Philadelphia Eagles vs. Green Bay Packers
Date and Time: Thursday, August 10, 2017, 8 p.m. ET
Location: Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI
Preseason NFL Week 1 Opening Odds: Packers -2, O/U 39.5
Eagles vs. Packers TV Coverage: Local
The start of the preseason really means nothing to the Packers. Aaron Rodgers didn't even suit last year in the first week of the preseason, and we have a hunch he isn't going to see the field in this game either. At most, it'll be a drive for Rodgers before he takes a seat and finds a ball cap.
Brett Hundley could start this game, and even if he doesn't, he'll probably get the majority of the time. Hundley only played in one preseason game himself last year, going 5-for-7 for 67 yards in the team's second exhibition against Oakland.
Joe Callahan had a relatively good preseason last year for the Pack, including going 16-of-23 for 124 yards and a touchdown in the first preseason game against Cleveland. All told, Callahan threw 88 passes without an interception in his first ever preseason. If he can replicate that in this game, the Packers are going to ultimately have a good shot to win and cover.
It's going to be an interesting preseason for the Eagles. Clearly, this is Carson Wentz's team for the next decade. He's earned that right after a good rookie season, and it'll be interesting to see how much he'll be counted upon in the preseason.
Nick Foles is back in Philadelphia after playing a couple years in Kansas City. Toss in the fact that Matt McGloin has come over from Oakland and rookie Dane Evans, and you've got three quarterbacks who are brand new to Doug Pederson's offense.
More important might be the running back committee. Ryan Mathews is rehabbing and likely will end up being a salary cap casualty. Darren Sproles and Donnel Pumphrey are both going to get time for sure, while Wendell Smallwood will have a role as well. LeGarrette Blount is new to the City of Brotherly Love and will be the power back, the same role that Corey Clement is hoping to play as an undrafted rookie out of Wisconsin.
9.5 – The number of points per game the Eagles averaged allowing last year in the preseason.
It was an interesting switch for Philadelphia from the Chip Kelly days. The Eagles took their time offensively and played a lot more aggressive defense than most would have figured for a coach who was a career backup quarterback.
Remember that this game is likely to end up being played at a snail's pace, knowing that the Packers averaged running the ball 36.5 times per game last preseason, three times more than any other team in the league.
Eagles vs. Packers Free Picks
The bottom line in this game is that the total is just flat out too high at 39.5. Sure, preseason totals have been rising at the top online sportsbooks as the years have gone on, but this is ridiculous. These two teams are going to run the ball on at least 60, if not 70 percent of their plays in this game, and there isn't going to be any sense of tossing deep balls.
The average Eagles game featured just 29.8 points per game last preseason, while the average Packers game averaged 28.8 points per game. The justification for this total being so high flat out isn't there, and we're set to take advantage of it. Even if both teams lose 10 percent of their defensive firepower from last year, we'll be fine.
Eagles vs. Packers ATS Pick: Under 39.5 at BookMaker.eu
Eagles vs. Packers Score Prediction: Packers 20, Eagles 13