Monday Night Football Picks & Predictions: Seahawks vs. Eagles Spread, Total & Prop Bets
Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Carson Wentz
Seahawks vs. Eagles Picks
The Seattle Seahawks and Philadelphia Eagles find themselves in very different races for their respective division titles.
A win on Monday night would improve the Seahawks to 8-3 with a one-game lead in the NFC West. A win for the the Eagles, on the other hand, would get them to … 4-6-1 with a marginal lead in the NFC East.
Brandon Anderson: We are getting pretty close to Last Stand territory for Carson Wentz.
Remember when Wentz was an MVP candidate? That feels like an eternity ago, but it was only three seasons ago when he threw 33 touchdowns to only seven interceptions, leading the NFL in ESPN’s Total QBR. Wentz may well have won MVP that season had it not been for a knee injury that wrecked his season (and perhaps his career) in Week 14.
The Eagles went on to win the Super Bowl even without Wentz, and it looked like the start of a dynasty. They had the dream head coach and quarterback pairing, an outstanding defense, and a balanced attack. But the Eagles have been nothing but mediocre ever since.
Philadelphia went 9-7 each of the past two season and lost earlier in the playoffs than expected, and now Philly has dipped worse than ever: At 3-6-1, the Eagles are officially no longer leading the horrible NFC East with Washington winning on Thanksgiving.
Philadelphia has lost two in a row to blah Browns and Giants teams, and Monday night is the start of a brutal four-game stretch against the Seahawks, Packers, Saints and Cardinals. The Eagles close with two games against the NFC East, which could be wins No. 4 and 5, and they have to know that it may only take one more in this awful division. But if they do blow this, they’ll be facing a big change — and it almost certainly has to be Wentz or Pederson.
You can’t exactly fire the guy who won the Super Bowl three years ago when you’ve got a perfectly good second-round quarterback in Jalen Hurts waiting for his shot, so Wentz is staring down the barrel of his Eagles career. Monday night in front of the home crowd seems like a perfect chance, especially against a pretty terrible Seahawks defense.
Eight of 10 Eagles games this season have been decided by 10 or fewer points, and half of them have been decided by five. The Seahawks already played seven one-score games, too. Both teams tend to play close, contested, weird games that come down to one team making a few plays late — the difference is that Russell Wilson has been making those plays, while Wentz hasn’t.
This is a kitchen sink spot for Wentz and the Eagles. Philly has to throw everything they’ve got, and Wentz is one more bad half away from sitting on the pine and watching Hurts get his shot. Seattle has lost three of five and really hasn’t been a ton better than Philly over the middle half of the season, and the Eagles are finally mostly healthy.
I’m not confident Wentz will find a way to pull off the W, but I like him and the Eagles to keep things close. Besides, when have the Seahawks ever won comfortably in a big primetime spot?
Take the Eagles to keep things close, but don’t be afraid to play Russ at plus live moneyline odds if you get an opportunity in-game.
Stuckey: This game plays out similar to the two meetings last season, none of which got to 30 total points, so I fancy the first-half under (24 or higher) and game under (49 or higher).
I expect the Seahawks to go with a much more run-heavy attack, which will play into the strength of the Eagles defense. And despite how bad Wentz has been, I still project the offense better with him under center than a rookie quarterback in Hurts.
Also, Philly does rank third in the NFL in defending explosive passes, which is one of the strengths of this Seattle offense. Meanwhile, Seattle has struggled in giving up explosive passes (24th) but Philly has failed to hit almost any explosive passing plays down the field, ranking 31st in explosive pass play rate.
And the Seahawks defense is trending in the right direction. They also excel at covering tight ends with their excellent linebacker group, which is critical against the Eagles.
These are also two offensive lines that rank 31st and 32nd in adjusted sack rate (per Football Outsiders) going up against two defenses that rank in the top-half of the league in that same category. We could see a number of key sacks that set each offense behind the chains, leading to punts. Look out for Carlos Dunlap going up against the Philly right tackle, which will not be Lane Johnson, who’s out for the season.
The Eagles defensive front can also generate pressure from up the middle and on the edge as well as any defense in the NFC. That’s the key to containing Russ.
From a pace perspective, neither is a speed racer: The Eagles sit in the middle of pack in situation neutral situations while the Seahawks rank 25th.
This is a lower-scoring game than most project that will be decided by one possession. After all, we know that’s all Seattle does, with 18 of its past 21 victories coming by a one-possession margin.
Jacob Hollister Over 16.5 Rec Yards
Mike Randle: Hollister delivered for us in Week 11, hitting a low receiving yardage prop. Now, with fellow tight end Greg Olsen battling a ruptured plantar fascia, Hollister is ready to ascend to an increased role in the Seahawks explosive offense.
The Eagles allow the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends, including the ninth-most receptions (56). They’re annually undermanned at linebacker, opening up short to intermediate targets for Hollister. And the Eagles are stout against the run, which should force the Seahawks toward a pass-heavy game script. Per EstablishTheRun, the Eagles have held opposing running backs to a pedestrian 3.42 yards per carry.
Hollister was very productive last season, with nine games over this yardage total. I expect Philadelphia cornerback Darius Slay to battle with D.K. Metcalf, allowing for more potential targets for Hollister.
In a game with a 49-point total, Seattle should put up points with Hollister involved. This is a 10-rated prop on our FantasyLabs PlayerProp tool, which have hit at a 57% rate (612-448-9) this season.