WASHINGTON REDSKINS (3-2)
at PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (5-1)
Lincoln Financial Field – Philadelphia, PA
Kickoff: Monday, 8:30 p.m. ET
Line: Philadelphia -5.0, Total: 49.0
The Eagles will be trying to improve to 6-1 when they face the division rival Redskins on Monday Night Football.
The Redskins are coming off of a tough win over the 49ers last week, but they can’t possibly be very happy with the way that they played in that one. San Francisco has not yet won a game this season and Washington blew a big lead to let the 49ers back into that game. The Redskins will need to make sure they play a much cleaner game here, as they are going up against an Eagles team that has looked like one of the best in the NFC thus far. Philadelphia most recently faced a very good Carolina team and won 28-23 as a three-point road underdog on Thursday night. The Eagles have now won four straight and they have covered in each of their past three. They also happened to have dominated the Redskins when these teams met in Week 1. Washington was a two-point home underdog in that game and Philly ended up winning 30-17. The Redskins have, however, won-and-covered in four of the past five meetings with the Eagles, so perhaps they’ll get back on track here. One trend that stands out when looking at this game is the fact that Washington is 42-25 ATS as a road underdog of 3.5 to seven points since 1992. The Redskins are, however, a lousy 2-11 ATS versus teams allowing 7.5 yards per punt return or fewer under head coach Jay Gruden.
The Redskins will be trying to really pick up some momentum with a victory on Monday, but it’s not going to be easy to beat this Eagles team. If Washington can’t key in on Philadelphia’s weapons in the passing game then this game could get out of hand early. The main concern will be finding a way to stop Zach Ertz. He has been a matchup nightmare all season, so the Redskins will need to find a way to cover him. Sending extra safety help over the top might be the only way to do that. On offense, the Redsins will need QB Kirk Cousins (1,334 hards, 9 TD, 2 INT) to continue to play at a high level. Over the past three weeks, Cousins has thrown for seven touchdowns and just one interception. He is avoiding costly mistakes and the offense has had no trouble moving. The impressive thing is that the team is doing that without a running game. That might not be as easy against a good Philly defense, but Washington will just need to figure out a way.
The Eagles have been one of the most surprising teams in the league thus far, as they look like they are absolutely ready to contend. Not many expected them to be much more than a wild card contender this year, but it might be time to start taking them seriously. The big reason this team has been so good has been the play of QB Carson Wentz (1,584 yards, 13 TD, 3 INT). Wentz is only in his second season in the league, but he already looks like a Top 10 quarterback. Over the past two weeks alone, Wentz has thrown for seven touchdowns and just one pick. He has a cannon for an arm, but he also makes good decisions with the ball. Look for him to have a big game here, as he threw for 307 yards with two touchdowns the first time he faced Washington this year. And when Wentz does go to the air, look for TE Zach Ertz (34 rec, 405 yards, 4 TD), WR Nelson Agholor (20 rec, 321 yards, 4 TD) and WR Alshon Jeffery (24 rec, 317 yards, 2 TD) to be the ones he is throwing to. Ertz has been a monster this season, but Jeffery is due for a big game soon. He is far too talented to continue to take a backseat moving forward.