Minnesota Vikings (1-2-1) vs Philadelphia Eagles (2-2)
NFL: Sunday, October 7, 2018 at 4:25 pm ET (Lincoln Financial Field)
Line & Odds: Philadelphia Eagles -3
Free NFL Pick Minnesota Vikings vs Philadelphia Eagles
In their first matchup since the NFC Championship, the Minnesota Vikings travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles for a shot at redemption.
What was thought to be an elite defense at the start of the season, the Vikings have been abused and thrown around the past two weeks. Whether it was Josh Allen’s Bills and their 31st ranked offense or the high flying Rams’ with Jared Goff and Todd Gurley, Minnesota has struggled to keep their opponents out of the end zone. Their defense sits in the bottom half of the NFL in terms of yards given up and they’re allowing 27.5 points per game through four weeks. Enter Philadelphia, who’s offense has been mediocre even with Carson Wentz back at the helm but look to take advantage of the Vikings next. On the plus side, they’ve been able to stay in games thanks to their offense led by Kirk Cousins. Cousins is third in passing yards and tied for sixth in touchdowns through the air, while Adam Thielen ranks second in receiving to go along with Stefon Diggs being fourth in touchdowns. The run game has been an anomaly with Dalvin Cook banged up, but it might actually work in their favor to stay away from the run with the Eagles being the No. 1 defense against the run. Look for John DeFlippo’s game script a majority of the time. It might be another barn burner if the defense fails to live up to expectations once again.
On the other side of this matchup, Philadelphia seems to be facing contradicting problems. The Eagles have either won or lost by one score in each game so far and while the defense has limited their opponents for the most part, the offense has yet to click. However, Wentz looked much improved despite their overtime loss to the Titans last week throwing for 348 yards and two scores while committing zero turnovers. The return of Alshon Jeffrey seemed to be beneficial for a receiving core decimated by injuries and despite their offensive woes the running game surprisingly sits 11th in rush yards per game. In a highly anticipated matchup like this one, they’re going to need consistent play on both sides of the ball to keep from being under .500 in the first quarter of the season. The Eagles are a top-10 defense, but in their two losses opponents are averaging 26.5 points and 373 yards through the air so the offense and defense will need to get in sync to get a win in front of their home crowd.
Cover the Spread 365 Trends:
Minnesota is 1-5-1 ATS in its last 7 games
Minnesota is 1-3-1 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
Minnesota is 1-8 ATS in its last 9 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia
Philadelphia is 17-4 SU in its last 21 games
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Philadelphia’s last 7 games at home
Philadelphia is 8-1 ATS in its last 9 games when playing at home against Minnesota
Free NFL Pick Philadelphia Eagles vs Minnesota Vikings
Philadelphia dominated on one of the biggest stages the last time these two met up to the point where it was embarrassing. But there are plenty of differences this time around for me to think it will play out the same. Yes, the Vikings have cost themselves defensively so far, but Mike Zimmer has always been a coach that can rally the troops and turn things around. Not to mention, the offense has been stellar and Cousins covets two of the NFL’s better receivers. A healthier Cook should only balance the offense better. Nevertheless, I don’t think the outcome differs as Wentz seems to be regaining last year’s form, and a Philly defense that shuts down the run game well should be locked in on shutting down Cousins in the passing game. Vikings will cover, but Eagles are winning this one.