Philadelphia Eagles (7-2 SU, 6-3 ATS) vs. Green Bay Packers (6-3 SU, 5-3-1 ATS)
NFL Football Week 11
Date and Time: Novermber 16 – 4:25pm ET
Where: Lambeau Field
by Evergreen, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: PHI +6/GB -6
Over/Under Total: 54.5
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Each NFL week usually features a marquee game or two and one such matchup from week 11 has the Philadelphia Eagles traveling to Green Bay to take on the Packers. The Eagles sit atop the NFC East but need to keep winning to stay ahead of the Cowboys while the Packers are a game behind the Lions in the NFC North. Considering Green Bay would be out of the playoffs if they started today, this one probably means a little more to the Pack. The winner this week not only improves their playoff standing but will own the tiebreaker edge over the other and that could play a big role at seasons end.
The online betting sites started the week with Green Bay as five-point favorites but the line has moved to six by Wednesday and the over/under is set at 54 and a half. The Eagles have struggled against better opponents of late, going 4-12-1 against the spread in their last 17 games against teams with a winning record and they are just 1-4 ATS in their games following a Monday Night appearance. Green Bay is 5-1 ATS in their last six overall and 4-0-1 ATS in the last five games at Lambeau. The favorite has a 5-2 ATS record in the seven games between these teams.
Issue number one for the Eagles is maintaining their offensive production without starting QB Nick Foles. Foles is likely out for the remainder of the year, leaving Mark Sanchez to lead the leagues 5th best offense in terms of yards gained and the Eagles enter the week 4th in scoring, averaging 31 points per game. Sanchez has played well, throwing for 534 yards and four touchdowns in a little more than one game. The offense seems to be the same as with Foles and Sanchez has even attempted seven rushes so it appears that the full Chip Kelly playbook is in use. We know what kind of weapon the Eagles have in Jeremy Maclin but Jordan Matthews has chemistry with Sanchez from working together on the second team and it showed with a 7-138-2 performance last week. Green Bay is solid against the pass, ranking ninth in yards allowed and intercepting 12 passes but they are just 30thagainst the run and LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles will give them problems in the pass game.
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Aaron Rodgers is the gold-standard of quarterbacking right now and enters the game with 25 touchdowns against just three interceptions. He has found Jordy Nelson or Randall Cobb for 18 of those touchdowns and that duo has simply been unstoppable in combining for 1,539 yards already. Eddie Lacy should find some room to run against the 19th best rush defense and the Eagles fall to 21st in total yards allowed. There seems little doubt that the Packers will move the ball and score but Philadelphia has had the X-factor all year whether it be defensive or special teams touchdowns.
This is a great contest on paper with the Eagles 6th and the Packers 7th in the Sagarin rankings and both clubs are dealing with very few injuries. There are plenty of playmakers on the field for both sides so this should come down to who can get that key stop or turn the other team over. Green Bay has nine different players with at least one interception and the defensive scheme seems to be changing with Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers wearing multiple hats. Connor Barwin leads the Eagles with 10.5 sacks and gets to go against a Packer offensive line that hasnt performed well at any point this year. Philadelphia leads the league with four defensive touchdowns.
Assuming Rodgers and his receivers get their production is a good bet and the Eagles will have to stay close to prevent Green Bay from zeroing in on Sanchez. McCoy should see more success than his current 3.7 yards per carry average and both he and Sproles should give the Packer linebackers fits in coverage. Watch for Zach Ertz and/or Brent Celek to have some impact in this game as Sanchez likes to work inside the numbers. A third option of Andrew Quarless or Davante Adams should emerge if the Eagles can keep either Cobb or Nelson locked down but make no mistake, both teams will get their points this week.
The Packers are 4-0 at home this year and pass the eye-test as one of the best teams in football regardless of location. Too much Rodgers will ultimately send the Eagles packing with a loss as Sanchez cant be expected to put up the kind of numbers it will take to keep up. Philly keeps it close as the speedy running backs frustrate the Packers early but a late TD and a little Lacy clockwork put this one to bed. Green Bay 35 Philadelphia 27
Evergreens Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Green Bay