The world champion Philadelphia Eagles are essentially facing a must-win situation on Sunday Night Football when they face the Los Angeles Rams. The Rams are an astounding 11.5-point favorite to beat the Eagles.
The Rams are coming off just their second loss of the season. Last week against the Bears, the vaunted Los Angeles offense was held to just six points, a far cry from their previous season-low of 23 points. While there’s nothing wrong with being 11-2, that loss could end up costing the Rams home-field advantage in the playoffs if the Saints don’t lose another game the rest of the season.
As for the Eagles, they lost a hard-fought game against the Cowboys last week that prevented them from winning their third game in a row. On the bright side, all of the other teams competing for the final wild-card spot in the NFC also lost. However, the Eagles remain half a game behind the Vikings for that playoff spot and may need to win out over the final three weeks of the season in order to get back to the playoffs.
Is there a Super Bowl MVP in the Building?
Earlier this week, the Eagles were hit with the news that Carson Wentz is out with a fractured back and may not play again this season. In steps Nick Foles as the new quarterback. Of course, Foles took over for an injured Wentz around this time last year, and that story ends with Foles winning Super Bowl MVP. That gives the Eagles some level of confidence that Foles can handle this situation.
However, the circumstances this year are much different from a year ago. The Eagles don’t have a top-notch offensive line or a stable running game to help support Foles. Even Philadelphia’s receivers outside of tight end Zach Ertz have underperformed this season. Foles doesn’t have a ton of help around him, and this week he’ll be facing a Rams defense loves getting after the quarterback.
No Big Deal
As mentioned, the Rams scored just six points a week ago. However, there’s no reason to think that’s a sign of things to come. Jared Goff and company were playing in cold weather on the road against one of the best defenses in the NFL. There’s every reason to think the Rams will get back on track quickly, especially against the Philadelphia defense.
A week ago, the Eagles couldn’t contain Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas running game. They also had a world of problems stopping Amari Cooper. This week, they’ll deal with an equally talented running back in Todd Gurley, a better quarterback in Goff, and two high-level wide receivers in Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods. That’s a tall task for a defense that’s average at best.
Last week’s loss should only make the Rams more focused upon their return home. They’ll be eager to make up for only scoring six points last week and should be clicking on all cylinders against an ill-equipped Philadelphia defense. Meanwhile, Foles will struggle to keep without enough help around him. The line is substantial, but bet on the Rams covering 11.5 points against the Eagles on Sunday night.