Thursday, December 18, 2014

Eagles-Jets predictions, matchups

Here is our weekly look at the Eagles game with the Jets coming to town this afternoon:

Eagles-Jets predictions, matchups

Here is our weekly look at the Eagles game with the Jets coming to town this afternoon:

LES BOWEN

I KINDA FEEL LIKE I have to pick the Eagles here, if for no other reason than that I was the guy arguing against the "lose for a better draft position" stance just a few days ago.

So, I am picking a team to win for the second week in a row, a team that hasn't won 2 weeks in a row all season. (Remember, there was a bye between the Redskins and Cowboys wins.) But what the heck. I think the Jets are much like the Eagles, in the fact that they were touted in the preseason far beyond the level they've played to. Yes, they've now won three in a row - over the Bills, Redskins and Chiefs.

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The Eagles are 8-0 all-time against the Jets, which doesn't mean much because a lot of those games were played before any of the current combatants were in the NFL. The Eagles are 1-5 at home, which probably does mean something. I'm choosing to believe it means they are due.

I think we'll see a sharper, better Michael Vick this week. If the Giants and Cowboys have won by the time the Eagles take the field, eliminating all reasonable playoff hope, that could change the dynamic, but I don't think many players in this locker room really think they're going to the playoffs anyway. I like LeSean McCoy in this game. I am not a big Mark Sanchez guy. A win here, with either a Giants or Cowboys loss, would make that Christmas Eve game in Dallas meaningful. Why not?

Prediction: Eagles 20-16.

VEGAS VIC

How about a Christmas miracle? That's what the Birds need to get back to the playoffs for a fourth straight year. Having Michael Vick back under center always changes the complexion of a game, but it was the "D" that turned in an heroic performance Sunday. The stop-unit allowed a season-low 204 yards, 95 passing, with three turnovers and nine sacks. And if you're wondering about the Jets winning three in a row and four of six, don't. Those four wins came against, you guessed it, the cupcakery of the NFL. Two wins against Buffalo (5-8), a win against Washington (4-9) and a win against Kansas City (5-8). The New Yorkers are also 0-8 lifetime against the Eagles, so we're rocking Midnight Green.

Prediction: Eagles, 26-21

Also:

Ed Barkowitz: Jets, 21-16

Bill Conlin: Eagles, 24-20

Paul Domowitch: Jets, 21-20

Marcus Hayes: Eagles, 23-17

John Smallwood: Jets, 27-24

KEY MATCHUPS

1. Eagles LDE Jason Babin vs. Jets RT Wayne Hunter. Hunter is the weakest link in an otherwise solid Jets line. Babin has 15 sacks, including three last week vs. Dolphins. Advantage: Eagles

2. Eagles MLB Jamar Chaney vs. Jets RB Shonn Greene. Greene is averaging 4.8 yards per carry over the last seven games. Chaney and the Eagles have been inconsistent vs. the run. Advantage: Jets

3. Eagles WR DeSean Jackson vs. Jets CB Darrelle Revis. Jackson is one of the league's most dangerous vertical threats, but Revis is the league's best cover corner and likely will force Mike Vick to look elsewhere. Advantage: Jets

**

To see Les Bowen's video preview of today's game, click here.

About this blog
Eagletarian is your home for comprehensive coverage of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Les Bowen Daily News Staff Writer
Paul Domowitch Daily News NFL Columnist
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