The Chip Kelly experiment continues as new starting quarterback Sam Bradford takes over one of the NFL’s best offenses. Kelly, of course, is well known for his offensive innovations and has helped the Philadelphia Eagles to back-to-back 10-plus win seasons. The Eagles get a chance to continue and get back to the postseason when they open Monday Night Football with a trip to the Georgia Dome to face the Atlanta Falcons. Bradford, who has missed the better part of the past two seasons with knee injuries, is finally healthy enough and is in command of the up-tempo Eagles offense. He is surrounded by a wealth of talent including last year’s NFL rushing leader RB DeMarco Murray. Jordan Matthews and rookie Nelson Agholor give Bradford youth but ample talent at the wide receiver positions. Eagles vs Falcons odds favor Philadelphia on the road by a field goal (-3) while NFL picks for week 1 on the over/under total are set at 55½.
The former Rams QB, Bradford was the 2010 Offensive Rookie of the Year after starting all 16 games. He then played in roughly half of the team’s next 64 games suffering knee injuries in consecutive seasons. The Eagles opponent, Atlanta, welcomes new head coach Dan Quinn, former defensive coordinator in Seattle. Quinn’s first task will be improving a defense that finished dead last in the league in total yards allowed per game (398.3). Quinn and the Falcons selected undersized hybrid LB/DE Vic Beasley of Clemson in the first round and acquired Adrian Clayborn in the offseason to help. Along with LB Justin Durant, the defense should improve at least enough to take some of the pressure off of the offense. If Atlanta is going to have any chance of covering the spread as home underdogs in Eagles vs Falcons odds, the defense must be able to slow down the potent Philly offense.
Quarterback Matt Ryan enjoyed his fourth straight 4,000-yard season last year, but he and the rest of the Falcons offense must work under new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan this season. There have been some struggles with the new zone-running based offense and problems with the offensive line have not helped. Atlanta has actually beaten Philadelphia the past two times that the two teams have met. Ryan threw for seven touchdowns in those two meetings. It is doubtful he will have that kind of success Monday night. Look for Philadelphia to have a lot of offensive success against a struggling Atlanta defense. The week 1 season opener (Monday, September 14th) between the Eagles and Falcons can be seen live on ESPN at 6:55pm EST from the Georgia Dome.
The Dallas Cowboys were the team to beat in the NFC East last season, primarily because of RB DeMarco Murray's league leading 1,845-yards (4.7 yards per carry). The Philadelphia Eagles finished second in the division primarily because of a successful home campaign resulting in a 6-2 record. The tables may have turned heading into the upcoming season as the Eagles made one of the biggest off-season acquisitions signing Murray in free agency and their schedule has eight home games at Lincoln Financial Field. Although Dallas will be without the talents of Murray, 2015 NFC East odds to win still have the Cowboys as slight +140 betting favorites followed by the Eagles at +160, the New York Giants at +300 and the Washington Redskins at +1400.
The Dallas Cowboys will now count on 3rd year pro Joseph Randle or Darren McFadden to handle the ball out of the backfield. That might be easier said than done however as Randle carried the ball 51-times for just 343-yards while McFadden had 155-attempts for 534-yards. It's not hard to tell that most of the Cowboys offense will need to rely on the chemistry between QB Tony Romo and WR Dez Bryant. Romo returns after throwing 3,705-yards last season to finish with a 113.2-rating while Bryant complained enough to force the Cowboys into a 5-year, $70 million extension last July. Romo will also have Terrance Williams in the slot and TE Jason Witten to help keep the offense rolling. That being said, the Dallas defense left much to be desired last season ranking in the bottom of the league in terms of efficiency and will need to get pressure on opposing quarterbacks this year if Dallas is to fulfill NFL predictions and win the division as favorites in 2015 NFC East odds.
