In our new video series, “In the Trenches,” Pro Football Weekly is trying to decide which team has the best offense in the NFL. We’re leaving it up to the fans to decide. We’ve matched up the top eight offenses in the league in a head-to-head bracket. The first first-round matchup has the Eagles facing off against the Lions.
Here’s a sampling of what PFW's editors had to say:
Senior editor Eric Edholm:
“For me, it comes down to balance. The Eagles will be less turnover-prone, especially in the red zone, with an improved defense. Michael Vick too often felt the pressure to make all the plays himself early in the season, and he realized that he has enough tools around him to distribute the wealth, find the open man and let the playmakers do their thing. RB LeSean McCoy is vastly better than any Lions back, and they are all injury-prone. I love Calvin Johnson, but the Eagles have more difference makers catching the ball.”
Associate editor Arthur Arkush:
"My pick is the Eagles for the simple fact that Philly’s offense has two explosive dimensions while Detroit lacks the ability to move the ball on the ground. In addition to Shady McCoy, Michael Vick remains one of the more potent running quarterbacks in football, in addition to being able to strike downfield with home-run hitters like DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin."
Associate editor Kevin Fishbain:
"Eagles. It’s all about Shady McCoy. He gives Philly a dynamic rushing attack that allows them a more balanced offense than Detroit. The Eagles also have more depth among their pass catchers than the Lions."
Associate editor Eli Kaberon:
"There may not be an offense with better balance than the Eagles. Take away their deep passing game, and they’ll hit you underneath with screens. Play up, and their speedy wideouts will go long. Take away the passing game completely, and RB LeSean McCoy has running lanes. And don’t forget dual-threat QB Michael Vick, who still may be the best in the NFL at making something out of nothing."
Editor-in-chief Keith Schleiden:
"Both the Detroit and Philly offenses are crazy productive and capable of putting up impressive numbers even against the NFL’s better defenses. Each features a big-time quarterback (when healthy) and some dynamic weapons at receiver. However, the edge has to go to the Eagles because of their running game, led by the versatile LeSean McCoy."
Senior editor Mike Wilkening:
"The Eagles get the edge, and it comes down to one player: RB LeSean McCoy. He’s a difference maker, one of the game’s top backs, and he gives the Eagles’ offense a dimension the Lions’ attack so often lacks — a strong running game."
Associate editor Dan Parr:
"There's no topping the Stafford-to-Johnson connection, but Detroit's deficiencies at running back and a so-so offensive line cannot be overlooked. Philadelphia has much better balance and that gives them a slight edge."
Managing editor Mike Holbrook:
"Philly doesn't have a combination as consistently lethal as Matthew Stafford to Calvin Johnson, but the Eagles have the deeper, more talented offense — at every position. I'd like to see Michael Vick get back to his 2010 form and I want to see how the Eagles make up for the loss of Pro Bowl OLT Jason Peters, but still, the Eagles are the choice."