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Samsonite Make Your Case: Marquee Matchup

All the interviews are over and the analysis has been done a million times. The Patriots and Eagles will go at it on Sunday in Super Bowl LII and the winner will be making history.

New England is obviously looking for its sixth Super Bowl title, which would tie the Patriots with Pittsburgh for the most titles in NFL history. Philadelphia is chasing its first title, and if the Eagles can pull it off they'll have done so with a backup quarterback and an impressive defense that is among the best in the league in a variety of categories.

Tom Brady leads the Patriots top-ranked offense against that formidable defense and that's certainly one of the marquee matchups that will be worth watching. But the Eagles have some weapons of their own and they'll take on an improving Patriots defense and try to keep pace.

With just two days left before kickoff, our Samsonite Make Your Case question of the week is: Which matchup will decide Super Bowl LII, the Patriots offense against Philly's defense or the Eagles offense against the Patriots defense?

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PFW's Andy Hart says ...

PATRIOTS OFFENSE

Tom Brady is the GOAT for a reason and when he's on the sport's biggest stage the story has to be about him. Brady leads the Patriots top-ranked offense against Philly's stout and stingy defense that finished fourth in points allowed. How that matchup unfolds will decide the game.

On the rare occasions the Patriots have trouble in the postseason it's usually due to the offense struggling. That generally happens when Brady isn't well-protected and the passing game bogs down. That was the case in both Super Bowl losses to the Giants, and twice against Denver in the conference championship as well.

The Eagles front is worth the hype, led by All-Pro Fletcher Cox. The Patriots will need to focus on him to prevent him from disrupting things. The Eagles will need to make sure the create pressure without blitzing, otherwise Brady will pick them apart.

That's the crux of the matchup in Super Bowl LII, and ultimately whichever side gets the edge will take home the Lombardi Trophy.
--AH

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PFW's Paul Perillo ...

EAGLES OFFENSE

If the Eagles are to pull off the upset it will be due to the play of Nick Foles and the offense. That was the case in the NFC title game when Foles tore the top-ranked Vikings defense apart, and he has enough weapons to cause some problems again in the Vikings home stadium.

The Patriots offense will move the ball and score points, because that's what Tom Brady does. Philly will need to keep pace that's where Foles and the offense enter the picture. The Eagles have depth at running back and wide receiver and have a talented tight end in Zach Ertz. Those weapons will need to produce, and Foles will need to get them the football.

In order to beat the Patriots you need to find a way to get to the high-20s or perhaps even the 30s. The Patriots defense has been much better in the second half of the season, and it will need to continue that trend if New England is going to take home trophy No. 6.
--PP

Now it's your turn to cast a vote in this week's Samsonite Make Your Case poll question.

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