Ron Glover’s Thursday Night NFL Pick: Cincinnati Bengals vs. Philadelphia Eagles: Eagles are out to step on Bengals’ tail
Nick Foles confidence is just what the team needs as the season winds down.
The Philadelphia Eagles ended their 8-game losing streak that lasted 70 days. The Cincinnati Bengals missed out on a chance to pick up a game on the division-leading Baltimore Ravens in a 20-19 loss to the grieving Dallas Cowboys last week.
Nick Foles is finishing out the season for the Eagles who are missing a chunk of their offensive stars due to injury. Last week many of the lesser knowns on the depth chart shined in their 23-21 win in Tampa. Tonight, these players will have another opportunity to shine in what has been an otherwise dark season.
Two fourth quarter touchdowns, including one on the game’s final play is a perfect scenario to build on for Eagles rookie quarterback Nick Foles. The Eagles were able to move the ball efficiently on the ground and through the air last week against the Buccaneers. This week the Bengals interior pass rush may call for the Eagles to rely more on the legs of rookie stud Bryce Brown. Brown rushed for 347 yards in his previous two games before being held to six yards on 12 carries Sunday.
Foles was able to get rid of the ball quickly and did not turn the ball over — something that has been a rarity this season. Receivers Jeremy Maclin, Jason Avant and Riley Cooper were outstanding as Foles went 32 for 51 for 381 yards and two touchdowns.
The Eagles defense played with a sense of urgency absent for months. Rookie Fletcher Cox was huge in the pass rush and third year player Colt Anderson was impressive playing in place of Kurt Coleman. The play of the Eagles corners leaves much to be desired.
The Bengals loss last week to the Dallas Cowboys could very well come back to haunt them. The Bengals have to focus in a hostile environment against several players looking to makes someone’s roster next season. In other words…the Eagles have nothing to lose.
The dynamic duo of Andy Dalton and A.J. Green were shut down last week against Dallas. Dalton threw for 206 yards and a touchdown, he also threw an interception. Dalton has thrown three picks in his last two games after throwing none in his previous three.
After scoring in nine straight games, A.J. Green has failed to score in his last three. Sunday, Green had two key drops as he was held to three catches for 44 yards.
The biggest letdown was the Bengals defense — which was rounding into playoff form. The Bengals had not allowed more than 13 points in their previous four games as well as holding the opposition under 300 yards. The Bengals ran into trouble when they failed to get off the field late in the game.
Prediction: The Bengals are up against it with no margin for error so they will come out tight. The Eagles on the other hand are a relaxed and confident bunch beginning with Foles. This game will be close. Philly on a late field goal.
Eagles 26 – Bengals 24