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Full 2017 Eagles 16-game predictions: Week-by-week scores and more

Full 2017 Eagles 16-game predictions: Week-by-week scores and more

Training camp is over. The 53-man roster is set. In only a matter of days, the Eagles will kick off the 2017 regular season. But why wait for the opener or four grueling months to find out what will happen? We’ve peered into the crystal ball while reciting “Joe Banner” three times in a row with the lights off, and the mysteries of the year ahead were revealed to us.

Be careful. Using these predictions in Vegas or on offshore sportsbooks could alter future events. For real. You could wind up seriously broke, so please don’t do that.

 

Week 1 @ Washington

DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon are gone. Su’a Cravens is retiring after one season. Even Nate Sudfeld thought he had a better shot on the Eagles practice squad than in Washington, where the starting quarterback will be a free agent in six months. Kirk Cousins’ departure seems inevitable, too. Cousins’ current team, on the other hand, isn’t going anywhere in 2017. Torrey Smith catches bombs (plural), but the real MVP is Sudfeld for sharing intimate details about Washington’s new-look offense.

WIN: Eagles 20, Washington 10

 

Week 2 @ Kansas City Chiefs

Doug Pederson vs. Andy Reid is second only to Anakin vs. Obi Wan in highly anticipated clashes between student and teacher. Carson Wentz and Alex Smith probably combine to drop back over 100 times in this one, though the game’s outcome appropriately hinges on a challenge flag. Reid miraculously wins one when replays determine Bennie Logan stopped LeGarrette Blount short of the sticks on fourth down, ending the Eagles’ comeback bid. That’s what Doug gets for calling a running play.

LOSS: Chiefs 23, Eagles 17

 

Week 3 vs New York Giants

The Eagles won 13 of the last 17 meetings with the Giants, including six of eight at Lincoln Financial Field, where Eli Manning is notoriously awful. Manning has completed 60.0 percent of his passes for 6.2 yards per attempt with 11 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in South Philly since 2009. He’s usually good for at least one comically bad turnover, too, so look for Fletcher Cox to come up with his first career interception and touchdown return in another romp.

WIN: Eagles 27, Giants 10

 

Week 4 @ Los Angeles Chargers

Do not adjust your television. The Eagles are playing an NFL game in a soccer stadium that holds fewer than 30,000 fans. That kind of environment isn’t likely to offer the Chargers much in the way of a home-field advantage. Caleb Sturgis should feel comfortable anyway. Sturgis’ brother, Nathan, played in the MLS – including parts of two seasons for the LA Galaxy – and can provide a detailed scouting report on the turf conditions. The jetlagged Eagles may need the edge.

WIN: Eagles 18, Chargers 16

 

Week 5 vs Arizona Cardinals

Will the Eagles go with Malcolm Jenkins, Patrick Robinson or Dexter McDougle in the slot this season? Do you think it’s really going to matter to Larry Fitzgerald? Fitzgerald averages 5.9 receptions for 99.0 yards and has 8 touchdowns in seven career games against the Birds, so no, he probably isn’t overly concerned. This is a homecoming of sorts for Temple product Haason Reddick as well, and the rookie linebacker absolutely terrorizes Carson Wentz, recording a sack and an interception.

LOSS: Cardinals 31, Eagles 28

 

Week 6 @ Carolina Panthers

With 11 interceptions over the past two seasons, 5-foot-11 Kurt Coleman is truly a remarkable story. Coleman is going to look decidedly unremarkable, however, when he’s trying to prevent 6-3 Alshon Jeffery from winning a jump ball 50 yards down the middle of the field. Coleman may have made a name for himself in Carolina, but after spending four seasons with the Eagles, everybody from these parts knows covering taller, athletic wide receivers deep is not one of his strengths.

WIN: Eagles 30, Panthers 19

 

Week 7 vs Washington

By this point, Cousins might be pressing, trying to right a sinking ship – the football team and his value across the league. That potentially bodes well for a ball hawk like Ronald Darby, who possesses both the speed to keep up Terrelle Pryor and the acumen to jump an unpolished route. Pryor is Washington’s only weapon on the outside now, and he’s no DeSean or Garcon. Darby comes up with two picks. Cousins’ days are numbered in the NFC East.

WIN: Eagles 33, Washington 17

 

Week 8 vs San Francisco 49ers

Reuben Foster fans aren’t going to be happy when the rookie linebacker almost single-handedly alters a game against the Eagles. Foster forces two fumbles with devastating hits over the middle, and registers a sack of Wentz for good measure. Passing on Foster looks even worse after 49ers running back Carlos Hyde plows right through Mychal Kendricks on his way into the end zone for the decisive score. Talk radio is ready for Howie Roseman’s resignation at the season’s midway point.