As mentioned, the Philadelphia Eagles running back position has been filled after letting LeSean McCoy go to the Bills and signing RB Ryan Matthews (Chargers) during the off-season to help ease Murray's workload but who will play behind center? Well, that's another story. Sam Bradford is expected to get the start since being traded from the Rams but Mark Sanchez is also an available option and even, wait for it, Tim Tebow. The Eagles will have a formidable WR trio in Jordan Matthews, Josh Huff and Nelson Aghlor with TE's Brent Celek and Zach Ertz more than capable of handling short downs. The defensive unit however has somewhat been rebuilt with the acquisitions of former Seahawks defensive backs Ryan Maxwell and Walter Thurmond to provide knowledge and experience for rookie Eric Rowe (Utah).
After winning the Super Bowl in 2011, the New York Giants find themselves once again as longshots in 2015 NFC East odds to win. Big Blue went 6-10 last season which saw QB Eli Manning throw 4,410-yards for 30-touchdowns and 14-costly interceptions. WR's Odell Beckham Jr., a healthy Victor Cruz and Reuben Randle should be able to give Manning the targets needed to turn the Giants offense around. The "G-men" defense should also be a pleasant surprise even with DE Jason Pierre-Paul missing a finger or too with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (Broncos) and Prince Amukamara at the corners. As expected, the Washington Redskins are the longest shots on the board in 2015 NFC East odds to win. The only hope for Washington to defy losing predictions is if Robert Griffin III can finally live up to expectations while RB Alfred Morris has a season similar to 2012 where he rushed for 1,613-yards for 13-touchdowns.
Head coach Chip Kelly has won 20 games in two seasons but has yet to have any playoff success. Last year, in fact, the Philadelphia Eagles regular season total of 10 wins weren’t even enough to get them into the postseason. Now, the architect of one of the league’s best offenses moves into year three with a host of new faces on offense. In the offseason, the Eagles were busy trading away quarterback Nick Foles to St. Louis for the Rams QB Sam Bradford. Gone too is perennial All-Pro running back LeSean McCoy who rushed for nearly 6,800 yards in his six seasons in Philadelphia. Leading receiver Jeremy Maclin is now a Kansas City Chief.
But, all is not lost for Kelly and the NFL’s fifth-best offense in 2014. The Eagles signed NFL leading rusher DeMarco Murray from Dallas, picked up some insurance in RB Ryan Mathews, and grabbed veteran wide receiver Miles Austin. Don’t forget the Eagles also have the versatile Darren Sproles and drafted USC wide receiver Nelson Agholor in the first round of this year’s draft. Kelly should not have a problem working his up-tempo, run-first spread offense. Bookmakers in Vegas tend to agree cautiously listing the Philadelphia Eagles as 20/1 favorites in Super Bowl predictions, 11/1 to win the NFC Conference and +180 in NFL odds to win the NFC East division.
Because of the frenetic pace of the offense, the Philadelphia defense is asked to do a lot. The Eagles finished 28th in the NFL last season in total defense. Philadelphia attempted to address some of their problems when they traded McCoy to Buffalo for LB Kiko Alonso. Hopefully, Alonso will be healthy. He missed the entire 2014 season with a knee injury. The Eagles also added corners Byron Maxwell and Walter Thurmond. Linebacker Connor Barwin (14.5 sacks) and defensive end Vinny Curry (9.0 sacks) return to give the Eagles a pretty solid pass rush. For the Eagles to win the 2015 NFC East, it will be necessary as Philadelphia must improve its pass defense. They were 31st in the league last year giving up 264.9 yards per game, though some of that has to do with being on the field more than most defenses.
There is no question that the Eagles can win 10 games again. In fact, NFL odds for the total number of regular season wins list Philadelphia at 9½ UNDER (-130). However for that to happen the Eagles cannot falter down the stretch as they did last year losing to Seattle, Dallas, and Washington in three of the final four weeks of the season. Bradford, who has been hurt the past two seasons in St. Louis, has to stay healthy or Kelly may find his offense in the hands of Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley, or even Tim Tebow, who was signed in the offseason as a free agent.
Eagles Update (9/12/15): Philadelphia are now +900 favorites in Super Bowl predictions, +500 to win the NFC Conference and +EV to win the NFC East.
