may include cornerback Malcolm Butler and tight end Rob Gronkowski. Butler was mysteriously benched for the Super Bowl and could have definitely helped a struggling defense, something that Belichick may never live down as he and Brady continue to chase a sixth Vince Lombardi Trophy. Gronkowski’s injury history seems to have him contemplating retirement as well even though he has two years remaining on his contract.
Regardless, the Patriots will have Brady back next season plus wide receivers Brandin Cooks — who took a vicious hit in the Super Bowl and missed the entire second half — and Julian Edelman off a knee injury. While their offense should be fine, Brady is getting older and can’t play at an MVP level forever. However, the defense is a much bigger concern, and the return of linebacker Dont’a Hightower can only help. New England has chosen not to retain home-grown talent like Chandler Jones and Jamie Collins recently, and the team’s pass rush was a major concern at times, especially in the Super Bowl against Foles.
New England and Philadelphia are two favorites to meet in the Super Bowl again next year, with other top contenders like the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers hoping to get back to the big game. The Minnesota Vikings are another intriguing team depending on who is under center for them next season, with Kirk Cousins reportedly having them as his top choice this offseason. The Jacksonville Jaguars also should not be discounted in the futures market considering the huge strides they made this year. That said, a Patriots-Eagles rematch in Atlanta would not be the worst thing that could happen.
Stay tuned to BangTheBook.com for breaking NFL news and updates on Super Bowl 53 future odds!
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