LOSS: 49ers 19, Eagles 11

 

Week 9 vs Denver Broncos

The Eagles are probably hoping Allen Barbre is in the lineup for the Broncos at this stage of the season. Barbre is almost an unintentional double agent. Sure, he’s serviceable, but once wave after wave of Cox and Tim Jernigan are coming at him, how will the 33-year-old journeyman hold up? Cox and Jernigan saw plenty of Barbre in practice and know his tendencies. Sounds like there could be a pathway to Trevor Siemian, or whoever’s under center in Denver.

WIN: Eagles 13, Broncos 6

 

Week 10 BYE

The Eagles have amassed a 6-3 record so far, for those of you who aren’t keeping score at home.

 

Week 11 @ Dallas Cowboys

Unfortunately for the Eagles, most Cowboys players will be back from their suspensions – though not all, and only provided more don’t break the law or take drugs. That’s clearly a lot to ask of this crew. Furthermore, nobody knows what will become of Ezekiel Elliott, so for all we know, the reigning NFL rushing champion’s inevitable suspension starts this week. More likely, the court case will drag on, much like how Elliott will drag Rodney McLeod across the goal line.

LOSS: Cowboys 40, Eagles 31

 

Week 12 vs Chicago Bears

Mark Sanchez resurfaces in Chicago, where the Bears have already exhausted their other quarterback options. That’s music to the Eagles’ ears. Sanchez’s arm is no match for Darby’s speed, while Sanchez’s penchant for hilarious decision making is no match for Jordan Hicks’ ability to be in the right place at the right time. Think Jeffery is missing any of this? Nah. He makes his former squad pay with two acrobatic touchdown grabs that can go straight to the highlight reel.

WIN: Eagles 35, Bears 13

 

Week 13 @ Seattle Seahawks

Eagles castoffs Marcus Smith and Matt Tobin are in Seattle now, but let’s not pretend either one is going to have anything meaningful to do with the outcome of this contest. More likely, the always stout Seahawks defense, insanely loud home crowd and nearly 3,000-mile flight will take full responsibility here. You simply don’t pick the away team to win at CenturyLink Field under any circumstances, not even for a highly imaginative blog post. That’s just inviting ridicule and scorn.

LOSS: Seahawks 24, Eagles 9

 

Week 14 @ Los Angeles Rams

Jared Goff enjoyed a shockingly efficient preseason, offering the Rams organization some hope passing on Wentz in the same draft wasn’t as ridiculous as it looked. Granted, this isn’t exactly Peyton Manning vs. Ryan Leaf, though it might’ve felt that way at times last season. Preseason aside, Wentz still appears to be well ahead of the curve compared to his Class of ’16 counterpart. Since the Eagles never bothered returning home from Seattle, Wentz and company should be well rested.

WIN: Eagles 26, Rams 21

 

Week 15 @ New York Giants

Manning is still smarting from the last time Brandon Graham and Derek Barnett put a licking on him. He learned, and is getting the ball out quickly, into the hands of Odell Beckham. Jenkins and Jalen Mills try to get physical with Beckham, but he’s simply in the zone, catching everything that comes his way. The Eagles just got back from a long trip on the west coast, and simply don’t have the legs to keep up in this one.

LOSS: Giants 21, Eagles 14

 

Week 16 vs Oakland Raiders

By now, Zach Ertz is on his usual December tear, and it just so happens Oakland doesn’t have anybody who can cover a tight end. Ertz goes off for double-digit catches and nearly 200 yards, making short work of a team that looks plain uninterested. After all, the game is being played on Christmas night, and the Raiders are on the opposite end of the country. Darren Sproles puts the cherry on top, returning a punt for a late touchdown.

WIN: Eagles 33, Raiders 24

 

Week 17 vs Dallas Cowboys

The Eagles enter the week with a 9-6 record. That probably puts them in playoff contention, possibly vying for the NFC East championship. Only Dallas stands in their way now. Elliott or no Elliott, the Cowboys aren’t as good as they were last year. The offensive line had 17 weeks to jell, but simply isn’t as good after the changes at left guard and right tackle, while the secondary is an absolute mess. Nolan Carroll falls down a couple times in coverage, allowing long touchdowns to Jeffery and Mack Hollins.

WIN: Eagles 38, Cowboys 20

 

Whether a 10-6 record means division title, playoffs, or narrowly missing the postseason is tough to say. It’s also not difficult to envision the Eagles losing one more and going 9-7 instead, which would really complicate the playoff picture. That being said, if the schedule plays out anything at all like this, the Eagles should be in the mix, regardless of the competition. Either way, there hasn’t been this much enthusiasm around here during the holidays in quite some time.

Philly won weird Super Bowl bet with Brockton, Massachusetts

kenney-rocky.jpg
Mayors of Philly/Brockton

Philly won weird Super Bowl bet with Brockton, Massachusetts

Mayor Jim Kenney doesn't seem to fully understand the concept of a sports wager.

The general rule I like to follow: if you win a bet, you GET SOMETHING OF VALUE in return.

Now, the Mayor of Philadelphia won a bet with the city of Brockton, Massachusetts, and he has to SEND THEM STUFF.

