Reasons Why The Eagles Will Beat The Falcons In The Playoffs

Aubrey Yates
January 13, 2018

The weight of a pessimistic city and its once-promising National Football League playoff aspirations now rest on the shoulders of the Philadelphia Eagles' unexpected leader. "I've been a visiting player coming into this stadium in a playoff-type atmosphere and it's tough to play because our fans are loud from the opening kickoff to the last whistle of the game". As for the Eagles, they've been home the last four weeks, and haven't wandered any farther than New Jersey since December 10.

The Eagles went the opposite direction, losing their next five to be eliminated from postseason contention, before winning their last two. Going through a full practice two days before the game seems promising for Ellerbe's chances to play Saturday, and the Eagles may need him. "If teams want to overlook us, that is good".

In this December 25, 2017, file photo, Philadelphia Eagles' Jay Ajayi (36) runs for a touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders, in Philadelphia.

"Let's go play. Let's go execute the offense", Coach Doug Pederson said in advance of their NFC Divisional Round playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field. Hence, they are the first number one seed to be an underdog in NFL History. Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers have had a soap opera-like season, but they are 4-0-1 ATS in their last five games at this stage of the playoffs.

As of now, both Atlanta and Philadelphia will all starters (minus Wentz) available for the Divisional Round game.

That said, the Falcons' offense has struggled inside the red zone recently, settling for a slew of field goals in opponent territory. Kendricks also recorded two sacks this season.

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They are in 5th position midway through the season in which they were expected to actually challenge for the title. Tottenham's last trophy was the League Cup in 2008.

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Despite their home field advantage, the Eagles are considered the underdog in this contest due to the absence of quarterback Carson Wentz, who was a heavy favorite for league MVP before a serious injury against the Los Angeles Rams on December 10 took him out of play for the remainder of the season. The secondary is also underrated thanks to three solid corners in Desmond Trufant, Robert Alford and Brian Poole (who was outstanding from a tackling standpoint last week in the win over the Rams), as well as a thumper in Keanu Neal at strong safety. The Linc will be loud this weekend, as the fanbase as a whole has been waiting four years for another playoff game. That looked much more like the club that reached Super Bowl LI. Doubling up on the Atlanta D/ST and Philadelphia D/ST to score the first Touchdown.

■ VIKINGS (-4½) over Saints: Minnesota has been a cover machine under coach Mike Zimmer, compiling a league-leading 44-21 record (67.6 percent) against the spread since 2014.

■ Jaguars-STEELERS (Under 41): Jacksonville's No. 2 scoring defense (15.9) shut down Buffalo in Sunday's 10-3 wild-card win. The Falcons are hurting, road tired and limited offensively.

So a big TV rating was the logical expectation for their game Saturday night, when they entertained - and lost to - the Atlanta Falcons.

Philadelphia (13-3 SU, 10-6 ATS) was on the bye last week.

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