A potential NFC Championship preview unfolds during the second-slate of games in NFL Week 5 as the Minnesota Vikings head to Philly to lock horns with the Eagles. It’s always exciting when two premier teams match-up this early in the season, and despite both of these teams currently possessing mediocre records – you just know both groups have immense talent and will bounce back.
It should also be fascinating watch these two quarterbacks duel one another, as both Carson Wentz and Kirk Cousins surely have more to offer. Both have been somewhat disappointing through the first four weeks of the regular season, and perhaps a showdown against one another will bring out the best in both talented play-callers.
This promises to be one of the best games of the week and despite some key injuries and omissions on both sides of the ball – it’ll certainly make for must-see TV this week. Continue reading on below the posted odds for a detailed breakdown and analysis, as well as a winning selection for this crucial NFC showdown.
Vikings vs. Eagles Betting Odds:
Minnesota Vikings +3 (+105)
@ Philadelphia Eagles -3 (-125)
Over 47 (-110)
Under 47 (-110)
Vikings vs. Eagles Pick:
Carson Wentz is slowly but surely regaining his form – the same form that made him one of the NFL’s elite quarterbacks just last season. And though he is likely to face a stiff test this week against Minnesota’s supposedly stout defense, they really haven’t been all that tough so far in 2018.
Yes folks, Minnesota was supposed to have the league’s top stop unit this season, but it hasn’t even come close to materializing. Both Josh Allen and a hurt Aaron Rodgers gashed this defensive group, and last week in Los Angeles they looked lost as Jared Goff routinely went up-and-down the field with the Vikings’ defense time after time. They are battling some injuries, but on the tactics side they struggle to do some basic things. Firstly, Minnesota cannot cover in space as their linebacking crew has been terrible shadowing opposing players. Look for Zach Ertz to take full advantage of this.
Down the field, look for Wentz to have options as well. Beyond Xavier Rhodes, the Vikes aren’t as deep in their secondary as once thought. Rhodes will likely shadow Alshon Jeffery, but there’s no reason Nelson Agholor can’t step up and have a big game. Making matters worse for Minny is the fact that their pass rush is also much weaker now with the continued absence of Everson Griffen. This should allow Wentz to have the time necessary to truly settle in and find his spots downfield. Expect Philly to become comfortable once again on the attack, and Minnesota to take another step back defensively.
Kirk Cousins needs a big outing, and he might just find it this week as the Eagles also have issues with their secondary. That said, Philly has a ton of talent defensively and probably boasts the best front-seven in football. They allow nothing on the ground in terms of a run game, and can pressure opposing QB’s like no other team in the sport. As a result, look for the Eagles to generate a ton of heat via Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham, as that duo should bully a porous Vikings’ O-Line. With Minnesota’s running backs, it looks like Dalvin Cook will be out, so the workload will fall to ageing back Latavius Murray. Don’t expect much from him, and if Cousins doesn’t have the necessary time and space from the pocket – it could be another long outing for the Vikings.
The Vikings enter this game a bad team, and it might need to get worse before it gets better. Their defense has major holes right now, and the Eagles stylistically are a tough match-up for them. Philly can do a ton of things that should give Minnesota trouble, and last week’s loss in Tennessee only has the Eagles even more charged up to return home and secure a big victory. There’s heavy juice on Eagles -3, but swallow it and take your winners to the window, because this could be a blowout on Sunday.
PICK = Eagles -3 (-125)