NFL Preseason Betting: Kelly’s Eagles Continues To Fight Through Adversity
Chip Kelly knew very well that the transition from the college game at Oregon to the NFL game with the Eagles in Philadelphia would be a difficult one. There wasn’t a single online sports betting expert that saw this coming. From losing Jeremy Maclin, Arrelious Benn, and Jason Phillips to torn ACL, to Riley Cooper’s ridiculous racist comments, it has been a rough start to the NFL life for Kelly. Now the Eagles will try to bounce back from a loss to the New England Patriots in their exhibition opener, with the Carolina Panthers in town this Thursday night.
Keep An Eye On: Eagles Quarterback Situation
The one thing that can make a tumultuous offseason go away is sports betting success, and Kelly’s chances to do just that are tied to his quarterbacks with Vick and Nick Foles competing for the starting job. Michael Vick got the start in last week’s game against the Patriots and impressed by completing 4-of-5 passes for 94 yards including a 47-yard touchdown pass to DeSean Jackson. Nick Foles completed 5-of-6 passes for just 43 yards, and while it seemed on the surface as if Vick had the much better performance of the two, it was Foles getting the first-team reps in practice early on this week. Kelly’s NFL debut is tied to his decision at quarterback and whether or not Vick or Foles can excel in the offense, which has all eyes on the quarterback situation heading in to the second exhibition game.
Watch The Progress Of: Cam Newton (Panthers); Matt Barkley (Eagles)
It may seem strange to talk about watching Newton’s progress in a preseason game after all that he has accomplished at the quarterback position through his first two NFL seasons, but he struggled as the coaching staff expanded the playbook a year ago and must improve in year three. Newton wasn’t awful in last week’s win over the Chicago Bears, but he completed just 3-of-6 passes and his touchdown pass to Brandon LaFell was overshadowed by throw in to double coverage that resulted in an interception – which Newton referred to as “disgusting”. Meanwhile, with all of the focus on Vick and Foles, rookie Matt Barkley had a strong NFL preseason debut last week completing 11-of-22 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown. Barkley won’t be in the mix this year, but his progress is worth keeping an eye on this preseason.
The online sportsbook odds have the Eagles favored to bounce back at home with a more complete performance, and the continued battle at the quarterback spot should add to the intensity level they play at. Newton grew up with Vick as one of his idols and will look to bounce back with a more complete performance, but he still won’t see too much time just yet, so the Eagles should be able to pull this one out.
Odds: Philadelphia – 2.5
Pick: Philadelphia – 2.5