Why Eagles need to fear Brock Purdy during Sunday's epic showdown

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy (13)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy (13) / Perry Knotts/GettyImages

4:25 p.m. ET. Sunday, Dec. 3. 10-1. 49ers -1.5. Fox. 49ers-Eagles opening. 54. 8-3. 42

While the Eagles may view Brock Purdy as the weakest offensive link on the 49ers, he's the one player who can do the most damage to Philly on Sunday.

Week 13 puts the San Francisco 49ers in a rematch of last year's NFC Championship game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

This time, a healthy Brock Purdy and Co. will take the field on Sunday in what's easily the biggest game of the Niners' 2023 regular-season campaign to date.

Despite San Francisco's quarterback playing in only his second NFL season, Purdy has proven he is capable of leading the 49ers to the postseason and more, potentially. On the season, he has a completion percentage of 70.2, the best in the league.

Purdy has completed 214 of his 305 throws for over 2,800 yards, 19 touchdowns and only six interceptions.

That is how many total interceptions the Eagles' defense has this year.

And yet Purdy has to overcome the stigma of being a "weak link," so to speak, and he spoke about playing with a chip on his shoulder from practice this week:

"That’s the first time I’ve heard that, so I don’t really know exactly how I feel about that. They could think that, that’s fine. Yeah, I don’t really know. I’m playing quarterback for the 49ers and we have a good team. I’m just trying to do my job to help them win."

The 49ers' star has the chance to dismantle a talented core of veterans in the Philadelphia secondary. The Eagles boast names of Darius Slay, James Bradberry, newly acquired Kevin Byard and second-year player Reed Blankenship.

With San Francisco's run game also a threat to enforce its will on Philly's defense, Purdy will help move the chains for the 49ers on Sunday. He has also rushed the ball in himself twice this year as well.

The Eagles defense has posted a minus-2 turnover differential compared to the Niners, who are tied for first at plus-11. During San Francisco's three-game losing streak from earlier this season, Purdy had thrown five picks and only three touchdowns.

He's thrown only one since in contrast to seven touchdowns.

Purdy has thrown multiple touchdowns in five contests this season including a four-score performance against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 5. He also threw for three more touchdowns in back-to-back games versus a pair of Florida teams in the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

If Purdy can manage the game by executing down the field, not turning the ball over and leading his receivers like Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel into the end zone, the Niners look to be in great shape to win this game.

Not only would a win on Sunday avenge last year's postseason exit, but it would close the gap in the NFC for the top seed overall.

Honorable Mention: 49ers kicker Jake Moody

Rookie kicker Jake Moody has been dependable for San Francisco this year, and he is responsible for 88 total points including his 17- of-20 for field goals.

Moody is posting an 85.0 field-goal percentage, and he is perfect in his extra-point attempts. His longest field goal on the year is from 57 yards out.

Related story: Fred Warner is key to 49ers stopping Eagles' tush push

His only three misses came during a pair of games within that three-game losing streak for the 49ers earlier in the season. Otherwise, Moody has proven to be the viable replacement for veteran kicker Robbie Gould.

If the game is close or on the line, Moody may be the X-factor to get the win for the 49ers over the Eagles this Sunday.

The two teams kick off on Dec. 3 at 4:25 p.m. ET from Lincoln Financial Field.

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