As the official beginning to the 2015 NFL season looms (Tuesday, March 10), there has already been plenty of action around the league. With the annual combine complete, teams are preparing for the upcoming NFL draft and figuring out what they will do with free agency this offseason. The latest NFL news includes Broncos QB Peyton Manning taking a pay cut to play in Denver, Vikings RB Adrian Peterson meeting with Minnesota management to discuss his future and the dynamic Eagles RB LeSean "Shady" McCoy being traded to the Buffalo Bills for Kiko Alonso.
The Denver QB and five-time NFL MVP, Peyton Manning, agreed to take a $4 million pay cut to help the Broncos free up some much needed salary cap room. The extra cash will allow Denver to be a little more active in the free agent market, which will start next Tuesday. Manning was scheduled to make $19 million during the 2015 season. He and the Broncos reworked his contract to give the future Hall of Famer a new base salary of $15 million. The contract still includes incentives that could push Manning’s total earnings to $19 million anyway. If Denver wins the AFC title game and then the Super Bowl, Manning would receive $2 million for each milestone. Current NFL betting odds to win Super Bowl 50 have the Broncos listed as 12/1 favorites.
Minnesota head coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman traveled to Houston to meet with Adrian Peterson about the possibility of returning to the Vikings for the 2015 season. Peterson is still a little wary about returning to Minnesota after missing 15 games last year. Peterson was suspended by the league for an incident in which he eventually pleaded no contest to in November. Peterson is set to make $12.75 million this season. The Vikings have a few options when it comes to Peterson. They can release him or trade him and they can also ask him to restructure his contract. With or without Peterson, Vegas has posted the Minnesota Vikings as a 65/1 longshot to win the NFL championship and 28/1 underdogs to win the NFC Conference.
The Philadelphia Eagles dealt LeSean McCoy, who finished third in the league in rushing last season, to the Buffalo Bills for linebacker Kiko Alonso. McCoy has rushed for 6,792 yards and 44 touchdowns since he was drafted by the Eagles in 2009. He is one of the league’s premier running backs. Alonso was the runner-up for the AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2013 but missed the entire 2014 season with a torn ACL that he suffered in training camp. The trade will become official upon the start of the 2015 season on March 10th. 2016 Super Bowl odds currently have the Eagles listed as 25/1 favorites while the Bills are posted as 50/1 longshots.
With Super Bowl XLIX in the books, it’s never too early to start looking ahead. Super Bowl 50 will take place on Feb. 7, 2016, at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California. Even after missing out on a chance for back-to-back championship titles, the Seattle Seahawks are still a heavy favorite to make it back and win the next Lombardi Trophy. 2016 Super Bowl odds list head coach Pete Carroll’s squad as 6/1 favorites to win it all. There are six franchises that will have new head coaches when the 2015 season begins. One of those, Jim Tomsula, will have the unique opportunity to become the first to lead his team to a championship game and play on the team’s home field since the 49ers play at Levi’s Stadium.
It will not be easy for San Francisco however listed as 40/1 longshots since coming off a very mediocre 8-8 season, will have a new coaching staff and a roster loaded with free agents. This offseason will have a big impact on what Tomsula and 49ers are able to do next year. Making it even more difficult for San Francisco is the fact that the NFC West Division is most likely the toughest in the NFL. The Arizona Cardinals finished the regular season 11-5 with a rotation of average quarterbacks. Head coach Bruce Arians was rewarded with NFL Coach of the Year honors and is already claiming that his team will be the NFC representative next year. That being said, bookmakers feel differently listing the Cardinals as 25/1 longshots in 2016 Super Bowl odds to hoist the Lombardi.
Add in an improving St. Louis Rams (33/1), who will get QB Sam Bradford back, and all the teams in the NFC West will have their work cut out for them to simply win the division. The Green Bay Packers (7/1) were an onside kick away from playing in Arizona this year and with league MVP Aaron Rodgers back behind center, 2016 could be the year of the cheese heads. In the AFC, the favorites are, of course, the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (17/2) and the Denver Broncos (12/1). Denver is one of those six teams with new head coaches.
