SERIES HISTORY: 164th regular-season meeting. Washington leads the all-time series, 84-73-5. A win would give the Redskins five consecutive for the first time since a six-game streak between 1981 and 1984. The Redskins won 27-20 at FedEx Field on Oct. 16.
KEYS TO THE GAME:
The Redskins were stable on the offensive line almost all season, even during the loss of Pro Bowl LT Trent Williams (four-game suspension) because Washington had a competent replacement in Ty Nsekhe. Williams returns this week just in time. Nsekhe (ankle) missed practice on Wednesday and left guard Shawn Lauvao, who struggled so much in Sunday's loss to Arizona, didn't practice (groin).
Meanwhile, center Spencer Long (concussion) also didn't practice Wednesday. The Redskins plugged in veteran John Sullivan, a six-year starter in Minnesota, and still performed well enough on Sunday. But they are concerned enough that veteran center Kory Lichtensteiger, the starter at the beginning of the season, was designated to return from IR in case Sullivan needs a backup.
The Redskins need to be stout on the interior because the Eagles have players like defensive tackle Fletcher Cox (four sacks), who is still a force despite his production dropping from 9.5 sacks in 2015.
Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins was 18-for-34 for 263 yards in the Redskins' 27-20 win over the Eagles on Oct. 16. Cousins had two touchdowns but has improved since that game.
Eagles rookie QB Carson Wentz threw 60 passes last week against the Bengals and has averaged 44.5 attempts per game the last six games. The large number of attempts has to do with the fact that the Eagles keep falling behind. They hope to establish the run early Sunday against the Redskins and stay with it. The Redskins are 29th in the league against the rush, allowing 4.6 yards per carry.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH:
--Redskins LG Arie Kouandjio vs. Eagles DT Fletcher Cox. Kouandjio is a good bet to play because starter Shawn Lauvao is hurt (groin) and the best alternative -- moving Spencer Long over from center -- is unlikely given Long's concussion on Sunday. Cox has been kept in check because of constant double-teams all season and is frustrated with his production. But Kouandjio, a second-year pro, has started only one game in his career.
--Redskins WR DeSean Jackson vs. Eagles CB Nolan Carroll. Ironic in a week where multiple reports linked Jackson, a free agent at the end of the season, back with Philadelphia. But there are no good options here for the Eagles, whose cornerbacks struggled with confidence lately and now face the NFL's second-best passing offense. Jackson had a 59-yard catch last week against Arizona. Since leaving Philadelphia after the 2013 season, he has 17 catches for 336 yards and a touchdown in four games against the Eagles.
FRIDAY INJURY REPORT:
--Out: S Will Blackmon (concussion, thumb), DE Anthony Lanier (shin), C Spencer Long (concussion, stinger)
--Questionable: DE Chris Baker (ankle), TE Derek Carrier (knee), LB Will Compton (hip), DE Ricky Jean Francois (foot, knee), G Shawn Lauvao (groin), T Ty Nsekhe (ankle), TE Jordan Reed (shoulder), G Brandon Scherff (ankle), LB Preston Smith (groin)
--Out: T Halapoulivaati Vaitai (knee)
Redskins WR Pierre Garcon. Mr. Reliable for the Redskins, Garcon is in his fifth season in Washington and on his way to at least 68 catches for a fifth time. He has 59, which is tied for the team lead with tight end Jordan Reed. With 714 receiving yards, Garcon is on pace for his best season since 2013, when he had 1,346 yards on 113 catches. Garcon turned 30 in August and is a free agent at the end of the season.
In the past nine road games, Redskins QB Kirk Cousins has 2,876 yards passing, 18 TDs and four interceptions. He ranks third in the NFL with 3,811 passing yards.
Washington RB Robert Kelley is third among NFL rookies with 524 rushing yards.
Eagles QB Carson Wentz ranks second among NFL rookies with 2,901 yards passing. He tied an NFL rookie record with 36 completions last week.
The Redskins have won four straight games over the Eagles, their longest winning streak in the series since a four-game streak from 1985 to 1987. The last time Washington won five (or more) in a row against Philadelphia was a six-game streak between 1981 and 1984. They should make it five straight on Sunday.
OUR PICK: Redskins, 42-30.