Week 17 NFL Picks: Side With Eagles To Cover +4.5 vs. Giants

Kevin Stott

Saturday, January 2, 2016 6:51 PM UTC

Saturday, Jan. 2, 2016 6:51 PM UTC

With nothing to play for and an Interim Coach filling in for Chip Kelly—who was released by the Philadelphia Eagles on Tuesday—is there any Common Sense way to bet on this game between the Eagles and the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium.

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NFL Pick: Eagles +4.5

Best Line Offered: at Heritage


Treading lightly seems the best prescription here as anything can happen and anything definitely will when these two meet. One thing can be counted on: QBs Eli Manning and Sam Bradford throwing the pigskin a lot, so with that in mind, lets dig for an NFL pick or two from the markets now available for this Week 17 game.


Odds Overview
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants Sunday [18:00] (FOX, Directv, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST). This NFC East game between DeMarco Murray and the Philadelphia Eagles (6-9 SU, 6-9 ATS) and the New York Giants (6-9 SU, 8-6-1 ATS) at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey (Partly Cloudy, 44°, Wind WNW 10-15 mph) on Sunday afternoon looked like it would have great meaning when the 2014/15 NFL Schedule was released, but now simply looks like the meaningless game that it is, that is unless finishing in 2nd place in this miserable division is deemed worthy of anything. So betting on and handicapping a game like this is more like an exercise in punching Bubbles—and the best advice would be to reduce amounts drastically with so many variables and neither team really playing for anything. Current odds see the host Giants now in a 3- to 3½-point range as home favorites over the visiting Eagles with the Total (Points) posted in a 45- (MGM Mirage) to 46-point (Pinnacle) range. 

The Giants are -174 Favorites in the Money Line (Winner) marketplace with the underdog Eagles lined at +157 (Station Casinos) on the takeback. The New York Giants Total Team Points has been set at 27 (Ladbrokes) while the Philadelphia Eagles Total Team Points is at 24 (Ladbrokes) for this game. And whenever you see the underdog in the market with 24 points in an NFL game, you know there are (usually) going to be some points scored. The Westgate SuperBook NFL Games of the Year—released late each Spring here in Las Vegas—had the Eagles open up Eagles as 2-point favorites here, so you can see how those momentary Wiseguy delusions that Philadelphia was a good NFL team were just delusions. The Advanced Line out last week had the Giants as 2½-point (-120 NFL odds) favorites, so you can a theoretical favorites flip here from that NFL Games of the Year point spread compared to today.


Philadelphia Eagles
On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Eagles (343 PF-400 PA, L2) released third-year Head Coach Chip Kelly (23-25 ATS), so Offensive Coordinator Pat Shurmur will be the team’s Interim Head Coach on Sunday here and will likely go out as the Eagles Head Coach with the best (100%) or worst (0%) lifetime ATS mark with either a 1-0 ATS or 0-1 ATS, depending in what happens in this meaningless affair. Perhaps Eagles team owner Jeff Lurie had seen enough from Kelly—who may be better suited for the college game or the Tennessee Titans—or perhaps he was just frustrated, as owners in this NFL division are wont to be these days, and maybe mad about Kelly’s demand for total control and/or for paying CB Byron Maxwell (Shoulder, Questionable) so much damn money to fill a void (CB) which hasn’t seemed to help this often leaky and uninspired Defense which has allowed 400 points heading in here.

Luckily for Philadelphia, the G-Men’s Defense has been a little worse. Woe is thee. Anyway, expect apathy to rule the day here as Shurmur coaches the team and Sam Bradford maybe plays like he wants to stay in the city of Brotherly Love or play like the college QB he sometimes seems to regress back to. It seems Oklahoma product Bradford will be throwing much with the usual Eagles Offensive Skill guys like veteran RB Darren Sproles, TE Zach Ertz (66 receptions, 701 yards, 2 TDs), RB Ryan Mathews, TE Brent Celek (25 receptions, 360 yards), WR Jordan Matthews, Rookie (USC), WR Nelson Agholor and RB Demarco Murray (Anytime TD Scorer +140, bet365), who along with former Cowboys teammate and now ex-Eagles WR Miles Austin, reportedly weren’t too fond of the way Kelly was running the team. So now, on Wednesday morning, both Kelly and Austin are gone and Murray remains. Make of that what you will. On the Injury front for Philadelphia, DT Bennie Logan (Calf) and Seyi Ajirotutu (Ankle) are both listed as Questionable along with that pricey CB Maxwell, while eight Eagles are on the Injured Reserve List including K Cody Parkey (Groin), DB JaCorey Shepherd (Knee), LB Travis Long (Knee) and T Andrew Gardner (Foot).


