Falcons at Eagles
Thursday, Sept. 6, 8:20 p.m.
There was a lot of speculation about the opponent for the season kickoff game. I didn't hear anyone mention the Falcons, the team that came closest to beating the Eagles in the playoffs. Welcome back to Lincoln Financial Field, Julio Jones and Matt Ryan. Tough opponent, but a big night for Philadelphia, and I still like the Eagles in this matchup.
For the third time in the last 14 seasons, the Eagles open against the Falcons. This meeting has a different flavor than the previous two – both losses. No. 1, the Eagles are the hosts. And No. 2, they're the defending Super Bowl champions. The big question is whether Carson Wentz will be ready by Week 1. Even if he isn't, Atlanta may have payback on its mind after narrowly losing in January's divisional playoff.
The home crowd will be electric celebrating the defending Super Bowl champions, which should give an advantage to a team that is 15-3 at home under Doug Pederson. I'm guessing Carson Wentz returns, although he might not be the same Wentz to open the season.
Another Philadelphia homecoming spoiled for Matt Ryan. Jim Schwartz's defense has held the Falcons to 25 points in back-to-back Eagles wins, including 10 in January's divisional round playoff game.