The 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles arguably are the two best teams in the NFL.
San Francisco and Philadelphia are decorated with All-Pros who are led by two of the best coaches. Both teams once again have strong regular-season records and after facing off in the 2023 NFC Championship Game.
NBC Sports Bay Area’s Donte Whitner and NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Barret Brooks share a similar sentiment. The two former players discussed the matchup on the “Players Only” segment that airs Sunday on “49ers Pregame Live,” and detailed their high expectations for the Week 13 showdown at Lincoln Financial Field.
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“Is this an overreach? Sunday's winner will be the NFC champion,” Brooks told Whitner.
“I think that that's too short of a goal right there, Barret,” replied Whitner. “I think that these are clearly the best two teams in the NFL. And when you think about Baltimore [Ravens], yeah, you could throw them in there. I would even go further to say the winner of this game with the momentum, the psychological advantage– I think that [the 49ers-Eagles winner] will eventually be the NFL champions.”
The Eagles own an NFL-best 10-1 record, earning huge wins over probable playoff teams such as the Kansas City Chiefs (8-3), Dallas Cowboys (9-3) and Miami Dolphins (8-3).
At 8-3, San Francisco also has key wins, defeating the Cowboys, Jacksonville Jaguars (8-3) and Pittsburgh Steelers (7-4).
San Francisco 49ers
“I'm thinking the same thing,” Barret told Whitner. “This is the No. 1 and No. 2 team in the NFL, bar none. Towards talent level, coaching, understanding of where you rank not just in the conference, with ranking overall in the NFL. I think this is the first year that the NFC has really put their teams to the point where they are the most dominant conference in the NFL, period. And there's no room for debate right now."
As mentioned, the 49ers and Eagles met in the 2023 NFC title game, where Philadelphia won 31-7 over an injury-riddled San Francisco, advancing to the Super Bowl.
So far, it seems as if the two teams are bound to meet in the playoffs again, potentially living up to Whitner and Brooks’ prediction that sees either the 49ers or Eagles hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy in February.
Sunday’s matinee should be a thriller, as many will make similar bold predictions as Whitner and Brooks based on the intense, hostile rematch of last year’s NFC title game.