It’s Friday again. Time for the picks. We’ve come in at 2-1 each of the past 2 weeks, so let’s try to keep the winning streak alive (for amusement purposes only, in case you didn’t know).The Eagles travel down to DC to play the most ‘must winningiest’ game in the history of the franchise. Ok, maybe not. But it sure does feel like it.
The NFL card is tough this week, no question. As of this writing, 9 of the 13 games on the schedule have a line of seven points or higher. Some teams are coming off of bye weeks, how will that impact their performance? Some teams are desperately in need of a win, will the extra motivation help?
I looked over the card and really couldn’t pinpoint any games that I like. I was leaning to Detroit -4 over San Fran, but coming off a huge Monday Night win there could be a letdown for the Lions. I was leaning to the Patriots -7 over Dallas, but New England’s pass defense is terrible and Dallas DC (and future Eagles coach?) Rob Ryan knows how to beat the Pats, he did it with Cleveland as DC last season. I didn’t want to force anything just to make a play. But I did see some value in the Eagles game, so read on and find out who I like…
Bet #1: (a.k.a The “We can’t lose to the Skins, can we?” pick) Eagles -1′ over Redskins
I’m not buying the Redskins. I know, I know, I say that every week about whoever the Eagles are playing, and they always end up beating us. Ok, fair enough. But this time I mean it. Yes, Washington is 3-1. And I’m well aware that the Eagles are 1-4. But I still think the Eagles are the better team. Mike Vick vs. Rex Grossman? Shady McCoy v. Tim Hightower? Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson vs. Santana Moss and Fred Davis? C’mon man (trademark ESPN). You know who agrees with me? J-Bo…
The road team is 7-1-1 ATS in the last nine games in this series. The road team won and covered both games last season. McNabb won in Week 4 in his return to the Linc (the peak of his Redskins career), and in Week 10 the Eagles ventured down I-95 and massacred the Redskins, 59-28 on Monday Night. Remember that one? You don’t? Well here’s a reminder…
Despite the 4 straight losses the Eagles continue to get it done on offense, they have outgained their opponent in all five games this season. It’s the turnovers and lack of defense that are killing us. I don’t know if the defense will show up or not, but I would think that we won’t see four INT’s from Vick this week like we saw in Buffalo. I mean the breaks have to go our way at some point, right?
Are we jinxed? Are the sports gods are upset about the ‘dream team’ remark from Vince Young (sure it was a joke, but no one LOL’d)? I hope we’ve done our penance and we can get back to winning games again.
Washington will keep the ball on the ground to take advantage of the Eagles Swiss cheese rush defense (#31 rush defense efficiency). So expect a healthy dose of Tim Hightower. I expect the Eagles to keep it in the air, Washington has a pretty good rush defense (#5 rush defense efficiency), so expect to see Maclin and Jackson alot (no fumble jokes, please).
Use whatever phrase you want… “must win”, “season on the brink”, “backs up against the wall”, “jobs on the line”, I think the Eagles come out to play this week and they get the W (and the cover) in FedEx Field. Accoring to Les Bowen, Asante said the Eagles are “going to come out there swinging, fighting, and do our damn thizzle.” I like his moxie.
Oh, and they had a players-only meeting on Thursday, so that’s gotta count for something, right?
I think the Eagles will do their damn thizzle. I’ll say Eagles 27 Redskins 17.
Useless trivia (impress your friends): The Eagles are only the 2nd team since 1993 to be 1-4 and not be an underdog vs. a home team with a better record. (did you get all that?)
The Line: Eagles -1.5, O/U 47
The Pick: Eagles -1.5
Oh, and since we’re talking Eagles / Redskins, let’s not forget ‘The Body Bag Game’…
What I listened to while writing this post: The Doors – Live in Philadelphia. I had this show on cassette in the 80’s, only back then it was called ‘Absolutely Live’. It’s a great show from the Spectrum in 1970. Great Doors setlist with a few additions to the Absolutely Live tracks (Roadhouse Blues, Ship of Fools, Light My Fire, Maggie M’Gill and a great Soul Kitchen to close it out). Vince Treanor, The Doors’ road manager, is on the first track telling the crowd to clear the aisles, and reminding them about fire code regulations (like they cared). “Come on everybody, go back to your seats. People are gonna get hurt up here, they’re gonna pass out, and we don’t want it, man, and The Doors don’t want it either.” Good stuff.
Then the band takes the stage and Jim yells, “Hey, Philadelphia? Do you feel alright?”
Good Luck and Go Birds!!
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