Monday, August 27, 2012

New York Jets vs Philadelphia Eagles: PHI -4 (5Dimes)

Coaches

Usually when you look at preseason matchups, coaching records become very important.  Most of the time it is an overall reflection of how coaches go about the exhibition season.  Due to this, many people have blindly faded Andy Reid over the last couple of seasons, but they've also lost a lot of money doing so.

It's always important to consider the context of each season and each matchup before blindly following a trend.  Reid is not only undefeated this preseason, but he's won 5 straight NFLX games and 6 of his last 7.  A lot of this is due to increased depth throughout the roster - especially at QB.

I'm glad to say I've been on the winning side of most of those recent victories and I look for another one on Thursday.  Last season, Reid led the Eagles to a 24-14 win in Week 4 against the same Jets.

Markets

Given the performance of Nick Foles this preaseason, combined with the ineptitude of the Jets offense, money came flying in on Philly when lines were posted on Monday.  Now that we know the QB rotation, cooler heads have prevailed and we've seen buy back on the Jets.  The current line has settled in at -4.

Quarterbacks

Reid has told the media that Nick Foles will start and play the first quarter.  I don't need to spit out his stats this preseason because everyone knows he's been fantastic as a rookie.  Now that's not to say it will automatically continue, but he's riding hot right now and should be ok on Thursday since he won't be facing the Jets starting defense.

Trent Edwards will play the final three quarters which is actually a good thing for us.  So far this preseason he's 32 of 48 for 292 yards, two touchdowns, and zero interceptions.  Pretty good stats, but he's been largely overshadowed by Vick's injuries and Foles rise up the depth chart.

Meanwhile, there is no Mark Sanchez or Tim Tebow for the Jets.  That could actually be a bad thing given how poorly they have played, but Greg McElroy will get the start and play most, if not all, of the game for New York.  He did pretty well in the preseason last year, but this year's he's barely played at all.  Normally you would like his chances against backups, but the Eagles defense has quite a bit of quality depth so it's not going to be a cakewalk. 

Pick

Andy Reid knows how to coach quarterbacks and he's fortunate to have quality depth this year.  Trent Edwards is auditioning for a job somewhere else and he'll want to finish things up on a positive note.  Rex Ryan and Tony Sparano aren't showing anybody anything this preseason, including their wild cart formations.  By resting both Sanchez and Tebow, it's clear they are working hard on the Buffalo Bills, not the Philadelphia Eagles.

NFL Pick: PHI -4.

The rest of my Week 4 predictions are here, or you can find all my 2012 predictions on the home page main menu.