Gary Kubiak, who served as an assistant with the Broncos in the past, takes over and will await whether or not quarterback Peyton Manning decides to retire. Other teams to watch in 2016 Super Bowl odds include the Dallas Cowboys at 10/1, Indianapolis Colts at 8/1, Philadelphia Eagles at 20/1 with the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers listed at 25/1.
This year’s Thanksgiving Day game in Dallas will feature two 8-3 teams battling for control of the NFC East. The Thursday match-up will be the first of two very important meetings of the two teams that will take place in the next three weeks. The winner will move into sole possession of first place and control their postseason destiny. The Philadelphia Eagles will travel down South to face the Dallas Cowboys at 4:30pm EST from AT&T Stadium. Eagles vs Cowboys betting predictions favor Dallas by a FG (-3) with an over/under total set at 54.5. Head coach Chip Kelly has one of the NFL’s best offenses averaging 407 yards a game, good enough for fifth-best in the league. The fact that the Eagles have been able to continue their offensive dominance is a testament to backup quarterback Mark Sanchez.
The much-maligned former Jets QB has now guided Philadelphia to three wins in his four appearances this season. Sanchez completed 30-of-43 passes for 307 yards and a TD in last week’s win over Tennessee. Dallas will also have to deal with running back LeSean McCoy who had 130 yards rushing in the Titans victory and is third in the league with 859 yards on the season. Philadelphia is no slouch on defense or special teams either. Josh Huff returned the opening kickoff 107 yards for a TD against Tennessee. It was the Eagles 10th non-offensive touchdown of the season, the most in the NFL. Despite last week's commanding win against the Titans last week and going 6-2 ATS in their last eight games, betting predictions for the Eagles vs Cowboys have Philly listed as 3-point underdogs since recently going just 2-4 against the point spread in their last six games when playing at AT&T Stadium.
The Dallas offense has been clicking as of late putting up 31 points each in their last two games, both victories. Tony Romo outplayed Eli Manning last Sunday night completing 18-of-26 passes for 275 yards and four touchdowns. The Cowboys also have the league’s leading rusher in DeMarco Murray. The former Oklahoma star ran 24 times for 121 yards in Sunday night’s win over the Giants. He now has 1,354 yards on the year. The two teams exchanged wins on the road last season with Philadelphia winning the last meeting at AT&T Stadium 24-22. Dallas has actually struggled at home this year winning just three of six against teams with a combined 12 wins among them. The Cowboys would like nothing more than a repeat of last year’s Thanksgiving Day victory. Vegas is reporting that 55% of the betting action on Eagles vs Cowboys odds is predicting Dallas will cover the field goal point spread however head Coach Jason Garrett's squad has gone just 3-7 ATS in their last ten games at home.
Anyone thinking that Philadelphia will falter now that starting QB Nick Foles is out with a broken collarbone may be dead wrong. The oft-maligned Mark Sanchez stepped in for Foles and has come through with two wonderful performances, both Eagles victories, against Houston and Carolina. Philadelphia and Sanchez will face a stiff test in week 11 to continue their winning streak when they travel for an NFC conference battle with Green Bay. The game will kick-off from Lambeau Field at 4:25pm EST and can be seen live on FOX. Betting predictions for Eagles vs Packers odds currently have Green Bay listed as nearly touchdown (-6) favorites at home while the over/under total has been posted at a high scoring 55. Gamblers looking to take the money-line would need to risk -260 on a straight up win by Green Bay while a road upset by Philadelphia would pay-out +220 on a $100 wager.
Sanchez was terrific in last week’s 45-21 win over the Panthers. The former USC QB connected on 20-of-37 passes and threw two touchdown passes. The up-tempo Eagles offense didn’t seem to miss a beat as they rolled to a 45-7 lead early in the fourth quarter. Philadelphia will face a better pass defense in Green Bay, which has won five of its last six games. The Packers yield just 229 passing yards per game, good enough for ninth in the league. The Green Bay offense is another story. Packers QB Aaron Rodgers went out and threw six touchdown passes last week in a 55-14 over NFC North rival Chicago. Rodgers carved up the Bears secondary as he completed 18-of-27 passes for 315 yards. He did not throw an interception and was not sacked. The Packers will also have the luxury of playing at home. With a winter storm expected to hit the area mid-week, the frozen tundra should be nice and frozen on Sunday afternoon.
