Eagles Today publisher Ed Kracz turned to John Shipley, the publisher of SI's Jaguar Report, for five questions about Sunday's opponent, the Doug Pederson-led Jacksonville Jaguars.
The two teams will play at Lincoln Financial Field at 1 p.m. Sunday on CBS.
Q: How much has the culture changed with Doug Pederson in charge and how much has he meant so far to the organization?
John Shipley: It is a bit cliche to say a new head coach has changed a team's culture since we hear it every year, but it's actually legitimate with Doug Pederson and the Jaguars. The biggest thing he had to do to change the culture inside the building was to earn trust and inspire confidence inside the locker room.
A lot of players dealt with both trust and confidence issues after the Urban Meyer debacle, but Pederson quickly established that he was a different type of coach and could, in a way, help them heal and cover the scars from a year ago. The Jaguars are winning right now for a lot of reasons, but there is no doubt inside the building that Pederson's leadership and coaching chops have been the X-Factor.
Q: What has been the biggest impact Pederson has had on Trevor Lawrence?
Shipley: There are a lot of differences in how Trevor Lawrence is playing this year compared to his rookie season. His overall accuracy to all levels of the field has improved and so have his fundamentals inside the pocket. In terms of what Pederson himself has done to help Lawrence, though, I think it has been giving him an offensive system that allows him to play to his strengths as a point guard-type passer.
Pederson uses a lot of formations, motions, and concepts that give Lawrence quick reads, allowing him to get the ball out of his hands much quicker. The scheme is the biggest thing Pederson has done to help Lawrence, and it shows each week.
Q: How much have the two rookies, Travon Walker ad Devin Lloyd, helped this defense?
Shipley: The defense has had a lot of pieces added to it the last two offseasons, even more so than the offense. From the interior defensive line to the linebacker room to safety to cornerback, the Jaguars have made significant investments. Two of the most important pieces of the defensive rebuild have been Travon Walker and Devin Lloyd, Jacksonville's two first-round rookies.
The biggest thing that each rookie brings to the defense is versatility, and the Jaguars have made sure to maximize each player's skill set so far. Walker excels at setting the edge, running stunts and games up front, dropping into coverage, and coming off the edge with power, but he also gives the Jaguars a player who can slide inside.
Lloyd is also used in a multitude of ways by the Jaguars, with the Jaguars lining him up in multiple positions as a blitzer and utilizing his athletic skill set in man coverage. Both of these guys can absolutely fly, and their versatility has helped unlocked the Jaguars' defensive potential.
Q: Who is one under-the-radar player both on offense and defense?
Shipley: On the offense, I'll go with Jawaan Taylor. He has allowed just one pressure in three starts this season and is having a legitimate breakout season in Doug Pederson's scheme, handling Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack with ease last week. He has played at a Pro Bowl level and is a big reason the Jaguars have allowed just two sacks.
On defense, I'll go with Roy Robertson-Harris. The former Bears defensive lineman is one of the team's most explosive and athletic defenders and gives them their best push and penetration in the middle of the defense. He is solid as a pass-rusher but has shined as a run-defender, especially this year.
Q: What is your prediction for the game?
Shipley: I think this is going to be a very physical and very exciting game, but the Eagles' depth makes me want to give them the edge. The Jaguars are a good team, but they aren't ready for this stage quite yet.
Eagles 23, Jaguars 20
Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Fan Nation Eagles Today and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles or www.eaglesmaven.com and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.