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Beat of the East: Week 9 Preview with Three Up, Three Down

It’s Eagles vs. Giants week! It doesn’t have the same ring to it as Eagles-Cowboys, but it’ll be another intense divisional matchup again for the Eagles this Sunday. Last time out on the Beat of the East, we reviewed the Week 8 games. Now, we’re onto Week 9. I hit 1-0-1 on winners (7-5-1 overall) and 1-1 against the spread (6-7 overall) last week. It’s been a rough few weeks after a hot start to the season. It’s time to rebound with a nice 2-0 this week. Next week, we’re back to three games to really get rolling.

Let’s hit it!

Philadelphia at New York Giants (-2.5)

I think that the Eagles showed last week in Dallas, even though they collapsed in the fourth quarter, that they’re a legitimate team that can contend for a playoff spot. Despite sharing the same record, I don’t see the Giants in the same light. Both the Birds and G-Men are top ten in scoring defense. But in points per game, the Eagles are tenth and the Giants are dismal 26th. While I don’t know exactly how the Eagles are going to stop Odell Beckham, I believe that at this point Eli Manning is Beckham’s biggest issue. Because of that I love the Eagles in this one. I think they cover, I think they win outright, and I think they do it comfortably.

Philadelphia 27, New York 17.

If betting were legal: Take Philadelphia plus the points.


Dallas (-7) at Cleveland

I can’t understand why this line isn’t higher to be honest. Dallas is seventh in both scoring offense and scoring defense. Cleveland is 25th and 30th respectively. Here’s where it gets extra bad for the Browns. Cleveland is second worst against the run and Ezekiel Elliott is coming to town. On top of that, if you weren’t aware Dak Prescott can move a little bit too. I think Cleveland is outmanned, outgunned, outclassed and has no business even thinking about being in this game. The Browns, surprise, have an unsettled quarterback situation as they return to Cody Kessler this week. Kessler had his best game as a pro in his last full game, throwing for over 330 yards to go with a pair of TDs and zero interceptions. It probably makes sense for Cleveland to want to get a look at the kid to see if he’s a viable option going forward, but this game isn’t the kind of game I’d want to subject him to. Dallas should absolutely run this team off the field.

Dallas 34, Cleveland 20.

If betting were legal: Take Dallas laying the points.


Each week I’m going to take a look at three of the NFC East individuals that are flying high, and three that have come crashing to Earth a bit recently.

Three Up:

  1. Ezekiel Elliott, Running Back, Dallas

Elliott continues to shine; another 130 plus all-purpose yard day against the Eagles made it five straight for him. That doesn’t include the 60 plus yard jaunt he had that was called back for a pretty ticky-tack holding call (not that I was complaining as a Birds fan). The only thing that could possibly derail this kid is the possibility of NFL sanctions for the domestic violence accusations that came out around draft time. Those charges were dismissed, but word is the NFL is still looking into things. On the field I’m not sure that anyone can stop him.

  1. Dez Bryant, Wide Receiver, Dallas

Bryant made a huge difference against the Eagles. Not only did he a catch the game-tying touchdown, he also highlighted the biggest difference between Prescott and Wentz. On that play Prescott had the luxury of throwing the ball up and letting his guy try to come down with it. Wentz can’t trust his guys to do that. Bryant went over 100 yards to go along with four catches and a touchdown. Not a bad return after a long absence.

  1. Kirk Cousins, Quarterback, Washington

The Redskins have failed to win in each of their last two games going 0-1-1 in the process. But Cousins hasn’t been the reason. His last two games have seen him average over 70% completions for just a shade over 375 per game. He’s also thrown three touchdowns against one interception in that span. I covered earlier this week that Cousins is flying under the radar and likely about to get really hot. That could be bad news for the NFC East.


Three Down:

  1. Josh Norman, Cornerback, Washington

Norman likely wasn’t 100% against Cincinnati and it showed in his play. Not only did Bengals top wide receiver A.J. Green rattle off nine catches for 121 yards, he also drew a whopping FIVE flags on Norman for penalties. Norman is one of the top corners in the game, but he didn’t play like it last Sunday. He and the rest of his team (aside from Cousins) can use the week off for the bye week this week.

  1. DeSean Jackson, Wide Receiver, Washington

Jackson actually looked like he might have himself a game last week, until he got hit in the head on a dirty shot. I thought he was likely concussed, but it was reported as a head contusion. Regardless, it was yet another bad break in a season full of bad outings for the former Eagle.

  1. Dustin Hopkins, Kicker, Washington

Icing the kicker has been around for a long while. I suppose it occasionally works, but you seldom see it work on an absolute chip shot. That is until Hopkins shanked away what should have been a Redskins victory with less than three minutes remaining in overtime in London. After drilling the 34 yard attempt the first time before the timeout was called Hopkins followed it up with more slice than my meager golf game. Before Redskins PR cut off an on-field interview, Hopkins managed to utter, “First of all, I’m just disgusted that that happened for my guys.” Believe me Dustin, they’re probably more disgusted than you are.


Well folks, that’s it for this week. Don’t forget to check out all the other great content here at the site. Our writers are second to none. I’ll see you next week with a review of all the week 9 action in the NFC East, thanks for reading. Want to discuss the column or football in general? Find me on twitter (@faux_philly). Thanks for reading and have a great weekend of great football!

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