Sunday, December 21, 2014

Is anyone picking the Eagles?

Who are the national media picking in today's Eagles-Packers matchup? Here's a roundup of predictions.

Is anyone picking the Eagles?

Aaron Rodgers leads the Packers into the Linc to face Kevin Kolb and the Eagles today. (Jeffrey Phelps / Yong Kim / AP and Staff photos)
Aaron Rodgers leads the Packers into the Linc to face Kevin Kolb and the Eagles today. (Jeffrey Phelps / Yong Kim / AP and Staff photos)

Football season is officially here. Join me at 4:15 for a live Eagles-Packers chat. I'll be providing updates and commentary straight from the Linc.

In the meantime, here's a look at who the national media are picking in today's matchup.

SI.com's Peter King likes the Packers, 30-16:

They last met on opening day 2007, and it was McNabb vs. Favre that day. Now it's Kolb-Rodgers, of course, and as on that day, the Packers QB is more experienced and, as I see it, the winner (Sept. 9, 2007: Pack 16, Eagles 13.) Look for Packers' defensive coordinator Dom Capers to throw lots of looks at Kolb in his opener as the Eagles' quarterback, and look for some of those rushes to hit home.

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Peter Schrager of FoxSports.com goes with Green Bay, 34-24:

Any time I see Green Bay at Philadelphia, I think of 4th-and-26. Seven years since that famous 2003 divisional round fourth-down conversion, Donovan McNabb is a Redskin, Brett Favre is a Viking, and Freddie Mitchell is ... well, does anyone know where Freddie Mitchell is? Hello? Anyone? The fact is, a lot has changed since that fateful day. Now it’s Kolb vs. Rodgers. I’ll give Round One of this budding rivalry to the guy everyone’s picking as their 2010 NFL MVP, Mr. Rodgers. America, meet Jermichael Finley. He's going to go bonkers.

Four of five CBSSports.com experts like the Packers to cover the 3-point spread. Pete Prisco, however, likes the Eagles to pull out a 34-30 win:

This is a good game to open for both teams. The Packers looked great in the preseason, but opening at Philadelphia is never easy. The Eagles will give Aaron Rodgers a ton of different looks. Kevin Kolb makes his first start as the Starter. That can be tough. But he will make some throws against a Green Bay defense that still has to prove to me they are better than that team that got rocked by Arizona in the playoffs. Eagles slow down the Packers bandwagon.

Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com has the Packers taking home a 38-21 victory:

Eagles coach Andy Reid surely would have preferred to launch the post-Donovan McNabb era with a game against a slightly less formidable opponent. In last year's home opener, Kevin Kolb got his first career start against a potent Saints team that came to Philly and scored nearly "fitty". Though the Eagles ultimately could turn it around and get to the playoffs like they did last year, it could be another long day for Reid and company against one of the best teams in the conference.

Gregg Rosenthal of NBCSports.com also goes with the Packers in a 34-31 win:

I just picked the Packers to win the Super Bowl, yet I'm not remotely confident they will win this game. Eagles should remain a very tough out at home, and Andy Reid hasn't suddenly lost his playcalling ability because of a slow preseason. My big question: Philly's pass rush. Will Brandon Graham and a rebuilt linebacker group make a difference? Since "stay away" isn't an option to pick here, I'll say no.

Three of four experts on ESPN's Sunday Countdown pick the Packers. Analyst and ex-Eagle Cris Carter goes with the Birds.

Six of eight ESPN.com experts pick the Packers. Ex-Eagle Eric Allen and Adam Schefter go with the Birds.

Dave Goldberg of Fanhouse has the Packers, 31-20:

Like the Jets, the Packers are a popular pick. But at least they're shutting up about it. This game pits Aaron Rodgers, a preseason MVP candidate against Kevin Kolb, who has to fill Donovan McNabb's spot. He's not ready yet.

And finally, earlier this week, I wrote about how 98 percent of the betting public liked the Packers to cover the 3-point spread, according to sportsbook.com. The numbers have shifted slightly as of Sunday morning. Now, 82 percent of the money is on the Packers, and 18 percent is backing the Eagles.


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Sheil Kapadia Philly.com
About this blog
Sheil Kapadia is in his fifth season writing about the Eagles and the NFL for philly.com. His earliest memories as a sports fan include several trips to Veterans Stadium with his Dad. He's not a beat writer or an Insider, but is here to discuss the NFL 365 days a year. E-mail him at skapadia@philly.com or by clicking here

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