Archives for posts with tag: philadelphia eagles

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Cincinnati Bengals (7-6, 6-6-1 ATS) vs Philadelphia Eagles (4-9, 3-9-1 ATS) @ Lincoln Financial Field, 8.20 PM

Line: CIN by 5

Total: 45

This is one of the toughest Thursday night spreads of the season. The Bengals were winners of four straight before losing to the Cowboys at home 20-19, blowing a 9 point lead. How will the Bengals respond in a must win game on a short week. Even if Cinncy pulls this one out tonight, they still have play Pittsburgh and Baltimore, beating both to make the wild card.

Then there’s the Eagles, who I expected to roll over last week in Tampa, instead down 21-10, Nick Foles leads two touchdown drives with four minutes left, lifting Philly to a 23-21 win. With Vick, McCoy, and Jackson all missing again this week, Foles and Bryce Brown led Eagles have covered the spread the last two weeks against the Bucs and Cowboys. The Eagles are also doing a better job protecting Foles when he drops back in the pocket, but they’ll be tested against Geno Atkins & Carlos Dunlap and the seemingly endless line depth the Bengals have.

Bengals WR A.J. Green (who was featured in yesterday’s post) should be targeted early in tonight’s game, when he lines up against a battered Nnamdi Asomugha. Cincinnati will probably trying some big plays in their first series to suck the life out of the Philly faithful (cause 4-9 team and showing up on Thursday is as faithful as it gets) and lower the confidence of a young Eagles squad.

If those big plays do not workout for the Bengals, the Eagles will stick around much like they did the last two weeks. On a short week you cannot trust a Marv Lewis coached team to show up, even if the guy on the other sideline is packing up his office after the game, I wouldn’t count out the “new/young” Eagles as the home underdog on a short week.

Take Philly +5 and the under.

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Philadelphia Eagles

Top Name: Jon Gruden

Any team that gets Jon Gruden out of the Monday Night Football booth will be getting a thank you basket from yours truly. Gruden has ties to the Eagles from his days as an offensive coordinator in the 90’s. Gruden would bring along his brother, Jay, who’s done a terrific job in two years in Cincinnati. Jay’s done a great job developing Andy Dalton into a top up and comer at the quarterback position. Jon’s “Chucky” demeanor would be a complete 180 from Andy Reid, who’s the proud owner of one lone facial expression. This type of hiring would avoid the McNabb-draft reaction that Philly fans take so much pride in.

Surprise Hire that Totally Wouldn’t be a Surprise: Chip Kelly

While it may finally be time to see if Chip Kelly has what it takes to hack it in the pro’s, Philly would provide an ownership that doesn’t meddle in football affairs, 20+ million in cap space (could be even more if they cut Vick), and an offense with tons of weapons with top end speed to run Kelly’s famous up-tempo spread offense. There are few teams that could provide Kelly the weapons and resources right away to give him the complete control over the roster that college coaches crave.

Surprise Hire That Totally Would Be a Surprise: Marty Mornhinweg

Couple of years ago or something like that ESPN wrote an article that based on a few elements, they predicted that Marty Mornhinweg could be a success if ever given a second chance at being the head guy. Of course, a lot can happen in a few years, reputations come and go, QB’s that can’t stay healthy and lineman that can’t protect, can turn geniuses into fools real quick. Philadelphia has been a loyal organization to most of their coaching staff and maybe giving a guy in-house a chance maybe the best solution. If the offense continues to perform with Nick Foles as their QB, their good be some internal push for Marty, as to not to rock the boat too much.

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San Diego Chargers

Top Name: Andy Reid

While I don’t think anyone would blame Andy for taking a year off and be with his family for a while, if Reid decides to get back on the saddle (one very large saddle) what better place then the beaches of sunny San Diego. Teaming Phillip Rivers and Reid would be an offensive dream, after you think about what Reid has done with McNabb, Jeff Garcia, A.J. Feeley, Ty Dytmer, Kevin Kolb, the sky’s the limit. One thing that could keep Reid away would be the fact you’d have to play Peyton Manning and the Broncos twice a year, and that’s no easy task.

Surprise Hire That Totally Wouldn’t Be A Surprise: Ken Whisenhunt

Before the last two seasons, Whisenhunt was an offensive wizard that led the lonely Cardinals to their first Super Bowl apperance. After two years of terrible decisions at the quarterback position, in a quarterback driven league, could cost Kenny this job in the desert. Antonio Gates would love this move, as Whisenhunt is a former tight end, that stress the position in his offense. With Rivers having a large say in picking the next head coach, with all off Whisenhunt’s recent success in Pittsburgh and Arizona and his buddy Gates wanting to continue being a focal point, this seems kind of logical.