Makes no sense.

Anyway, I guess the city of Brockton now has to dress their Rocky Marciano statue up in Eagles gear. Lulz. So Mr. Kenney is shipping them some goods. I hope the people of New England had to pay for it.

As Eagles fans know all too well, the official Eagles gear is not cheap.

Did the Sixers Really Win That Game II: The Portis vs. The Process

Did the Sixers Really Win That Game II: The Portis vs. The Process

Geez, if you only watched the ends of the last two Philadelphia 76ers games, you'd think they were owed years' worth of good karma from getting perpetually screwed in the fourth quarter or something. That's right, the basketball gods may have finally approved the Sixers' line of credit: One game (and eight days) after Brett Brown's squad came back from 20-plus down to squeak one past the Miami Heat, the team again pulled out a miracle last night in Chicago, coming from five down in the final minute against the Bulls to win 116-115. 

And boy, did this one feel like a loss, too. After surging out to a 25-7 lead in the first, the Sixers quickly relinquished the majority of their lead to the Bulls, who pulled even in the third and kept the Sixers from ever running away with it. They hit an absurd 18 threes, tying a season high, and two role players posted career highs: starting wing David Nwaba (21 points on 9-14 shooting) and bench forward Bobby Portis (38 points on 15-26 shooting, including a stupefying 6-9 from three). 

Meanwhile, the Sixers went cold down the stretch; Robert Covington missed a clean look at a three, Ben Simmons missed two of two from the line, Joel Embiid dribbled the ball off his foot. When Zach LaVine hit a tough pull-up three to put Chicago up five with a minute to go, and then Cov missed an open baseline two, it almost felt a merciful end to our suffering. 

But somehow, that wasn't it. Portis shot a long two a little too quickly at the other end and missed, and Simmons put back his own miss at the other end for a quick two to cut it to three. LaVine bricked a tough jumper with 17 to go, and J.J. got fouled at the other end to prevent a possible tying three. He made both, and then good ball denial on the ensuing Chicago inbounds led to an Embiid steal and pass to Simmons, who got fouled. 

After going just 4-9 from the line to that point, Simmons calmly nailed both his free throws to put Philly up one. Embiid stonewalled a Portis attempt near the basket at the other end with seconds to go, Denzel Valentine's putback attempt missed, and the game was over, with the Philly outscoring Chicago 6-0 in the final minute to seal the W. 

It was beautiful, man. There aren't going to be many games in this life where you give up 18 threes, allow two opposing players to go for career highs, miss 14 free throws and go down five with 60 seconds to go and still somehow manage to win the damn thing. 

But there also aren't gonna be many teams in this life with a one-two punch as potent as Simmons and Embiid. The latter picked up where he left off at the All-Star Game, scoring 30 (on 11-17 shooting, including 3-3 from deep) with 13 boards, five assists, three steals and two blocks -- just a few box score tallies away from his first 5x5 game. And the former picked up where he left off before the All-Star Game, scoring a career-high 32 (13-18 shooting) to go with seven boards, 11 assists a steal and a block. And maybe most impressive of all? The two had just three turnovers between them in 69 combined minutes. 

Ben and Jo were nothing less than dominant on offense all night. They couldn't turn the faucet off on the Bulls defensively for most of the game -- though aside from a couple slow-ish rotations in the first half, I'm not even sure they played all that badly, rather just paying the three-point defense regression to the mean that Liberty Ballers writer Sean O'Connor had long been warning fans about

But in any event, Embiid finally got the best of Portis in the final minutes, shutting him down on a couple crucial possessions (including the final one), and he made the play of the night on that inbounds steal. When you have two transcendent talents -- as Embiid and Simmons undoubtedly have proven they are, even this early in their careers -- you win a lot of games you probably shouldn't, and gravity was finally on the Sixers' side tonight. 

Of course, the Sixers might not've needed such combined brilliance from their two best players if their supporting cast was able to pick up the slack a little. But no one else was really cooking for Philly last night, and as is becoming a distressingly frequent occurrence this season, Covington hit a couple shots early and then went flat for the rest of the game. Even on the Bulls broadcast, they were talking about how Cov was gonna have to hit shots in the playoffs for the Sixers to have a chance, and they're probably right: We need Rock's defense and smarts out there, but if he's gonna routinely brick open looks in big moments, he's gonna be a liability -- and he's now 6 of his last 29 from deep. 

But that's a concern for another day -- one that seems more and more likely to actually be upcoming at this point. In the meantime, Philly is 31-25, having won six in a row, and with a creampuff game coming up next at home against Orlando, before a three-game roadie against East playoff teams (Washington, Miami and Cleveland) that represents the only really tough swing remaining on the Sixers' schedule. The playoffs seem increasingly probable, and with Simmons and Embiid playing at this level, just about anything seems possible if we get there. Pity the foolish rival execs who still don't trust the process at this point.