Both teams in this week’s Monday Night Football contest are slumping, but that’s about where the similarities end. The Philadelphia Eagles may have lost two straight games – both to Super Bowl contenders – but they still can battle back to gain the top seed in the NFC and a win in this game gets them in the playoffs.
The Seattle Seahawks, who have lost four in a row, are fighting for their playoff lives and even a win here – as a field goal underdog at home – won’t guarantee them a thing.
The major question around this game and the spread involves Seattle’s starting quarterback. Geno Smith injured his groin in practice Nov. 7 and missed last week’s loss to the San Francisco 49ers. He is listed as questionable for this one and the Seahawks have said it will be a game time decision.
If Smith can’t go, Seattle will have another week behind Drew Lock, who completed 22 of 31 passes for 269 yards last week, but also threw two interceptions.
Eagles vs. Seahawks odds
|Eagles Moneyline Odds
|Seahawks Moneyline Odds
|46.5 points (over -110, under -110)
|Dec. 18, 8:15 p.m. ET
About the Eagles (10-3 SU, 6-4-3 ATS, 7-6 o/u)
The Eagles no longer enjoy their perch alone atop the NFC and the 49ers now hold the tiebreaker by dint of the teams’ game two weeks ago. Since Nick Siriani took over this team before the 2021 season, the Eagles’ only three-game losing streak came in his first month as head coach. To suffer their second in his regime would be a potentially devastating blow to their Super Bowl hopes.
Everyone seems to be jumping off the Philly bandwagon following those two lopsided losses to the other major contenders in the NFC, but they did get a big overtime win over a hungry Buffalo Bills team the week before that.
It seems to be largely a matter ore re-igniting an offence that didn’t get in the end zone vs. Dallas, snapping a 94-game streak of having scored a TD. Philly’s lone touchdown in that 33-13 loss came on a fumble return. Quarterback Jalen Hurts finished 18 of 27 passing for 197 yards and added 30 yards rushing. Receiver A.J. Brown had 94 yards receiving. The components are still in place.
This Seattle game is a rare opportunity for a team that tends to handle its business as well as any. The Seahawks are the first sub-.500 team the Eagles have faced since Week 8. Then again, Seattle rarely is a welcoming spot for the Eagles, who have lost seven straight to the Seahawks and haven’t won in Seattle since 2008. Plenty of mixed signals in this one.
About the Seahawks (6-7 SU, 6-6-1 ATS, 6-7 o/u)
The Hawks’ four-game losing streak is the longest in Pete Carroll’s tenure. It has pushed them out of solid playoff positioning and into a muddle of teams with records in the .500 range. On the other hand, a win here would keep significant hopes alive. Seattle’s final three opponents are the Tennessee Titans, Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals.
Originally, this game was to be played on Sunday, but the NFL was able to move it to Monday night as part of its new flex arrangement with broadcasters. The Seahawks probably didn’t mind. They have done some of their best work on Monday nights. Their all-time record is 29-12 in the prime-time slot, a 70.7% winning record that is the best in NFL history. They are 13-4 on Monday night’s under Carroll.
Just as there are questions in Philly’s secondary, the Seahawks have to worry about covering Brown and the Eagles’ other top threats. Adams didn’t practice all week and the other cornerback, Riq Woolen, has been under heat lately after all the big plays the 49ers made in that game.
One X-factor in this game is one of the NFL’s most exceptional athletes: Seattle receiver DK Metcalf. For the Seahawks to win this game, it feels as if Metcalf is going to have to make some big plays. Lately, he has been in the middle of everything and he has made a habit of shining against the Eagles.
Metcalf helped incite a brawl with the 49ers after reacting to a hit by linebacker Fred Warner after an interception return and was ejected for his actions. The game before that, he caught six passes for 134 yards and three touchdowns against the Dallas Cowboys.
Two of Metcalf’s biggest career games came the last two times these teams met. In the 2019 playoffs, Metcalf had seven catches for 160 yards and a touchdown. When the teams played last season, he caught 177 yards worth of passes, which remains his career high.
The past couple of games should have Metcalf motivated and ready for this one. Seattle has to make it a priority to get him the ball early and often. Absent Darius Slay this week, Philly will be hard-pressed to handle three strong Seattle receivers, with Metcalf the most imposing of the bunch.
D.K Metcalf (SEA) over 63.5 receiving yards
The big blow for Philly is losing CB Darius Slay, who underwent arthroscopic knee surgery last week and is out. They’ll also be missing C Cam Jurgens (pectoral) and LB Zach Cunningham (knee), as well as CB Avonte Maddox (pectoral), who is on injured reserve.
The Seahawks have a litany of questionable players, including: Smith, CB Devon Witherspoon (hip), S Jamal Dams (knee), WR Dee Eskridge (ribs) and LB Nick Bellore.
Designers of Lumen Field opted not to install a retractable roof to enhance views of the skyline and nearby mountains. That could be a factor here as forecasts are calling for steady, light rain and temperatures of about 6 C with light winds.
- The average score in Seahawks games this season has been 44.4 points. The average score in Eagles games has been 46.7 points. The over-under total at Bet365 is 46 here.
- The Eagles are 9-1 as moneyline favourites and 7-1 when favoured on the moneyline by -165 or shorter.
- The Seahawks are 1-6 as moneyline underdogs and 1-4 as moneyline ‘dogs of +140 or better.
Player Prop Trends
- There are indications Smith might go in this one and that could open up possibilities if Bet365 lists his player props before kickoff. Smith’s passing-yards average exceeds his average prop total by 19.5 yards and he has passing touchdowns in nine of 12 games this year.
- The way Metcalf has looked lately and, given the problems in Philly’s secondary, it’s hard not to look favorably at his receiving yards prop (63.5 yards at -115).
- Seattle CB Tre Brown has allowed just 20 receptions on 34 targets in 11 games. He figures to spend a lot of time covering Brown, which could make it tough for Brown to exceed 6.5 receptions.
Wagers To Consider
- It’s impossible to ignore the dominance Seattle has shown in this quasi-rivalry over the years as well as the excellence it has shown on Monday nights. Consider going with the ‘dog at home in this one, particularly if you get it at a field goal or more.
- Given Philadelphia’s injuries and underperformance in the secondary, either of Seattle’s quarterbacks should be able to exploit some mismatches for big plays. In addition to Metcalf’s overs, consider Tyler Lockett over 21.5 yards for longest reception and Jaxon Smith-Njigba over 18.5 yards for longest reception.