In what is probably the most anticipated preseason game, the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots will meet in the second week of the NFL Preseason. Anticipated and the preseason used in the same sentence is an oxymoron, but people will see the Eagles and Patriots and immediately become interested. You have to keep in mind that this is only a preseason game, though. Don’t get too excited, this isn’t a Super Bowl rematch or anything.
The stakes are a little smaller and it should be treated as just another practice game. It does mean that we are getting closer to the start of regular season. Week 2 of the preseason gives the starters an extra series or two on the field, but next week is when the dress rehearsal for teams happen. Week 3 of the preseason is the most interesting of the preseason games, as starters usually get a full half of action before giving way to the backups. The third-string typically takes care of mop-up duty.
If there is anything to make this game interesting is that Tom Brady stated he expects to be playing this week. The last time we seen Brady against the Eagles, he was getting rushed in the backfield and forced an errant throw on 4th down. The Eagles didn’t allow Brady to work his magic down the field and boggled him down right away.
It remains to be seen how long he will be playing in this preseason contest, but don’t expect him to go longer than a quarter. The same goes for Nick Foles, who will get the start in this one. Carson Wentz continues to work to get back on the field. He will miss the entire preseason, while his status for Week 1 is in doubt. Foles has certainly proven that he can handle the starting duties for the Eagles, though. He isn’t going to want to be a backup even when Wentz returns to the lineup. The Eagles are coming off a 31-14 loss against the Steelers in Week 1 of the preseason, while the Patriots defeated the Redskins, 26-17, in Foxborough. Head below for our free Eagles vs. Patriots pick for Week 2 of the NFL Preseason.
Philadelphia Eagles vs. New England Patriots NFL Preseason Betting Odds:
vs. Patriots -3.5(-110)
Betting odds provided by Sportsbetting.ag
Eagles vs. Patriots Pick:
No one on the Patriots is going to give this game much thought. If you’re expecting them to want to get revenge on the Eagles, you will be sadly mistaken. This is still a game to evaluate talent and help coaches to acquire talent and make cuts. Bill Belichick more than anyone isn’t treating this game like it’s important. The preseason is an important juncture for guys trying to make the team, like Danny Etling. Etling has practice squad material written all over him. Reports out of New England indicate that the rookie has been spending extra time going over the playbook, and putting in extra work at practice to get the playbook down.
Belichick eats that kind of stuff up. Hard workers and players that show dedication to improve catch his eye. At the end of the day, Etling is limited by his talent level, though. He doesn’t have a strong enough arm to catch on the active roster, but he could stick around on the practice squad to develop. Etling went 2-of-5 with 21 yards in his debut last week.
Hoyer got the brunt of the work against the Redskins. He went 16-of-23 with 144 yards. Undrafted rookie, Ralph Webb, led the way with 2 touchdowns and 46 yards rushing. Webb is catching attention as Sonny Michel continues to sit out. The running back position is deep for the Patriots, but they’re going to find it difficult to keep him off the active roster if he keeps it rolling. He has also been impressive in training camp practices. Along with Webb, Jeremy Hill led in rushing against the ‘Skins with 51 yards on 11 touches.
Hoyer will once again see the most work in this one at quarterback for the Patriots. Etling will likely see some more work this week, though. He still doesn’t have a full grasp on the playbook, though, so don’t expect anything too complicated for him. Look for another basic outing for Etling. For the Eagles, they will go with Nate Sudfeld after Foles.
Sudfeld is a developmental piece who was drafted in the 6th round out of Indiana in the 2016 draft. He went 10-of-14 with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions against the Steelers last week. Sudfeld has shown flashes of competency in moments, but still doesn’t look like a guy ready for regular season action. This is third full season in the NFL, so it’s time he either shows something or his future turns to doubt. If anything, he could have a career as a decent practice squad filler. In other words, if Foles gets injured, the Eagles could suddenly be in trouble without Wentz or Foles.
Foles will likely play a quarter or so, and then Joe Callahan will follow after Sudfeld gets likely two quarterbacks of action in. Christian Hackenberg has looked bad in practice, so he might only get a series or two. While people will be looking for fireworks in this Super Bowl “rematch”, I think this one will look like ugly football in the second-half. I’d go with the UNDER if you want some football to bet on Thursday. It looks like a 24-13 or 21-17 final.