Two teams all but eliminated from playoff contention kick off Week 13 NFL action when the disappointing Philadelphia Eagles travel to the league’s loudest stadium, and take on the Seattle Seahawks. In Seattle, nothing much was expected out of them this season, and rightfully so when Tarvaris Jackson is your decision at quarterback. They’ve been inconsistent all season long and will not get the chance to replicate last year’s dream season when they miraculously advance to the second round of the playoffs, despite boasting a losing record. Top wide-out Sidney Rice will be out for the remainder of the season, and will need the emerging Doug Baldwin to step up in his absence.
For the Eagles they have simply fallen flat, failing to live up to the massive heap of expectations that was bestowed on this squad deemed the ‘Dream Team’ by quarterback Vince Young in the pre-season. Philadelphia already has endured more losses than last season’s team, and are proof that talent alone does not win football games. They enter Week 13 a depleted, and embarrassed squad wondering how their season has slipped away from them. Philadelphia enters this game with big injuries to key players. Starting QB Mike Vick will again sit out due to his injured ribs, as will top-receiver Jeremy Maclin, and key corner Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Star running back LeSean McCoy enters as questionable, but is expected to play through a toe injury, while the Eagles better hope Nnamdi Asomugha returns, as his replacement from last week, Brandon Hughes, was badly exposed. Asomugha remains a game-time decision.
Eagles vs. Seahawks Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Philadelphia Eagles -3.0 (-110)
@ Seattle Seahawks +3.0 (-110)
Over 43 (-110)
Under 43 (-110)
Eagles vs. Seahawks Pick:
It will be vastly intriguing to see the mindset of the Eagles team which enters Seattle on Thursday night. By all account, injuries will have ravaged the squad, and they know their season is virtually over. Will they pack it in and ride out the remaining games? Or now that the pressure is off, will they rise to the occasion, proving to pundits the deep talent and skill they allegedly possess? I’ll go with the former as this is a Philadelphia team that hasn’t once this season responded well to adversity, and lacks resilience.
Seattle must be baffled by their inconsistencies. After huge wins against the Giants and Ravens, this is a team that has lost to both Cleveland, and the Redskins in disappointing fashion last week. Jackson has been decent at quarterback for Seattle, but needs to limit his turnovers in this one. Not having to face Rodgers-Cromartie, and potentially Asomugha would definitely help him out.
Philadelphia was dismantled by Tom Brady and the Pats attack last week, and though the Seahawks are 30th in the league in offense, don’t be surprised to see this Eagles defense struggle again. Seattle has a heavy run-attack, and the way Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch has been running the ball of late, the Eagles will struggle stopping the former Bills tailback. Lynch is averaging an NFL-best 110.8 rushing yards in four November games, and should build on those figures Thursday evening against a Philadelphia squad with an exploitable front-seven that struggles against a power rusher.
Look for Seattle to wear down an Eagles team going through a very trying season. A couple early scores should break the will of this fragile Philadelphia squad. The Eagles are aware that changes are afoot after such a disappointing season, and regardless of all the perceived talent this team possesses, they lack the character and cohesion to enter a hostile atmosphere and pull out a victory. As has been customary for Philadelphia this season, they’ve already added bulletin-board fodder for the opposition as Eagles defensive tackle Trevor Lewis has already stated they’ll “blow out” Seattle. If the game were merely played on paper, sure, but it’s not and expect Seattle to use this as motivation en route to a disciplined victory in front of their raucous home-town crowd.