2015 NFL Preview – Philadelphia Eagles vs. Washington Redskins

This Sunday, October 4, 2015, the Philadelphia Eagles (1-2) play the Washington Redskins (1-2). The teams are presently in a three-way tie in the NFC East with the New York Giants for second. In terms of points for, points against, and differential, the Eagles and Skins are very close to one another. Philly has scored 58 and allowed 63 for a minus 5 differential, while Washington has score 55 and given up 59 for a minus 4 differential.

The bookies have favored the Eagles by 3 points. The game may be that close. However, there are some factors that could tip the contest in one direction or another.

Philadelphia Offense vs. Redskins Defense

The Eagles offense has been ineffective with their running game being especially lacking. Their best chance of scoring is through the air and that’s not saying much at this point. Quarterback Sam Bradford has not performed well, tossing 4 interceptions, losing one fumble, and completing 62.4% of his passes. Receiver Jordan Matthews has made 22 catches, averaging 10.5 yards per catch and crossing the goal line once.

Darren Sproles is a threat as both a pass catcher and a runner. Sproles, who’s averaging 3.9 YPA, has one rushing TD; he has also caught 15 passes, averaging 7.9 YPC. Sproles’ combined yards stand at an impressive 181. Plus, he’s returned a punt 89 yards for a score. He’s a major scoring threat and the Eagles need to use him.

On defense, the Skins have been able to put some pressure in QBs, and they’ve played decently against the run. Their secondary still does not have a pick. However, they’ve kept opponents to under 20 points per game. The big question for the D is can they handle Sproles? They will have to in order to win. Washington needs a big game from LB Keenan Robinson who leads the team in solo tackles with 17 and total tackles with 24.

Washington Offense vs. Eagles Defense

Like Eagles QB Bradford, Washington’s signal caller Kirk Cousins has had his ups and downs this season. With a completion rate of 69.2% and a QB rating of 81.3, it’s clear that he’s had some success. However, he’s tossed 4 interceptions to 3 TDs. The Skins’ passing game is decent, and their running attack is much better. TE Jordan Reed is a safe outlet man for Cousins, while WR Pierre Garcon is his other favorite target. With 19 catches, Reed is averaging 12.7 YPC, while Garcon, with 17 catches, is getting 9.5 YPC.

The running duo of Alfred Morris and Matt Jones has been very effective. Morris has accumulated 199 yards on 49 carries for an average of 4.1 YPA. Jones has equally impressive numbers getting 189 yards on 36 rushes for 5.3 YPA. Each has one TD. However, Jones has fumbled twice and lost both.

The Eagles have an advantage on defense, especially if they can exploit Jones’ tendency for fumbling. The Philly defense has forced 4 fumbles and recovered 3. Plus, they have notched 5 sacks and taken in 5 interceptions.

On D, deep back Walter Thurmond III has been especially effective with 2 interceptions, 2 passes defended, and 3 tackles for a loss. FS Malcolm Jones has 4 TFL and 2 forced fumbles. If the Philadelphia defense can create havoc in Washington’s ranks, they will win this contest.

Other Considerations

Philly started the season with a 26-24 loss to the Falcons and then another loss, 20-10, to the Cowboys. Last week they earned their first win by beating the pesky Jets 24-17. Washington also started the season off with a loss, as the Dolphins beat them 17-10. The next week they rebounded with a 24-10 win over St. Louis. They come into this game having suffered a 32-21 loss to the Giants.

The Eagles offense will try to work the short passing game and will utilize options with Sproles. They won’t score a lot of points, which means they will expect their defense to control the Redskins’ aggressive running game. This game comes down to Philadelphia’s defense causing Washington’s offense to make mistakes.

Best Bets

The Eagles have a good shot at winning this game. Their defense looks to be primed and ready to create problems for the Skins. Take Philadelphia at minus 3. The total stands at 44. Go with the under for this game.

October 2, 2015 by : Posted in NFL, Sportsbook No Comments

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