Surprise Hire That Totally Would Be a Surprise: Marty Schottenheimer

This is a complete long shot, but after firing him after a 14-2 season, Chargers owner Dean Spanos has to think what might have been if he didn’t side with GM A.J. Smith all those years ago. With the uncertainty of the Chargers franchise (whether they get a new stadium in SD or move to L.A.) a stop-gap coach maybe a solution and if you’re gonna go stop-gap theres no one better than Marty.

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Dallas Cowboys

Top Name: Mike Holmgren

After a quick tenure in Cleveland that stopped his retirement train in its tracks, the ‘ole walrus maybe set to return to the sideline for one last kick at the can. Whether you want to call Holmgren’s time with the Browns too short to judge or a quick failure, his ego maybe bruised enough at the moment that he’d accept Jerry Jones as a boss and general manager. Holmgren is a good friend of Bill Parrcells, so I’m sure he’ll do his homework on the whether it’s a manageable situation or not. NFC East would easily have the oldest three coaches combined (Shannahan, Holmgren, Coughlin) at the combined age of 300, could be great competition for a few years, with play-sheets with print the size of newspaper headlines.

Surprise Hire That Totally Wouldn’t Be A Surprise: Andy Reid

While Reid certainly does not seem like the vengeful type, this would be and epic kick-in the ass to a rather lame Eagles-Cowboys rivalry. Oh how Philly would be so mixed with emotions on which Andy Reid Dallas would be getting. Reid would have all the pieces in place on offense and the Cowboys defense that’s better off then the Eagles now. Reid also lacks the ego the go toe to toe with Jerry Jones, that could also be a huge benefit to have someone with Andy’s calm demeanor taking some of the blows for the hot headed owner.

Surprise Hire That Totally Would Be a Surprise: Chip Kelly

Jerry feeling like he needs to go back to some of the old college magic that Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer brought in the early 90’s,  Jones could make Kelly a godfather offer that Kelly can’t refuse. If this actually happened you can bet this move would be all about the mula for Kelly. Anyone and everyone will tell him he’s making a mistake going from the king of the hill in Eugene to Poppet boy in Dallas. Jerry Jones is a businessman above all else and certainly has the means and gumption to get Kelly on the sidelines for Sundays.

Baltimore Ravens (9-3, 5-6-1 ATS) vs Washington Redskins (6-6, 7-5-1 ATS) @ FedEx Field, 1 PM

Line: WSH by 2.5

Total: 47.5

Nobody can really understand the 2012 Baltimore Ravens. Losing to a Charlie Batch led Pittsburgh Steelers is unacceptable. In the last three season the Ravens record is 35-13, but 23-22 ATS. If there has ever been an indicator of how a team can be good yet so unpredictable, this is it. Take away the Houston loss (43-13) and wins versus Oakland (55-20) and Cincinnati (44-13) the rest of Baltimore’s games have been decided by 5 points or less.

Part of why the Ravens are so unpredictable is because of their enigma of a QB Joe Flacco. Flacco started the season pounding his chest for a contract extension that would make him one of the highest paid players in the league. His performance this season has been nowhere near elite, Flacco’s completion percentage is Vick-esque at 59.2% and after throwing multiple touchdowns in three of his first four games, he’s only had one multi touchdown game since, that came against a dreadful Oakland defense.

Expect Torrey Smith to have a big afternoon, Washington’s pass defense as mentioned here before is one of the worst in the league, Smith should be able to make life miserable for former teammate Josh Wilson, who will have the task of covering the Maryland product.

Even with all the injures to the Ravens, I’m very surprised to see the line favoring the Redskins. Even though this is technically a road game for the Ravens, FedEx Field is in the state of Maryland and is as much of a home game for the Ravens as it is for Washington. I’d take my chances on the 9-3 Ravens as an underdog in basically a home game.

Philadelphia Eagles (3-9, 2-9-1 ATS) vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-6, 8-3-1 ATS) @ Raymond James Stadium, 1 PM

Line: TB by 7

Total: 48

Tampa has been taking care of business against bad teams this year. While Tampa is on a two game losing streak, they lost to two Super Bowl contenders in Atlanta and Denver, only losing by a combined 8 points. The Bucs are really starting to develop a real rhythm on offense, with an opposing defense having to respect the run and pass, making a lethal play action attack.

The Bucs defense has been playing better of late too, not allowing a 100 yard rusher in the last three weeks. With DeSean Jackson missing for the Eagles, I can’t see a repeat of Bryce Brown’s 169 yard performance versus the Cowboys.

You have to question how focused Philly is. They fired the defensive line coach, put their best pass rushers on the street and more reports that more players will be looking for new address for next September. The Bucs are a team on the rise and have consistently cover the spread, Take Tampa and the 7 points and don’t look back.