Buffalo Bills vs. Philadelphia Eagles Preview
Where: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia
When: Thursday, August 17, 2017, 7:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: WKBW
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Betting on the Buffalo Bills (+170)
The Bills dealt away oft-injured wide receiver Sammy Watkins last week to the Los Angeles Rams, signaling another rebuild of sorts. Buffalo fans didn’t exactly like the apparent giving up on Watkins, but for now, they’ll have to satisfy themselves watching a fifth-round pick quarterback in the last draft try to wiggle the team into a bounce back win following a 17-10 loss at home to the Minnesota Vikings last week.
That’s Nathan Peterman, who flashed some promise against the Vikings, throwing for 112 yards on 13-of-25 passes with a touchdown and zero interceptions.
Regular season starter Tyrod Taylor also played minimal snaps, going 5-of-8 for 46 yards. It’s unlikely he’ll see significantly more time on the field next time around this being just the preseason. Without Watkins downfield any more, the Bills could see an increased presence from the likes of Daikiel Shorts and Dezmin Lewis, who led the team in targets versus Minnesota with six apiece.
Jordan Matthews arrives in Buffalo tonight ?
Joining former teammate LeSean McCoy
Jordan high character guy. Will be missed pic.twitter.com/qzy4IAB0WW
— John Clark CSN/NBC (@JClarkCSN) August 12, 2017
Jordan Matthews could see action against his former team, though. Matthews, who had 804 receiving yards and three touchdowns last year, was part of the three-team trade that landed him to the Eagles and Watkins to the Rams.
Look also for the Bills to utilize the ground game again after producing 127 rushing yards
Betting on the Philadelphia Eagles (-200)
If last week’s 24-9 loss to the Green Bay Packers was any indication, you could tell that Philadelphia quarterback Carson Wentz is all set to go to war in the regular season. Wentz went perfect in his first preseason appearance this year, going 4-for-4 for 56 yards before handing the reins to Matt McGloin and Dane Evans. McGloin went 28-for-42 for 2015 yards with a pick, while Evans was just 3 of 8 for just 22 yards with an interception.
The Eagles also barely got anything from the backfield with rookie Corey Clement and company recording just 47 rushing yards. The offense will come for the Eagles though in the regular season but what they should be busy fixing in these exhibition games is their defense, particularly against the pass.
One of the biggest issues for the Eagles last season was their secondary and with them playing in the same division as Dez Bryant and Odell Beckham Jr., the Eagles recognized the need to shore up the unit, drafting a couple of cornerbacks in Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas and most importantly trading for ex-Bill CB, Ronald Darby. Darby could make his debut in Bills uniform this Thursday.
Philadelphia (-4) wins, 21-17.
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