NFL Wild Card Betting Preview and Picks: Seattle Seahawks at Philadelphia Eagles
The fourth and final game of Wild Card Weekend in the opening round of the NFL Playoffs sees the Philadelphia Eagles host the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, January 5, 2020. Let’s get into the odds, a betting preview, and some of our best bets for this matchup.
Seattle Seahawks (-1.5) at Philadelphia Eagles
Over/Under: 45.5 points
Sunday, January 5, 2020, at 4:40 p.m. ET
Lincoln Financial Field
The Seattle Seahawks were literally an inch or two away from defeating the San Francisco 49ers in the final week of the regular season, which would have given them a home playoff game this weekend. Instead, they now have to travel across the country to face off against a Philadelphia Eagles team that, just like last season, won four straight games to get themselves into the NFL Playoffs. Let’s break down this final matchup of Wild Card Weekend.
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Eagles Peaking at the Right Time
All hope seemed to be lost in Philadelphia after their team suffered an embarrassing loss in Miami to the Dolphins in Week 13, where they were double-digit road favorites. That dropped them to a record of 5-7, but they were able to reel off four straight wins over their putrid NFC East rivals in order to win the division at 9-7. The Eagles offense seems to be finally be hitting its stride, as they ended the season by scoring 31, 23, 37, 17, and 34 points in their games.
Nelson Agholor has already been ruled out for the game, but key offensive players Miles Sanders, Zach Ertz, and Lane Johnson are all expected to suit up against the Seahawks. Not only that, but they are also getting healthy on defense, so the Eagles team that will be taking the field on Sunday is the strongest they have put out there in several weeks.
How Long Will Seattle’s Magic Last?
You could argue that the Seahawks have been the most overachieving team in the entire league, having turned an average-at-best roster into an 11-5 team. As we said before, this team was oh so close to locking up the No. 3 seed last week, but now they face a tall task in the opening round of the playoffs. Russell Wilson has been making plays out of the pocket all season long, as he has often had to run for his life behind a porous offensive line. His running backs won’t be doing him many favors this week, as Marshawn Lynch, Travis Homer, and Robert Turbin are the only healthy backs on the roster.
Fortunately for Wilson, the easiest way to beat this Eagles defense is to throw it deep on this terrible secondary, and Wilson is one of the best deep-ball throwers in the entire league. The question is, will Wilson be able to string together enough plays to outscore this Eagles offense?
Best Point Spread Pick: Eagles (+1.5)
These two teams met in the middle of the season, and the Seahawks ground out a tough 17-9 win over the Eagles. However, the Eagles were decimated on offense at the time, including being without their star receiver Alshon Jeffery, as well as running back Jordan Howard. Jeffery will be in action Sunday, and Howard is also expected to suit up as well, so this Eagles offense that struggled mightily in their last matchup should be able to turn things around in this one.
Add in the fact that this Eagles team has more recent playoff experience than the Seahawks, and we think the Eagles will pull off the “upset” as small home underdogs.
Best Over/Under Pick: Over 45.5
Joe Public will see the 26 points scored in the previous meeting and likely run to the book to fire the under. However, as we just pointed out, these are two different teams than the ones that faced off earlier in the season, so we like the over in this spot.
The Eagles offense should be able to put some drives together, and Wilson will likely have to chuck the ball downfield early and often, which should lead to some big plays. Take the over.
Best Player Prop: Russell Wilson Over 250.5 Passing Yards
As we mentioned before, the recipe for beating the Eagles is to throw it deep, so it stands to reason that we like the over passing yards on Wilson. Wilson hasn’t covered this number too much recently, but he has thrown for more 230 yards in six of his last eight games, so he has often been close to this number. Even if the Seahawks are leading in this game, they won’t have much of a running game to salt it away, so look for Wilson to throw the ball a ton regardless of the game script.