Cam Jurgens

The Cam Jurgens Effect on the Eagles' running attack

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Cam Jurgens has played in 4 ½ games this year. 

When he’s been on the field, the Eagles have run 149 times for 698 yards - or 4.7 yards per carry. 

When he hasn’t been on the field, they’ve run 168 times for 583 yards – or 3.5 yards per carry.

Quite a difference.

There are other factors that have affected the Eagles’ success or lack of success running the ball. Jalen Hurts’ health, play calling, opposing defenses.

But 1.2 yards per carry is an enormous difference, and it’s safe to say that Jurgens’ presence is at least a significant part of that disparity.

The first month of the season, the Eagles were third in the NFL in yards per carry and second in yards per game. 

Then Jurgens suffered a foot injury just before halftime in the Week 5 win over Washington.

During the six weeks (and five games) he missed – the Rams, Jets, Dolphins, Commanders and Cowboys – they ranked 30th in yards per carry and 24th in yards per game.

Then he came back Monday night in Kansas City and they ran for 114 yards and 4.2 yards per pop, their best performance on the ground since Jurgens got hurt.

D’Andre Swift enjoyed his best day in a month and a half, with 76 yards and a touchdown on just 12 carries along with 31 receiving yards.

None of this is a coincidence. 

The Eagles are back to full strength on the offensive line, and they’re hopeful that means they can continue to run the ball when they want to and when they need to down the stretch.

“It was huge,” Jurgens said. “We’ve got some great backs and we get Swift the ball in open space, he's going to make someone miss, and it was fun to see him out there again (and also) passing the ball and getting some of the screens going, too."

When the Eagles rush for 100 yards they’re 28-8 under Nick Sirianni. They’re 6-6 when they don’t.

“Yeah, I mean it kills the defense," Jurgens said. "You get a big run right away, and then it's like 2nd-and-1. You’ve just got to keep at it, keep running. There's gonna be plays throughout the game where one person doesn’t get a block and you lose a yard, but you keep at it, and he's going to get it next time.”

Even with some sub-par games while Jurgens was out, Swift is still on pace for nearly 1,200 rushing yards and more than 1,500 scrimmage yards. His 4.7 yards per carry is 7th-best in the league among backs with at least 100 carries, and his 690 yards are 3rd-most, behind Christian McCaffrey and one-time Eagles training camp phenom Raheem Mostert.

The Bills are 29th in the league against the run allowing 4.5 yards per pop, although they’ve been much better of late, allowing just 3.6 the last six games after 5.8 the first five weeks of the season.

If the Eagles are going to get past the Bills Sunday at the Linc and find their way to 10-1, they're probably going to have to lean on the ground attack.

Fortunately, Jurgens is 100 percent and we've all seen what kind of difference he makes.

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