The Eagles saved their season last week with an emphatic win over the L.A Rams, but now they have to do it all over again as J.J Watt and the tenacious Texans come to town. Last week, we hit an extremely promising 3/5 bold predictions, lifting us to 23/65 on the season. Can we stay as hot as the Eagles in week 16? Here are this week’s five bold predictions:
Last week, a legend was born. Captain Cre’Von LeBlanc emerged as a staple of the ‘Liam Jenkins Brand’ after a confident game with some big-time tackles saw the former Chicago Bears cornerback rise to the occasion and push himself into the cornerback conversations for 2019. But can he follow that performance up?
I think he’ll do even more than that. LeBlanc has been getting better each and every week in the nickel and will be asked to step up again this week with a home crowd behind him. For my first bold prediction, I’m looking for Captain Cre’Von to pick off his first pass since 2016.
Out of the ‘blue’
With Lamar Miller sidelined, the Texans will be without a fundamental offensive cog. Miller has 900+ yards on the season and has been really efficient behind a dreadful offensive line (which we’ll get to later). His replacement, Alfred Blue, is averaging around 3.5 yards per carry this season and is coming up against a run defense that just found a way to silence Todd Gurley.
My second bold prediction is for Alfred Blue to record no more than 50 rushing yards, with the Eagles able to replicate the damage they dealt to the Rams one week ago.
The return of Alshon
Alshon Jeffery exploded for a 160-yard game last week, with Nick Foles more than willing to toss it up to his #1 receiver. It’s something that Wentz has been unable to do this season for numerous reasons, but Foles getting the ball out quick and taking those deep shots really sparked an offensive fire. The question is, will that continue?
The Texans have the league’s 26th ranked pass defense, giving up 3,616 yards through the air to go with 24 touchdowns. Alshon Jeffery will be licking his lips at this opportunity and I’m predicting he will record a his second consecutive 100+ yard game and score his 6th touchdown of the season.
Stepping up to the plate
The Texans offensive line is d r e a d f u l. Allowing 108 QB hits and 52 sacks, Deshaun Watson has constantly been asked to do everything himself given the lack of depth at receiver. The Eagles pass-rush was finally able to build some momentum last week, even without Timmy Jernigan, who is questionable to return this week. A strong defensive outing could well be on the cards if Cox can be even half as dominant as he was last week.
I’m predicting the Eagles to bring down Watson 4 times, hitting him 12 during a pivotal week 16 clash where a banged up DeAndre Hopkins and a struggling Alfred Blue will be asked to try and carry the unit.
Mike Groh has a chance to save his future this week. After the Eagles came out and successfully outscored the Rams (shocking the world in the process), there’s hope yet that the offense can somehow fire on all cylinders. Whether that’s getting Golden Tate involved, relying on the run to balance things out or simply spreading the ball around, the fact Foles is able to move the ball so quickly now gives Groh some freedom.
This is a wildcard pick. but I’m predicting at least one offensive trick-play or new formation that confuses the defense and forces an error or a timeout. Groh is fighting for his future as an offensive coordinator and it’s going to take some nifty game planning to succeed in doing so.
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