The Philadelphia Eagles were the best team in the NFC all season and they earned that No. 1 seed. But the loss of likely MVP Carson Wentz cast a dark cloud over the organization. The Eagles won two of their final three games with Wentz sidelined, and the defeat came in the regular season finale when most of the regulars didn’t play or saw little action.
Still, oddsmakers weren’t moved by the way Nick Foles played in place of Wentz and the Eagles made history by becoming the first No. 1 seed to be an underdog in its first playoff game. The Eagles are more than just a quarterback, however. Behind the running of LeGarrette Blount and Jay Ajayi, they had the third-best ground game in the NFL with an average of over 132 yards per game. And because Wentz was so efficient and the offense scored nearly 29 points per game, the defense was often overlooked. Six times during the regular season they held an opponent to 10 points or less and they ranked first in run defense allowing fewer than 80 yards per outing.
But the Eagles will have to score some points against a stiff Falcons defense that held the high-scoring Rams to 13 points in the Wild Card Round if they want to advance, and that falls on Foles. He did his best Wentz impersonation in his first start throwing four touchdown passes, but the numbers tailed off after that. It’s not like Foles is an inexperienced backup. He’s made 39 regular season starts during his six-year career with 22 wins and has twice as many touchdown passes as interceptions. And unlike Jared Goff, who the Falcons frustrated last week, Foles has playoff experience.
2017 Record: 13-3
2017 ATS Record: 10-6
2017 Over/Under Total Record: 8-8
Current Super Bowl Odds: +1165
Current Odds to Win NFC: +431
Current Odds to Win NFC East: N/A
Current NFL Odds: Eagles +3
Over/Under Total: 41
Eagles vs. Falcons NFL Preview: The Philadelphia Eagles are the top seed in the NFC, but they are home underdogs on Saturday afternoon against the Atlanta Falcons in an NFC Divisional Playoff game that can be seen on NBC. The Eagles would have been solid home favorites with Carson Wentz at quarterback, but with Nick Foles under center the Eagles are underdogs. The Falcons are coming off a road win last week against the Rams, while the Eagles had a bye. Let’s look at the game and NFLpicks. Continue
Wild Card Round: BYE
Week 17: Cowboys 6, Eagles 0
ATS Result: Cowboys -3.5
Over/Under Total Result: Under 41
The Eagles sat a number of starters in this game with the top-seed already secured and it showed. Nate Sudfeld completed 19 of 23 passes for 134 yards in relief of Foles, but the Eagles failed to score while easily cashing the under and failing to cover the spread for a third straight game. The defense was sharp, but the Boys converted a 99-yard drive into the games only points early in the fourth quarter.
Week 16: Eagles 19, Raiders 10
ATS Result: Raiders +10
Over/Under Total Result: Under 46
Ronald Darby’s interception in the final minute set the stage for Jake Elliott’s game-winning 48-yard field goal and Philly clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC. The Eagles struggled in their second game without Wentz, leading to some anxious moments, but the defense came up with five takeaways to keep the score below the total. A fumble return for a touchdown on the final kick brought the Eagles close to the line, but they opted to take a knee on the PAT, failing to cover the 10-point spread.
Week 15: Eagles 34, Giants 29
ATS Result: Giants +7.5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 40.5
That the Eagles were able to win despite giving up over 500 yards shows just how good they can be. They weren’t at their best and failed to cover the 7.5-point spread, but in his first start Nick Foles tossed four touchdown passes and Philly overcame an early 20-7 deficit. The teams combined for 44 first-half points, cashing the over before halftime.
Week 14: Eagles 43, Rams 35
ATS Result: Eagles +1
Over/Under Total Result: Over 47.5
Philly’s division-clinching win was overshadowed by the loss of Wentz to a knee injury. Wentz’s last play was a touchdown pass to Alshon Jeffery that gave the Eagles a 31-28 lead late in the third. After the Rams scored to retake the lead, Foles directed a couple of field goal drives with the winner coming after a strip-sack by Chris Long for the outright win. The highest scoring teams in the league didn’t disappoint, easily cashing the over.
Week 13: Seahawks 24, Eagles 10
ATS Result: Seahawks +3.5
Over/Under Total Result: Under 46.5
It was a struggle for the highest scoring offense in a hostile environment, but things could’ve been different if not for a costly fumble by Wentz at the Seattle goal line. Down 10-3, Wentz was stripped just before breaking the plane and the ball rolled out of the end zone for a touchback. Seattle went 80 yards on the ensuing possession for a 17-3 lead that salted the game. Philly failed to reach the 20-point mark for the first time this year, which allowed under bettors to collect.
Week 12: Eagles 31, Bears 3
ATS Result: Eagles -14
Over/Under Total Result: Under 43.5
Wentz threw three touchdown passes and the defense held the Bears out of the end zone to easily cover the two touchdown spread. Wentz tossed a strike to Alshon Jeffery at the end of the first half for a 24-0 lead at the break and the Eagles eased up on offense in the second half, holding the final score below the closing total.
Week 11: Eagles 37, Cowboys 9
ATS Result: Eagles -6
Over/Under Total Result: Under 48
The Eagles used a second-half onslaught to overcome a 9-7 deficit and easily cover the spread for a seventh straight game. Wentz tossed a pair of scoring passes, Cory Clement had a touchdown run and Nigel Bradham returned a fumble for six as the Eagles outscored the Boys 30-0 over the final two quarters.
Week 10: BYE
Week 9: Eagles 51, Broncos 23
ATS Result: Eagles -7
Over/Under Total Result: Over 41
Wentz threw four scoring passes for the third time in five games and the Eagles ran for nearly 200 yards in their lopsided victory that gave them a sixth straight ATS win. Philly was pretty impressive on defense as well, limiting Denver to 226 yards while picking off two passes and recording three sacks. The Eagles eclipsed the total on their own with Wentz’s TD pass in the third quarter.
