NFL season kicks off in Philadelphia


FILE – In this Jan. 13, 2018, file photo, Atlanta Falcons’ Matt Ryan and Philadelphia Eagles’ Nigel Bradham react after Atlanta cannot score on fourth and goal during the second half of an NFL divisional playoff football game, in Philadelphia. The Eagles have a tough opponent Thursday night in the NFL opener. The Atlanta Falcons […]

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – The NFL season kicks off Thursday night when the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles host the Atlanta Falcons.

Before the Eagles begin their quest for a repeat, they’ll have one more celebration. The first Super Bowl banner in franchise history will be unveiled in front of a sellout crowd that waited seemingly forever to witness the moment.

Coach Doug Pederson and his veteran players have preached throughout the offseason the importance of moving forward and focusing on the present if the Eagles are going to have any chance of becoming the ninth team to repeat as Super Bowl champs.

Nick Foles will again be under center, as Carson Wentz still hasn’t been medically cleared following surgery last December to repair two torn knee ligaments.

The Eagles have a tough opponent in Atlanta. The Falcons were 2 yards away from knocking the Eagles out of the playoffs in the divisional round, but Matt Ryan’s pass to Julio Jones fell incomplete in the right corner of the end zone.

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