The early-season hype surrounding rookie Carson Wentz has quieted down, but the whispers are growing louder around two-time MVP Aaron Rodgers’ inability to stop his team’s maddening slump. Both quarterbacks will be trying to keep their teams in the playoff chase when Wentz and the Philadelphia Eagles host Rodgers and the sliding Green Bay Packers on Monday night.
The Eagles have dropped five of seven since No. 2 overall draft pick Wentz led them to a 3-0 start, slipping into last place in the NFC East. Still, the Eagles are right on the heels of division rival Washington (6-4-1) for the final playoff spot in the conference and also own a 4-0 record at home, including victories over Atlanta and Minnesota in their last two at Lincoln Financial Field. The Packers are in the midst of a spectacular four-game slide during which they have allowed a staggering 153 points, but Rodgers is maintaining a positive outlook. “I feel like we can run the table, I really do,” Rodgers said. “You just feel like it just takes one (win). We get one under our belts, things might start rolling for us and we can run the table.”
TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.
LINE HISTORY: The Eagles opened as 3.5-point home favorites and, despite a brief rise to -4, the spread currently sits on the opening number. The total hit the betting board at 48, dropped a full point to 47 and currently sits at 47.5. Check out the complete history here.
WEATHER REPORT: The forecast for Philadelphia is calling for partly cloudy skies and temperatures in the mid-40’s for kickoff on Monday evening – not too bad for late November in Philly. There will be a light breeze (3-4 mph) that will not be a factor.
WHAT SHARPS SAY: “Both teams are struggling after decent starts this season. Green Bay has gone just 1-5 SU (2-4 ATS) after a 3-1 SU (2-1-1 ATS) start, while Philadelphia has gone just 2-5 SU/ATS after their 3-0 SU/ATS start. Both teams are struggling to throw the ball as the Packers are averaging only 6.3 yards per pass this season (versus opponents that allow 6.7 ypp), while the Eagles average just 6.2 yards per pass (versus opponents that allow 6.8 ypp).” – Covers Expert Steve Merril.
Packers – LB J. Ryan (Probable, ankle), CB D. Randall (Questionable, groin), LB K. Fackrell (Questionable, hamstring), C J. Tretter (Questionable, knee), G T. Lang (Questionable, ankle), T D. Barclay (Questionable, shoulder), S K. Bice (Questionable, back), LB B. Martinez (Out, knee), CB D. Goodson (Out, knee), CB M. Dorleant (Questionable, undisclosed), CB S. Shields (I-R, concussion), RB E. Lacy (I-R, ankle), RB D. Jackson (I-R, knee), RB J. Crockett (I-R, shoulder).
Eagles – CB L. McKelvin (Probable, concussion), DE C. Barwin (Probable, undisclosed), RB D. Sproles (Probable, ribs), DE S. Means (Questionable, illness), DT T. Hart (Questionable, ankle), S T. Brooks (Questionable, hamstring), DT F. Cox (Questionable, undisclosed), RB R. Matthews (Out, knee), T H. Vaitai (Out, knee), T L. Johnson (Elig Week 16, suspension), CB R. Brooks (I-R, quadricep), LB J. Walker (I-R, knee), DE A. McCalister (I-R, calf).
The Green Bay Packers don’t have a cheerleading squad, so the Philadelphia Eagles go unopposed this week.
ABOUT THE PACKERS (4-6 SU, 4-5-1 ATS, 6-4 O/U): Following narrow losses to Atlanta and Indianapolis by a combined six points, Green Bay’s defense has been carved up for 89 points by Tennessee and Washington in the first two stops of its three-game road trip. With the Packers having failed to force a turnover in three of the last four defeats, defensive coordinator Dom Capers told reporters: “You just keep working at it. … We know how to do it, we’ve done it for quite a while around here, but we’re not getting it done right now.” Green Bay is hopeful that Christine Michael, claimed off waivers from Seattle, will be ready to bolster a sagging running game with a full week of practice. Rodgers continues to put up solid numbers with 15 TD passes and three interceptions in his last five games.
ABOUT THE EAGLES (5-5 SU, 5-5 ATS, 5-5 O/U): It’s hardly a surprise that Wentz has been unable to sustain his hot start, given the dearth of playmakers at wide receiver and a spotty running game. Wentz threw seven touchdown passes against one interception in his first four games, but those numbers have changed with four scoring tosses and six picks in the last six contests. Wentz has thrown for more than 238 yards just once in his last seven games, with wideout Jordan Matthews his favorite target with 53 receptions and three touchdowns. Ryan Mathews rushed for a season-high 109 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Atlanta on Nov. 13, but he injured his knee in last week’s loss at Seattle and is not expected to play. Philadelphia has surrendered only 38 points in its four home games.
* Packers are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game.
* Eagles are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 Monday games.
* Over is 4-0 in Packers last 4 games overall.
* Over is 9-0 in Eagles last 9 games in Week 12.
* Under is 6-1 in the last 7 meetings.
COVERS CONSENSUS: The home favorite Philadelphia Eagles are picking up 58 percent of the point spread action and the Over is getting 76 percent of the Over/Under wagers. View full consensus data here.
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