In this NFL betting preview find out why high-Flying Philadelphia Eagles present the value NFL pick in week 1 Monday Night Football betting at the expense of the Atlanta Falcons.
Philadelphia Eagles Open As Road Faves
The Philadelphia Eagles are set to open their season at the Georgia Dome, a tough place to play on any given day, never mind Monday Night Football. Nevertheless, odds makers fancy Chip Kelly’s Eagles to fly the coop with the pivotal W. They are installed as the -150 favorites to win straight up on the NFL odds board (or thereabouts depending on your choice sportsbook) and hugging a field goal line on the road.
Marking Monday Night Football’s early serving, this should be one of the MUST-SEE games in week 1’s entire slate. Chip Kelly’s revamped Eagles put in a solid 3-1 SU account in the preseason, which included brilliant wins over the Colts, Ravens and Packers – only some of the Super Bowl 50 contenders this season. Although they lost their last outing 24-18 to the NY Jets, NFL fans saw enough of Chip Kelly’s new-look Eagles, the subject of much debate for his bold and brash roster selections, to become instant believers. Almost overnight buying what they are selling in a hurry, even though prevailing wisdom suggests preseason results aren’t always indicative of regular season results.
Early NFL betting markets opened with the Eagles installed as the 1-to-1.5-point favourites in this game. That was before the preseason got underway with the Eagles soaring to outscore opponents 133-to-77 combined for a whopping 56-point differential. It’s no wonder then that after such an offensive feast the Eagles swelled to as high as 3-points.
A field-goal advantage on the road is no mean thing, particularly against another offensive-minded outfit such as the Atlanta Falcons. In fact, there are those NFL betting fans that would have the Falcons their sleeper NFL pick in the NFC South to win the title over the main contenders New Orleans Saints and defending champions Carolina Panthers.
The merit of such a notion rests on how well rookie coach Dan Quinn fares at the helm and how well Atlanta’s defense holds up this season. Last year, they were a laughing stock. Quinn’s pedigree in Seattle as the defensive coach is undeniable but it’s one thing to have the Legion of Boom at your disposal another the Falcons’ defense, which finished 32nd in the league in total defense, not to mention bottom of the pile against the pass as well with 280 yards per game allowed and 21st against the run with 118.4 yards per game allowed.
Atlanta Falcons Look To Punch Above NFL Odds
With most of the changes in Atlanta occurring at front office, it’s no wonder that NFL odds makers are being conservative. Atlanta’s defense underwent very little change, so too offense remained mainly intact. So, essentially, the same outfit that finished 6-10 SU last season is set to take the field this week, which will make overcoming the indelible impression they left behind in the minds of NFL bettors challenging. Then again, it’s worth pointing out that the Falcons have drawn the easiest NFL schedule this season.
Matt Ryan and the Falcons could defy the NFL odds in week 1. As it is, they are installed as the +130 home underdogs to win straight up and as the 3-point home pups. Ryan wasn’t too shabby last season and there were games in which he and his O-line truly shined bright – for instance, against the Packers. Symptomatic collapses on both sides of the ball undid any flashes of brilliance, which led to the debilitating 6-10 SU season, but with the Eagles’ defense not exactly registering on the radar as the toughest in the NFL, those might not rear their ugly heads.
NFL Betting Verdict
On balance, there’s a lot to love about this matchup. It should be a telling opening platform for both teams and the directions they might take in the coming season. One thing is certain, the Chip Kelly experiment is going to be the main talking point when all is said and done. Perhaps, it’s a bit premature to call it a screaming success. But if the Eagles are anywhere nearly as potent on offense as they were in the preseason, they could run away with this game on the scoreboard. As such, we’re of the mind to go with the bookies here and take the Eagles as the road faves to cover the generous 3-point spread with our NFL picks.
NFL Picks: Eagles -3 at BetOnline