They’re for real: Eagles erase all doubt with win at Panthers

Updated: October 12, 2017

1:04 AM ET

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Eagles defensive tackle Fletcher Cox returned after missing the previous two games with a calf injury and made his presence felt. He bulldozed through guard Trai Turner to hit Panthers QB Cam Newton midthrow and force a first-half interception that led to six points. Cox finished with two quarterback hits and a half-sack.

Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz and his players had their hands full with the Panthers’ multifaceted attack featuring Newton, rookie running back Christian McCaffrey and a pair of imposing receivers in Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess. The key was generating three takeaways, all Newton interceptions.

The Eagles were playing with house money, in a sense. Well-positioned in an adversity-struck NFC East, a loss in Carolina wouldn’t have been viewed as a crusher. In pulling out a victory, the chip pile grows, as do expectations for what this team can do in Year 2 of the coach Doug Pederson and Wentz era.

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