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This will be a battle of the Birds.
The NBC10 football-picking team of “experts” was dead on Week 1 picking the Eagles to dispatch the Rams. Will our experts make it two in a row?
The Eagles fly south this week for a prime time Sunday Night Football showdown with the Falcons in the Georgia Dome. While the Eagles are coming off their 31-13 drubbing of the Rams, the Falcons enter after being blown out by the same 18-point margin by the Bears in Chicago.
So will the Falcons continue to swoon while the Eagles continue to soar?
This week 71-percent of our “experts” say the Eagles will win. The positive thinkers are headlined by our sports team with one major exception.
Sports anchor Vai Sikahema sees Eagles QB Michael Vick dealing better with the blitz and winning his homecoming 28-17 -- “besides the Eagles have Atlanta’s number.”
Fellow sports guy John Clark also sees Vick as the x-factor in this battle of the Birds. “I think it will be a close game throughout -- Eagles win 35-27.”
Sports/traffic reporter Jillian Mele sees getting a handle on Atlanta running back Michael Turner as a key as the Eagles win by a touchdown 20-13.
Sports producer Dean -- who was the only NBC10er to pick against the Eagles last week -- is going a different direction this week.
“I see an offensive explosion with the Eagles bringing too much firepower,” Dean says. “Eagles soar past the Falcons 38-24.”
Fellow sports producer Colin also sees “plenty of offense” especially from WR Jeremy Maclin -- who will have a breakout game -- with the Eagles coming out on top 30-24.
But Football Night in Philly's Howard Eskin sees a different Bird coming away victorious because Atlanta is desperate and playing at home.
“I think the Eagles are the better team but the better teams don't always win,” Eskin says. “Tough one for the Eagles -- 21-17 Atlanta wins. But relax, the Eagles win the next three.”
Reporter Tim Furlong says the Eagles offensive line still needs time to gel but the Falcons “are NOT the team they were last year (when they were the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs).” Eagles win 24-17.
News desk guy Franco once again sees a big Eagles offensive output and a 34-24 win.
“Vick’s return to Atlanta will be all about offense. Eagles will score and score fast,” Franco says. “Pressure will get to the Falcons Matt Ryan and cause a turnover that will end up giving the Birds the edge.”
Vick will outplay Falcons QB (and Philly-area native) Ryan but worries about the Turner Burner could keep this game closer, according to sales guy Corey.
“The Eagles will continue to struggle against the run (fantasy football prediction alert) as Turner runs for over 100 yards and a couple scores,” Corey says. “Eagles get the win 26-20 but questions will linger about their run defense.”
Concerns about Turner pushed social media guy Lou (who was the closest to predicting the final outcome in St. Louis) picking against the Eagles this time.
“Falcons 27, Eagles 20,” he says. “This is a ‘must-win’ for the Falcons coming off last week’s thrashing in Chicago. