Each week Ill be making predictions, for fun, against the spread on the year. We’ll be using whatever the ESPN Pick ‘em spreads are. Starting in either week 4 or 5 Ill base my picks on my efficiency stats that I keep as a method of power ranking the NFL teams, but for now these are just guesses on the teams’ prospects. Last weeks record was 9-7 ATS and 13-3 straight up. Records on the year are now 23-9 SU and 17-15 ATS. Ill post the rest of the games on Friday. If you click on the teams it will take you to their financial matchup chart for the game.
Chiefs (+3.5) over EAGLES– I tend to think that the play of the Redskins in Green Bay last week put the Eagles offense more in perspective. Coming off the Redskins game the Chip Kelly Eagles were considered some type of revolutionary NFL offense. Now I think we are beginning to look at them a bit differently and more at explosive playmakers making the offense go.
Last weeks game against the Chargers highlighted the good and bad of the Eagles offense. They did not get off nearly the amount of plays they did in week 1 in part because San Diego didn’t just hand them the ball every time they touched it, which is what the Redskins did in week 1. What I saw in Philadelphia is what I believed about the in the preseason. They are an explosive team with down the field speed and elusiveness in the backfield. It is a big play offense that can score quickly from almost anywhere on the field. Of course when you do that the amount of plays is likely going to drop.
The Chargers offense last week was on the field for 2/3 of the game. Between the fast scoring and general offensive pace the Eagles defense will never get a break this season. I think that is a negative and something that the coach is going to have to balance as time goes on. There are times when your defense needs a break and running at that pace is not always going to get things done. The 3 and out in this offense can be a disaster based on the lack of time actually spent in real terms running the offense.
This game is going to be quite the contrast in styles. The Chiefs are going to slowly try to pick the defense apart through the passing game and slow the pace of the game down. They do not have the weapons that the Chargers do to get into a shootout and win, but they are far stronger defensively and can pressure the QB. I think Kansas City’s goal has to be to eliminate one of the three weapons in the offense.
While Im sure they want to get their hands on Vick I think the person they most want to get out of rhythm is DeSean Jackson,. He is the guy making the offense go right now because he is ridiculously fast and he is just getting the green light on every play. In the past you could maybe pick your spots with him because if you missed jamming him at the line he may not have had the green light to go anyway, Now there is no margin for error because the green light is always on. Id actually consider using a safety to jam him and then letting my top flight cover guys pick him up rather than chance my cover guys playing catch up if they miss. Chiefs coach Andy Reid should know his tendencies which should be a help for the Chiefs.
If Kansas City can slow the game down they should win. It would be nice to see Jamaal Charles get more involved than he has been and they should be able to exploit him in the passing game as well. I think once you get the Eagles on their heels they will easily fall for the run with him, but the coach has to be willing to run it which he usually is not. I do think KC will follow some of the Chargers blueprint which was to run the playclock down to keep the Eagle offense off the field and pester that Eagles defense.
My feeling is that KC will be able to take one weapon on that Eagles offense away tonight. Once they do that they will win outright and move to 3-0 on the season. Lets hope for a fun game.
Chiefs 27 Eagles 24
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.