Week 8: Eagles 33, 49ers 10
ATS Result: Eagles -13
Over/Under Total Result: Under 45
The Eagles were forced to punt on six of their first eight possessions, but they scored 10 points on the other two and got a pick-six from Jalen Mills to take a 17-0 lead. When the offense started clicking, the Niners had no chance. The defense hounded Beathard and two long second-half touchdown drives gave the Eagles enough to cover the spread for a fourth straight game.
Week 7: Eagles 34, Redskins 24
ATS Result: Eagles -5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 48.5
It took a while for Wentz and the offense to get going, but once they did the Eagles were on their way to a fourth straight cover. They went three-and-out on three of their first four possessions and were trailing 10-3 before Wentz threw scoring passes on the next three drives for a 24-10 lead. The offenses were clicking with Wentz and Kirk Cousins combining for seven scoring passes to easily cash the over.
Week 6: Eagles 28, Panthers 23
ATS Result: Eagles +3
Over/Under Total Result: Over 44
Wentz continued his hot play with three more touchdown passes, but it was the play of the defense in slowing down Newton and the Panthers that gave the Eagles their third straight ATS win. Wentz tossed a pair of short scoring passes after Carolina turnovers, one coming near the end of the first half and another early in the second half to turn the game in Philly’s favor.
Week 5: Eagles 34, Cardinals 7
ATS Result: Eagles -6
Over/Under Total Result: Under 45
Wentz was on fire and Philly shut down the one-dimensional Cards for an easy cover win. Wentz had three first-quarter scoring passes on consecutive throws giving the Eagles an early 21-0 lead and they cruised from there. The defense forced two turnovers and held the Cards to 307 yards and special teams chipped in with a long punt return and a blocked field goal in a dominant performance.
Week 4: Eagles 26, Chargers 24
ATS Result: Eagles +2
Over/Under Total Result: Over 48
The Eagles scored on their first four possessions and never trailed to get the outright win as a 2-point dog. After the Chargers closed within two with a fourth quarter touchdown to cash the over, the Eagles chewed up the final 6:44 with an assortment of runs and short passes, never giving Philip Rivers a chance for a game-winning drive. Philly totaled 454 yards of offense with a balanced attack.
Week 3: Eagles 27, Giants 24
ATS Result: Giants +5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 43
It looked like a breeze with the Eagles taking a 14-0 lead into the fourth quarter. But it took a franchise record 61-yard field goal by rookie Jake Elliott with no time remaining to eke out the 27-24 win. Philly surrendered 24 points in the quarter and needed a 46-yard Elliott field goal to tie the game with less than a minute remaining. Poor clock management by the Giants and a poorer punt gave the Eagles just enough time and space to convert, though they missed covering the spread.
Week 2: Chiefs 27, Eagles 20
ATS Result: Chiefs -4
Over/Under Total Result: Over 46.5
The Eagles held the Chiefs in check for most of the afternoon, bottling up KC’s playmakers until the fourth quarter when the game got away from them. With the score tied, Wentz had a pass tipped an intercepted, which led to the go-ahead score midway through the final period. Facing a 14-point deficit, the Eagles scored late to close the gap and cash the over, but couldn’t convert after recovering an on-side kick.
Week 1: Eagles 30, Redskins 17
ATS Result: Eagles -2
Over/Under Total Result: Under 49.5
With all the additions on the offensive side of the ball, don’t forget about the Eagles defense. Philly harassed Kirk Cousins, forcing the Skins QB into three turnovers and sacking him four times. The Eagles sealed their Week 1 win with a defensive score after a strip-sack by Brandon Graham. Fletcher Cox returned the fumble 20 yards to squelch the Skins drive with less than two minutes left. Philly got a field goal at the end of the first half to reclaim the lead, and outscored Washington 14-3 in the second half to get the cover win.
Preseason Record: 2-2
ATS Record: 2-2
Over/Under Total Record: 1-3
The Eagles opened last season with three straight wins and looked good doing it. Granted, the first two were over Cleveland and Chicago. But the third was a 34-3 stunner of Pittsburgh. That game showed us what Philly is capable of. A winning start might be more difficult this year with the Eagles in DC for the opener. Philly has lost five straight in the series and is 0-5 ATS in that span.
Week 1: Eagles at Redskins, Sunday, Sept. 10, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 2: Eagles at Chiefs, Sunday, Sept. 17, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 3: Eagles vs. Giants, Sunday, Sept. 24, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 4: Eagles at Chargers, Sunday, Oct. 1, 4:05 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 5: Eagles vs. Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 8, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 6: Eagles at Panthers, Thursday, Oct. 12, 8:25 p.m. ET – CBS/NFL Network
Week 7: Eagles vs. Redskins, Monday, Oct. 23, 8:30 p.m. ET – ESPN
Week 8: Eagles vs. 49ers, Sunday, Oct. 29, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 9: Eagles vs. Broncos, Sunday, Nov. 5, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 10: Bye Week
Week 11: Eagles at Cowboys, Sunday, Nov. 19, 8:30 p.m. ET – NBC
Week 12: Eagles Bears, Sunday Nov. 26, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 13: Eagles at Seahawks, Sunday, Dec. 3, 8:30 p.m. – NBC
Week 14: Eagles at Rams, Sunday, Dec. 10, 4:25 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 15: Eagles at Giants, Sunday, Dec. 17, 1:00 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 16: Eagles vs. Raiders, Monday, Dec. 25, 8:30 p.m. ET – ESPN
Week 17: Eagles vs. Cowboys, Sunday, Dec. 31, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
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