The Ravens pack up & take a short flight to Philadelphia where the Eagles will be ready to rumble. After reviewing the NFL odds we determine which side is most likely to cash in our NFL picks.
Baltimore Ravens (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS)
Joe Flacco was only in for a series against the New Orleans Saints in the Ravens preseason opener but looked as cool as the other side of the pillow in completing 5-of-6 for 33 passing yards and rushing for an additional 17 culminating in a one-yard touchdown plunge by Lorenzo Taliaferro to give Baltimore the early lead. Two-time Pro Bowler Matt Schaub is slated to backup Flacco and he connected for a 45-yard strike to Michael Campanaro for the team's second TD of the contest. Schaub ended the game on 11-of-18 passing for 134 yards with one TD and one pick while third-stringer Bryn Renner tossed for 88 yards on 6-of-14 passing with one interception.
You can't say the Ravens left anyone out as 13 players had at least one reception and the offense looked like they had done their homework as they clinched the victory on a one-yard Bryn Renner touchdown run with only two seconds remaining in the contest. The Ravens sent the fans home happy with a 30-27 win but it wasn't without a few injuries. Tight end Allen Reisner broke his ankle and was on the surgeon's table before the game even ended. Defensive back and kick-returner Asa Jackson departed in the second quarter with a knee injury.
Philadelphia Eagles (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS)
Sam Bradford did not participate in Week 1 of the preseason but there were plenty of exciting moments during the Eagles 36-10 throttling of the Indianapolis Colts. Tim Tebow took the field to a thunderous applause from the Philly faithful and did not disappoint as he completed his first four passes and ended the drive with a gutsy seven yard dive into the endzone. When the smoked cleared Tebow was 6-of-12 for 69 yards and had 15 yards on the ground.
Wide receiver and first round pick in this year's draft Nelson Agholor lived up to his billing by taking a 34-yard pass from Mark Sanchez to the house after deftly avoiding a tackle and racing into the endzone. Speaking of Sanchez that was the highlight of his night after completing just 2-of-7 passes for a grand total of 52 yards. Sanchez did not look sharp as he underthrew Trey Burton on the very first play of the game and then overthrew Jordan Matthews on what would have been an easy walk into the endzone.
Third year man Matt Barkley got most of the reps as he battles Tebow for the third-string spot and ended the night with 192 yards and one interception. DeMarco Murray did not play and backup Ryan Mathews got only two carries but garnered 18 yards. Second-year running back Kenjon Barner made the coaches sit up and take notice as the Oregon product dazzled with a 92 yard punt return for a touchdown and prior to that found the endzone on a nine-yard run to put the Eagles up 13-3 late in the first-quarter.
Can we trade this preseason meeting for one when the games really count? I would love to see Chip Kelly going hard against this Baltimore team full of grit, determination and a will to get back to the Super Bowl. However, we have to bet the games the NFL puts in front of us and after perusing the NFL odds I see the Eagles are 3 ½ point home favorites and I am going to bet that Kelly keeps the pedal to the metal and floors the Ravens when they come to the City of Brotherly Love. It's all about perception for Kelly at this point as he wants his team to believe in the team he has built (not to mention ownership that gave him the keys to the store) and I think he will be far more bent on winning than an experienced team like Baltimore who is more concerned with finding out what they have.
NFL Pick: Play the Eagles -3 ½ at YouWager