Atlanta Falcons (11-6) at Philadelphia Eagles (13-3)
|Date & Time||Saturday January 13, 2018, 4:35 PM (EST)|
The Line: Philadelphia Eagles +2.5 -- Over/Under: 41.5
The Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles meet Saturday in the NFL NFC Divisional Playoffs at Lincoln Financial Field.
The Atlanta Falcons are coming off a wild card win over the Los Angeles Rams and hope to make back-to-back NFC Championship appearances. The Atlanta Falcons have won four of their last six road games. Matt Ryan is completing 64.7 percent of his passes for 4,095 yards, 20 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Ryan has one or less touchdown passes in each of his last seven games. Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu have combined for 2,147 receiving yards and eight touchdowns while Austin Hooper has 49 receptions. The Atlanta Falcons ground game is averaging 115.4 yards per contest, and Devonta Freeman leads the way with 865 yards and seven touchdowns. Defensively, Atlanta is allowing 19.7 points and 318.4 yards per game. Deion Jones leads the Atlanta Falcons with 138 tackles, Adrian Clayborn has 9.5 sacks and Robert Alford has 20 pass deflections.
The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t played since New Years Eve and hope to make their first NFC Championship appearance since the 2008 NFL season. The Philadelphia Eagles have won seven of their last eight home games. Nick Foles is completing 56.4 percent of his passes for 537 yards, five touchdowns and two interceptions. Foles enters this game with just 101 pass attempts under his belt this season. Zach Ertz and Alshon Jeffery have combined for 1,613 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns while Nelson Agholor has 62 receptions. The Philadelphia Eagles ground game is averaging 132.2 yards per contest, and LeGarrette Blount leads the way with 766 yards and two touchdowns. Defensively, Philadelphia is allowing 18.4 points and 306.5 yards per game. Nigel Bradham leads the Philadelphia Eagles with 88 tackles, Brandon Graham has 9.5 sacks and Patrick Robinson has four interceptions.
The Falcons are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 Saturday games, 14-6 ATS in their last 20 vs. NFC and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 road games. The Eagles are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The Falcons are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 meetings in Philadelphia, the home team is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings and the under is 8-3-1 in the last 12 meetings. The under is 5-2 in Eagles last 7 games overall and the under is 6-0 in Falcons last 6 games overall.
I'm actually surprised that the Philadelphia Eagles are an underdog in this game. It's actually the first time the No. 1 seed is an underdog in its first playoff game. I understand that the Eagles aren't the same without Carson Wentz, and Foles has been a career backup for a reason. However, the two things you need to have in order to have success in the playoffs, the Eagles have; running game and defense. The Eagles had the third most rushing yards of any team in the league and their defense allowed the fourth fewest total yards while creating 31 turnovers, which was also fourth in the NFL. The Eagles are still a really good football team, and that's without throwing in the home crowd and the rest factor, which also includes a long trip back home for the Falcons from the west coast. We've seen a lot of traveling take its toll on teams in the past, and that's a lot of miles in one week. I also remain a little iffy on the Falcons, as they've been hit or miss all season long and didn't exactly open the game up against the Rams last week despite the Rams doing little offensively. I really like the Eagles in this spot, and while getting free points is always nice, I'll be on the ML as well in this one.