Philadelphia denizens, as well as people who bet on NFL games online everywhere, must be very happy the Eagles, who have not only won four consecutive games straight-up, but have also covered NFL online betting spread three weeks in a row. Philly is, all told, 5-1 SU and 4-2 ATS this season. The secret of the Eagles’ success, at least last night against the Panthers, was their defense, which sacked Cam Newton twice, intercepted him thrice (of Newton’s three picks, two were converted into 15 points for Philly), and hit him 10 times. Philadelphia followed the Broncos’ Super Bowl 50 recipe and pressure Newton on almost half of his snaps, on which he had a passer rating of 28.2 (12-of-21 for 91 yards and two picks).
To exemplify how the Eagles defense was breathing down Newton’s neck, rookie defensive end Derek Barnett was 2.93 yards on average from Newton when the Panthers QB was dropping back in the tackle box. By way of comparison, the average “clean” pocket allows approximately 4½ yards of separation between a quarterback and the closest defender. It was defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, however, who set the pace, logging a pressure on almost 25%of Newton’s snaps. “It’s hard to focus on him because they do so many things with the football,” Cox said. “But I think we did a pretty good job on a short week preparing for a very creative running game. We were physical up front.” Philly is currently, as fans who bet on NFL games online should know, the odds-on favorite to win the NFC East.
The Eagles, whose first four wins came against teams who are a combined 5-14, and of whom none has a winning record, have officially gone from hype to hip, following their 28-23 “hard-fought win, on the road, on a short week, on prime-time TV,” as QB Carson Wentz, who for 222 yards and three touchdowns, described it, over the Panthers, who were themselves just starting to show glimpses of their 2015 brilliance, and were coming off back-to-back wins against the Patriots and Lions. “It’s a tremendous testament to those players in that locker room,” head coach Doug Pederson said. “They’re learning from last year. They’re learning how to finish games and just the overall consistency from the leaders leading this football team. They are sacrificing each other – themselves for the football team. It’s a fun thing to watch.” Yeah, self-sacrifice is always a riot.
Philadelphia is, in addition to being the faves of people who bet on NFL games online to win the NFC East, and on a well deserved break until they host the Redskins, a week and half from now, on top of that selfsame division.
Waking up 5-1 pic.twitter.com/DwP7xTHJZO
— Chris Long (@JOEL9ONE) October 13, 2017
“Having a year together with this team, under [Coach Pederson], myself, and everything, we’re just built differently. We have different character makeup in that locker room,” Wentz said. “We just have a bunch of guys that believe that no matter the situation we can find a way to win a ballgame.”