The Eagles’ starters are expected to play as much as three quarters in tonight’s Week 2 preseason game at New England. Bill Belichick hasn’t been as forthcoming with his plans for the Patriots’ first unit, but don’t be surprised if Tom Brady plays through the first half.
These two teams met late last season, with the Patriots rolling to a 38-20 win at Philly.
The Patriots opened as 3.5-point favorites, but the number had been bet down to -1.5, with even a -1 at 5Dimes, as of Monday morning. You can track the line at 10 online sportsboks with OddsShark.com's odds feed.
UPDATE: A bookmanager told OddsShark.com that, "a steady flow of money had been coming in on the Eagles, before moving them to 1-point favorites. Now, getting pretty good two-way action. Eighty percent are on the Over."
Starting your handicapping process with a look at the OVER has been a good idea when betting a preseason game involving the Patriots and Bill Belichick over the years.
Belichick-coached teams are 43-26-1 on the OVER/UNDER in the preaseason. That trend likely had something to do with the upward movement on the total for tonight’s game.
The total opened at 38.5, but had been bet up all the way to 41.5 as of Monday morning.
Eagles: Michael Vick is expected to play into the third quarter, before rookie Nick Foles, Trent Edwards, and Mike Kafka vie for the remainder of the snaps.
Patriots: Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallet will take over for Brady, likely at some point in the second half.
--The Eagles have issues at left tackle, where expected starter Demetress Bell has been demoted. King Dunlap will replaced Bell in the starting lineup.
--The Patriots also have issues on the offensive line, as right tackle Marcus Cannon was exposed by the New Orleans Saints’ defense last week. Cannon will get a little bit of a break with defensive end Jason Babin out for the Eagles.
--The Patriots are 19-18-4 ATS in the preseason over the last 10 years. The Eagles are 18-23-1 ATS over the last 10 preseasons.
--OddsShark.com consensus numbers show 63.4 percent like the OVER, with 55.2 percent backing the Eagles as of Monday morning.
--Weather is not expected to be a factor tonight, with temperatures in the high 60s and only a slight chance of rain and winds under 10 mph.