New Jersey online sports bettors view a winding, confusing NFC East.
The Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys and Washington Football Team enter December off of some wild fluctuations.
The 5-7 Eagles have gone from giddy to not pretty when they invade MetLife Stadium for the second straight week. Gone is the two-game win streak and 3-1 run from the past four games.
They bring diminished playoff hopes into a must-win situation against the New York Jets. It will surprise some that the Eagles opened as substantial chalk after their last effort. As of Monday morning, NJ online sportsbooks were showing the Eagles odds at -7.
Philadelphia, which laid a 13-7 egg against the Giants during NFL Week 12, faces a team that just surpassed its win total from last year. The Jets, who earned victory number three against the Houston Texans, are playing the hardest they have all year.
For the 4-7 Giants, it’s another chance to be competitive. They have covered four of the last five, a financial gold mine for many New Jersey gamblers.
Big Blue visits the revitalized Miami Dolphins, who, at 5-7, have won four straight. The Giants are a small underdog.
The 7-4 Cowboys, surprising losers in three of four, visit the depleted New Orleans Saints Thursday night. Dallas suffered a 36-33 overtime loss on Thanksgiving Day to the reeling Las Vegas Raiders. The Saints, pounded by the Buffalo Bills 31-6 on Thanksgiving, have lost three straight without star running back Alvin Kamara, whose status is unknown for Thursday.
Washington, who defeated the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night, visits the Raiders.
Washington also is playing its best ball of the season but has too many teams to vault for a playoff spot.
Eagles vs. Jets odds at NJ sportsbooks
Birds battling old demons
Will it be the team that had scored 138 points in four games or the team which scored seven points against the Giants?
They had four turnovers, negating a 332-264 edge in yardage.
To beat the Jets, they must avoid repeating some mistakes. Eagles fans are hoping to avoid a replay of the same nightmare at MetLife Stadium. And some of the plays are hard to forget.
Jalen Hurts tossed a pick in scoring territory when the Eagles trailed 3-0 in the second quarter. He also threw an interception on the final play of the first half when the Eagles were on the Giants’ 1-yard line.
“Throw it away and take three,” former Eagle LeSean McCoy tweeted. “High School stuff.”
When center Jason Kelce went left with an injury, backup center Nate Herbig brutalized the Eagles with two holding penalties. One wiped out a looming drive. The other took a Boston Scott touchdown off the board before halftime and they got nothing.
These developments, and Hurts’ last-play pick, provided the following ugly stat:
A 92-yard drive in 16 plays, which ate up 6:12 of clock time, ended up a giant bust. A giant bust resulting in zero points.
And still, the game was there to be taken. Two late drops by Jalen Reagor prompted more frustration by the fans. The second was one he absolutely should have brought in. It would have given the Eagles the ball on the Giants’ 1-yard line with time for a spike and a game-winning attempt.
Underneath it all, the Eagles again ran the ball effectively. They did many things well defensively.
But in the end, they beat themselves. And they had no urgency.
That’s on the coaching staff to correct this week.
NFC East odds by the numbers
Here’s the betting performance record of each of the four NFC East teams using DraftKings Sportsbook odds at kickoff.
- 5-7 on the moneyline
- 6-6 versus spread
- 6-6 on the over
New York Giants:
- 4-7 on the moneyline
- 6-5 versus spread
- 3-7-1 on the over
- 7-4 on the moneyline
- 8-3 versus spread
- 6 -5 on the over
- 5-6 on the moneyline
- 4 -7 versus spread
- 5-6 on the over
NFC East versus AFC East betting watch
The vaunted backfield is banged up. The Eagles sorely miss Jordan Howard, who suffered a knee injury against the Saints in Week 11 and did not play against the Giants. And then Miles Sanders left the Giants game with a second-half injury.
The Birds are less potent with a backfield tandem of Scott and Kenneth Gainwell if Howard and Sanders can’t play this week.
Monitor the Kelce situation. If he can’t go, this is not the same team.
Will Hurts rush for another TD? That is one prop that will go up.
The Birds will probably target DeVonta Smith more too.
As for the Jets odds, it’s quarterback Zach Wilson and a set of interchangeable parts.
Giants vs. Dolphins odds at NJ sportsbooks
Giants look to parlay another nail-biter
Big Blue relied on a good second-half scoring drive and brought Daniel Jones back into the mix as a runner.
The Giants quarterback has been quiet in that regard since suffering a concussion early in the year against the Cowboys. He did just enough to keep the Eagles off balance and completed a number of clutch third-down conversions on the drive that put New York up 13-7 late in the fourth quarter.
Jones rushed the ball nine times and will probably have to do that again.
The Giants are not a good come-from-behind team but managed to get up early and keep the game low scoring. It was a game the Eagles refused to win.
As far as betting on the Giants this week goes, the G-Men have gobbled up a turnover in every game this year. Bettors will consider whether a Tua Tagovailoa pick is a viable wager.
For Miami, gamblers will keep an eye on receiver Jaylen Waddle, who tallied 137 yards on nine catches and a touchdown in Miami’s 33-10 blowout win over the Carolina Panthers.
He is the favorite target of Tagovailoa.
Cowboys vs. Saints odds at NJ sportsbooks
Cowboys leading NFC East but not running away
What’s with this team?
Setbacks to the Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs and Las Vegas Raiders in the last four weeks. The opponents are borderline or low-level playoff teams.
The Cowboys, who got out to a fast start, have been playing on automatic pilot. NJ sports bettors who embraced that pattern have been cashing bets against them.
Zeke Elliott and Tony Pollard are an able backfield duo. The Cowboys like to give Elliott a potential scoring handoff near the goal line every game.
Monitor the COVID-19 breakout affecting the Cowboys, especially the coaching staff, this week.
Starting right tackle Terence Steele, three offensive coaches and three strength coaches will likely miss the game. Add Dallas head coach Mike McCarthy’s name to the list.
In terms of Thursday Night Football betting angles, we have continually touted Cowboys tight end Dalton Schultz as an anytime scorer. He tallied one official touchdown last week and had another called back for a penalty. He’s viable along with quarterback Dak Prescott’s passing totals.
It’s still early in the week, but Kamara could be returning for New Orleans. Monitor that.
Washington: Suddenly a Football Team
At 5-6, it has been resurrected and just accomplished something only the Cowboys had previously done. It owns a three-game win streak.
Washington’s crazy 17-15 triumph over the Seattle Seahawks lifts them up before a suddenly-important matchup with the Raiders.
Washington may have built character surviving plays like the one that happened late in the first half. Washington scored to go up 9-7. But something happened on the extra point.
Seattle’s Rasheem Green blocked the conversion, scooped it and ran the distance for two Seattle points.
The play also injured Washington kicker Joey Slye. The team may have to find a kicker this week.
Quarterback Taylor Heinicke was efficient for Washington, guiding them to a 17-9 lead. J.D. McKissic scored twice.
But the Washington D allowed a 96-yard drive and a touchdown with 15 seconds left. They did deny the conversion and eked out the win.
Heinicke, McKissic and Antonio Gibson will be interesting prop plays this week against a porous Raiders defense.
In terms of expectations and optimism, they sit where the Eagles did a week ago.