Green Bay is unbeaten at home this season and both of the Eagles losses have come on the road. The two teams met last November with Philadelphia getting the best of the Packers in a 27-13 win. Green Bay needs a win to keep pace with NFC South leader Detroit (7-2). There is the Nov. 30 game with New England on the horizon as well as the season-ending tussle with the Lions on Dec. 28. The Eagles would like to keep their hold on the NFC East. They face the task of playing second-place Dallas two times in three week near the end of the season. Although Vegas is reporting that 66% of the betting action is on Green Bay laying the points, the recent trends would have Lee Corso saying "not so fast my friend." The Packers have gone just 3-5-2 against the point spread when playing at home and 1-4 ATS in their last five match-ups against the Eagles while Philadelphia has gone a profitable 7-3 ATS in their last ten road games.
The Panthers haven't won in almost a month and yet, at 3-5-1, are still in contention to win the NFC South. Carolina enjoys a few extra days off after last Thursday's 28-10 loss to New Orleans. Those days are much needed as the Panthers prepare for one of the league's best in Philadelphia. The week 10 NFC conference battle will take place on Monday night football from Lincoln Financial Field with kick-off scheduled for 8:30pm EST and can be seen live on ESPN. Carolina Panthers vs Philadelphia Eagles betting in Vegas has 61% of the gambling action on Philly giving 7-points as home favorites while the over/under wagering total is set at 48. Those looking to play the money line would need to risk -290 on the Eagles for a straight up win while a Panthers upset would return +240 on a $100 bet. The Eagles are a half-game ahead of Dallas in the NFC East and are unbeaten (4-0) at home this season. Philadelphia features one of the NFL's best offenses but will have to deal with a change at QB after an injury to starter Nick Foles.
Mark Sanchez, a former starter for the New York Jets, will take over under center. Head coach Chip Kelly will alter the offense to fit what Sanchez does best. That may mean throwing the ball downfield more often. Philadelphia still has the NFL's fourth-leading rusher in LeSean McCoy and all-purpose back Darren Sproles. The Eagles will be playing against a Panthers defense that is surprisingly not very good. They are near the bottom of the league in rushing defense, something they excelled at a year ago. If Philadelphia has success running the football, it will take some of the pressure off of Sanchez who was an admirable 15-of-22 for 202 yards and two touchdowns after replacing Foles last week but also threw two interceptions. Recent Philadelphia Eagles betting trends heading into week 10 have head Coach Chip Kelly's squad going 4-1 ATS in their last five games and 5-2 against the point spread in their last seven home games.
Carolina played Seattle tough before bowing 13-9 to the Seahawks on Oct. 26. Head Coach Ron Rivera’s squad is in a must-win situation. A loss will put them a full two games behind New Orleans in the division. The two teams meet again on Dec. 7 and the Panthers cannot afford to fall farther behind the Saints, who are on a two-game winning streak. The Panthers running game is almost non-existent averaging just under 95 yards a game and QB Cam Newton is just not having the type of year that was expected of the fourth-year player. He is completing just 57.4 percent of his passes and has rushed for just 257 yards in the eight games he has played. Newton will have to do much more if Carolina is to be successful in Philadelphia under the bright lights of Monday night football. Carolina Panthers betting trends have the team recently going 2-5 ATS in their last seven games and 2-4 against the spread in their last six meetings with Philly.
