If you’re still unsure of who to back in this primetime matchup, we’ve enlisted the help of those who know these teams best. Expert NFL bloggers Brandon Gowton of Birds 24/1 of Philadelphia Magazine and Jeff Hughes of Chicago blog Da Bears Blog strap on the pads and debate which team will not only win, but cover the spread Monday night.
WHY THE EAGLES WILL COVER
Brandon Gowton is an Eagles reporter for Birds 24/7 at Philadelphia Magazine. You can follow them on Twitter @BrandonGowton and @Birds247.
The Eagles’ rookie quarterback was very impressive in his first NFL career start. He made some truly great throws while showing poise and savvy beyond his years. It was just one game, and it was only the Browns, but there’s no denying what Wentz did was special. If he can continue to pick up where he left off, the Eagles have a chance to be better than people think.
Philadelphia’s defense held Cleveland’s offense to 10 points in Week 1. Schwartz’s unit would have made it six points if officials didn’t make some very questionable calls in the red zone. The Eagles have the pass rushing talent to get to Jay Cutler and make him uncomfortable. Chicago’s tackles aren’t stellar. Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, and Connor Barwin should be able to generate pressure from the edge. Cutler is prone to making mistakes under duress.
Former UDFA Trey Burton could be the x-factor in this game for the Eagles. The third-year tight end is expected to get more playing time in the expected absence of Zach Ertz. Burton looked great in training camp and preseason this summer. The Eagles like to go heavy on tight end sets so Burton could his fair share of targets. He might be able to catch the Bears’ defense by surprise.
WHY THE BEARS WILL COVER
Jeff Hughes is a writer for Da Bears Blog. You can follow them on Twitter @dabearsblog.
The Eagles rookie quarterback is on the road. Against Vic Fangio. It’s one thing to have a sterling debut against the triple-A franchise currently residing in Cleveland but this a much-improved Bears defense eager to please a desperate fan base. Wentz will see looks he’s never seen at any level. And one could easily expect him to make mistakes.
Eagles have clipped wings
Zach Ertz and Leodis McKelvin are too injuries the Eagles could not afford. Bears, due to youth at both outside backer and safety positions, will struggle covering tight ends early in the season. And McKelvin’s injury means a 7th round rookie will be matched up on Kevin White and Eddie Royal. Without a big time pass rush, Eagles in trouble.
Bears are just better
Chicago is the better team in this matchup. Despite some summer negativity, an objective analysis of the two rosters would lead to the conclusion the Bears are better. Better teams win at him. Especially in prime time.
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