New York Giants
The SU Records and PF-PA numbers between the New York Giants (390-PF-407 PA) are almost like mirror images of each other, and not in a good way. And like the Eagles’ Kelly, 12th-year Giants Head Coach Tom Coughlin (107-91-4 ATS) may be elsewhere next season. And it although it seems much of New York NFC’s problems came on the Defensive side of the football, where, like the 30th-ranked Eagles (5,924 yards allowed, 26.7 ppg), the Giants (6,290 yards allowed, 27.1 ppg) completely sucked, ranking dead least (#32) in the NFL. Is “completely sucked” an acceptable phrase for perceived in-depth analysis? Well here, it fits perfectly and when you hear about all those reasons why Kelly, and maybe Coughlin (in The Future), lost their jobs, remember that if the Eagles and Giants were even half as much better Defensively this season, that both would be employed by these respective NFC East teams.

But the Giants Offense also left much to be desired and Injuries to DE Jason Pierre-Paul (Finger amputated after Fireworks accident) and WR Victor Cruz (Calf injury) didn’t help either as their contributions were about the same as penguins contributions to Global Warming, or Climate Change if you’re uptight, Heidi. Heading into this game, the Giants have 19 players on their list of injured, including the aforementioned Cruz—who played in 6 games this season—and Pierre-Paul, who is back and has played in 7 games. And speedy star WR Odell Beckham is listed as Questionable at one source and Probable at another (Wednesday), so after his 1-game Suspension, but without a physical injury, one would have to assume that he will be playing here. All in all, it seems that New York’s 0-2 start and brutal collapses in the 4th Quarter in both Weeks 1 and 2 doomed this team in many ways, although its’ lack of Heart in the pummeling by the Vikings in Minneapolis last weekend on SNF in Week 16 speaks volumes about this team’s overall desire and it’s quite clear now that the Jets are the best team in metropolitan Big Apple area and may be for quite some time. Defense always matters in sports and always will.


Recent Series Trends and Best Betting Approaches for Such a Meaningless Game
When these two played earlier this year in Week 6 in the City of Brotherly Love and cracked Liberty Bells, the host Eagles won, 27-7 and covered ATS as 3½-point favorites. The recent, and perceived relevant Trends here strongly favor the Eagles with Philadelphia 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series after that ATS cover earlier this season in Philly. And the Eagles are 7-1 ATS the L8 here on the Road at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, and getting a 3½ (above that Key Number of 3) seems like the call here, but remember that Motivation thing...in that there could be little.

Now in the marketplace (Wednesday morning), there are several sportsbooks hanging 3½’s including Station Casinos here in Las Vegas and EasyStreet, DSI, Bookmaker, Sportsbook.ag, BetOnline, Heritage, Catalina, and CarbonSports.ag Offshore and Online. And with these two teams having two of the bottom three Total Defenses in the NFL and the feel for this game so apathetic, this Week 17 game seems like a good Over as either Fear or Sloppiness—or some perverted combination of the both may end up ruling the day at 1 MetLife Stadium Drive. Like about 20 other teams on Sunday, these two will just be glad the season is over and ready to rebuild (again) for 2016/17. and luckily for both, home for them is the NFC East where the Dallas Cowboys (4-11)—the team ironically with the best Defense in the division—have already called bottoms saving the loser of this game that nasty distinguishment...especially this horrific season.

Predicted Final Score: Philadelphia Eagles 28 New York Giants 27

NFL Week 17 Prop Pick: DeMarco Murray, Anytime TD Scorer +140 (bet365)

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