The Giants are one of the hottest teams in the NFL right now and head to Philadelphia to take on their NFC East rivals, the Eagles. Eli Manning and the Giants offense have erupted for 105 in the past three games, all victories. While the Giants seem to be coming around after a 0-2 start, the Eagles have dominated their division rivals defeating them in nine of the last 12 meetings. Giants at Eagles odds for Sunday night football favor Philadelphia by a field-goal (-3) at home while the NFL football betting over/under total has been posted at a high-scoring 50.5. Gamblers looking to play the money line would need to risk -140 on the Eagles for the straight up win while an upset by New York would return +120.
After trailing 20-10 in the third quarter last Sunday, the Giants scored the game’s final 20 points for a 30-20 win over Atlanta. Rookie receiver Odell Beckham Jr. debuted with a fourth quarter 15-yard TD reception from Manning which gave New York the lead that it would never relinquish. Philadelphia is well-known for its explosive offense under second-year head coach Chip Kelly; however, in the Eagles’ past two outings the defense and special teams have accounted for five touchdowns. The Philadelphia running game, though, is underachieving. After leading the league last year, the Eagles are averaging just 99 yards per game. Thankfully, QB Nick Foles has picked up the offensive slack and has thrown for 1,380 yards and eight touchdowns. Foles will have to be sharp against a Giants defense that plays well against the run, but not so well against the pass.
If LeSean McCoy is able to have a breakout game, the Eagles could easily walk away with their 10th win in the last 14 in the series. McCoy led the league in rushing a year ago but has just 273 yards so far this season. What’s worse is that he is averaging just 2.9 yards per carry and has scored just one touchdown. The Giants will rely heavily on the Manning to Victor Cruz connection and a strong run defense. With three wins in a row and a nationally televised audience on Sunday night, the Giants could help themselves in the hunt for the NFC East with a win. Big Blue has been a profitable team to wager on as of late going 5-2 both SU and ATS in their last seven games and 5-2 against the spread when playing on the road. Philadelphia has gone 4-1 SU and ATS in their last five games while going 4-2 against the spread when playing at home.
Head coach Jim Harbaugh and the San Francisco 49ers have been to each of the last three NFC Championships games. To make it to a fourth, Harbaugh and company will need to break out of their early season funk and win some football games. At 1-2, the 49ers entertain the Philadelphia Eagles in week 4, one of just three unbeaten teams left in the league. The Eagles have become the first team in NFL history to win their first three games of a season after trailing by at least 10 points. That being said, NFL betting predictions favor San Francisco at home by 4.5-points against Philadelphia while Eagles at 49ers odds for the total have been listed at a high scoring 51. Sunday's NFC conference battle can be seen live from Levi's Stadium on FOX at 4:25pm EST.
Eagles head coach Chip Kelly has the offense near the top of the all the major statistical categories including passing yards, total yards, and scoring. The one statistic that matters most, though, is wins. Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles leads the NFL with 978 yards passing. The third-year player out of Arizona has also thrown six touchdown passes. Ironically, Foles is one of three current NFL starters to have played college football at Michigan State. Kirk Cousins took over for Robert Griffin III in Washington and Brian Hoyer is the starter in Cleveland. Foles spent his freshman season in East Lansing before transferring to Arizona. Foles took over as the starter in Philadelphia last year for Michael Vick. The move has paid great dividends for the Eagles, who made the playoffs after a 10-6 season last year. Foles would finish the season with 27 touchdown passes and just two interceptions. He is on pace to have another great year.
San Francisco needs to get their season back on track. After a convincing win over Dallas in week one, the 49ers let one slip away in Chicago in week two. Last week, the Niners led 14-6 at the half and then let backup QB Drew Stanton throw two TD passes in a 23-14 loss. For San Francisco to get back on track, they will have to get back to doing what they do best – play great defense and run the football. The 49ers ran the ball just 18 times last week. Frank Gore, the team’s leading rusher, has just 139 yards so far this season. That must change if the Niners are to have any chance at winning a very competitive NFC West Division. While NFL betting predictions favor San Francisco at home, gamblers would be wise to note the squad is just 2-3-1 ATS in their last six games and 1-4 against the spread when playing at home. Philadelphia however, has gone an impressive 5-2 ATS and 6-1 SU when playing on the road with a 5-1 SU record overall.