To be viewed as the best, you have to beat the best and the Atlanta Falcons have the opportunity to do that Week One. The defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles await with the two sides opening the 2018 NFL season on Thursday.
Atlanta Falcons-Philadelphia Eagles: Betting Tips, Players to Watch, Predictions
How to Tune in
Date: Thursday, September 6th, 8:20 EST
Atlanta Radio: 92.9 The Game with Wes Durham and Dave Archer
|Thursday September 6th||Scattered Thunderstorms||92º/73º||50%||NW 6 MPH||80%|
Unfortunately for both teams, a storm could hit the stadium during the game. Although not great, the wind isn’t awful and it’s only a 50 percent chance, so the weather shouldn’t have a huge effect on the game.
Betting Lines (Bovada)
Philadelphia Eagles: -3.0
- Philadelphia Cover: Philadelphia has a habit of covering against Atlanta in tightly contested home games. The last four times the teams have met in Philly, the spread has never been higher than 2.5 points either way and the Eagles have gone 3-1 ATS in those contests. And the Falcons struggled on the road in 2017, going 3-7 ATS in 10 games including the playoffs.
- Atlanta Win: Even for a team that made little to no off-season moves, the Super Bowl hangover is very much real (See Patriots losing opener last year). Combine that with no Carson Wentz, and the Falcons are a very good pick to win, even on the road.
- Under: With both the Eagles and Falcons having top 10 defenses, another less-risky good bet is to bet under 45 points.
Player to Watch
Tevin Coleman, Running Back
In Tevin Coleman‘s previous two matchups against the Eagles, he has totaled 30 rushes for 159 yards, including eight first downs, and one catch for 14 yards. The fourth-year running back out of Indiana averages 5.3 yards per carry which is the highest average in Falcons history against the Eagles (minimum of 25 carries). In the divisional-round matchup back in January, Coleman recorded 10 rushes for 79 yards and even though he wasn’t given the ball more, he has the opportunity to top that this game.
As a rematch of last year’s divisional round game, Atlanta will travel to Philadelphia to play the reigning world champions. The game ended in heartbreaking fashion as Atlanta had four plays from inside the 10 to score and they couldn’t do it. As heartbreaking as it was, it’s a new year and both teams are pretty much even with the Eagles getting a slight edge. The optimist/fan in me wants to say Steve Sarkisian and the Falcons offense will come out and play to their potential but in reality when Atlanta will start dominating offensively if ever, will be later in the year. I think the game ends just as close as last year but the winner isn’t as certain.
It was announced that Nick Foles will get the start and that gives me a little more confidence. Foles hasn’t looked great recently but this game will be decided in the trenches. The Eagles have a great offensive and defensive line but the Falcons have lines that can compete as well. I think right guard will be the most important position this week. Grady Jarrett, Deadrin Senat, and Brandon Fusco all have tall tasks ahead of them but if they play well, Atlanta has a very good chance to win.
Prediction: Atlanta Falcons 24-20 Philadelphia Eagles