Saturday, December 27, 2014

Eagles-Falcons picks

JEFF MCLANE Season record: 1-0.

Eagles-Falcons picks

Michael Vick faces his former team as the Eagles and Falcons square off in Atlanta in Week 2. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)
Michael Vick faces his former team as the Eagles and Falcons square off in Atlanta in Week 2. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)

JEFF MCLANE
Season record: 1-0.

You heard it from every Eagles player and coach: Last week's win over the Rams was not the way you draw it up. Michael Vick was inaccurate and he ran too often out of blitzes, receivers dropped several balls and clock management in the first half was woeful. On defense, the run stoppers were gutted and in the air superstar acquisitions Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie didn't have the hottest debuts. So that means the Eagles have only one way to go and that is up, right? Wrong. Vick will have his moments in his return to Atlanta, and so, too, will the offense. But the Falcons will get their yards on the ground against the Eagles D, enough so that Falcons receivers will have space to roam free for quarterback Matt Ryan. It's a close one, but the Falcons win, 27-24.

What goes right:The Eagles' heavily-criticized linebackers don't play as bad as forecast.

What goes wrong: The offensive line reminds everyone why they worried about the unit in the first place.

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How will the fans at the Georgia Dome react to Michael Vicks' return on Sunday night?
More cheers than boos
 
  173 (65.3%)
More boos than cheers
 
  38 (14.3%)
Cheers and boos evenly split
 
  54 (20.4%)
Total votes = 265

JONATHAN TAMARI
Season record: 1-0.

Everything we saw last week says the Eagles should beat the Falcons, who looked vulnerable to the pass rush and gave up 30 to the Bears. Vick, DeSean Jackson, LeSean McCoy on a fast track ... offensive line with another week together ... but something tells me that the season just doesn't start so smoothly for this group. The Falcons have to have this game. They get it in a shootout. Falcons, 38-35.

What goes right: The Eagles offense keeps humming. Vick and McCoy burn it up on the Falcons' turf, and Jeremy Maclin gets more involved, too.

What goes wrong: The pass rush doesn't have quite the feast it did last week. One of the rotation ends, Darryl Tapp, is probably out, the Falcons should be better prepared with a closer look at the D and Atlanta will be able stick with the run longer than the Rams did.

Check out Sunday's Inquirer and online at philly.com for a full Eagles-Falcons preview.

About this blog
Birds' Eye View is the Inquirer's blog covering all things Philadelphia Eagles and the NFL.

Jeff McLane Inquirer Staff Writer
Zach Berman Inquirer Staff Writer
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