They knew early. They knew just a few plays after kickoff they’d be able to dominate.

On the Giants’ fourth snap of the game Sunday night, Connor Barwin sacked Eli Manning, forcing a fumble. The Giants recovered the ball, but they never recovered.

“We knew after that first sack,” Fletcher Cox said. “They got the ball back, but that set the tone. We just felt like it was going to be our night.”

The Eagles’ front seven never let up, sacking the two-time Super Bowl MVP six times (they also sacked Ryan Nassib twice), limiting him to 13 completions, stuffing the run and making big play after big play on the way to a 27-0 annihilation of the Giants at the Linc.

It was the Eagles’ first shutout in 18 years, their most lopsided win over the Giants in 34 years and as overwhelming a performance from the Eagles’ defensive front as we’ve seen in a generation.

And they knew just a few snaps in.

“Yeah, I felt it early,” DeMeco Ryans said. “That was our goal. I knew if we got after Eli early I knew we could really control the game. So that was our goal, and we started to hit him early, so I knew we had him.”

The Eagles opened the season 4-1, in large part, despite the defense. The Eagles went into their nationally televised NFC East showdown with the Giants Sunday night ranked 28th in the NFL in defense and 25th in scoring defense.

They had allowed 26 or more points four straight weeks for only the fifth time in franchise history.