New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles (-5, 49.5 o/u)
The national perspective early in the year is that the Philadelphia Eagles (2-3) are a dumpster fire of disappointment. But a win this week, would launch them into a tie for first in the NFC East and give them a crucial win over the new division favorites, the New York Giants (3-2). Philly hosts New York in a major Monday night tilt this Sunday (8:30 PM Eastern).
The Giants enter this game with a slew of injuries at receiver. Victor Cruz’s return has taken longer than anticipated and now Rueben Randle and Odell Beckham Jr. could be joining him on the sideline, with each battling hamstring injuries. That said, Eli Manning looked great on last week’s game-winning drive with those two on the sidelines, working a series of dump offs to Shane Vereen before hitting Larry Donnell for a TD with 21 seconds left.
It will be harder to have success for the entire game with just Vereen in the passing game though. Manning has gone two straight games at “The Linc” without throwing a touchdown pass and Monday could be shaping up to be his third such outing if none of his receivers can go. So while the Giants run game hasn’t been good to start the year, they will need a solid contribution from Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams on the ground.
But even with the Giants looking potentially shorthanded on offense, don’t immediately think the Eagles can run them out of the building. Their offense at full strength is still arguably worse. Yes, Philly had a big 39-point win over the woeful Saints last week; but they scored two touchdowns on very short field as a result of Drew Brees fumbles. In total the Eagles scored 20 points off of four turnovers. The Giants, they have three turnovers all season.
So while the Eagles can’t expect many gift from the G-men, that doesn’t mean they won’t return the favor. Sam Bradford’s offense has coughed the ball up 10 times this year, and they’re second last in the league on third down conversions. Fitting that the “City of Brotherly Love” is so open to sharing the football.
Don’t get over confident in this Eagles group just yet, they haven’t shown any consistency. The Giants and Eagles have split the last four games here, and only last year’s 27-0 win (the game Cruz was injured in) was by more than five points. Banged up or not, the Giants should at least cover here.
Pick: Giants +5.
(Photo Credit: Keith Allison (Originally posted to Flickr)[https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/])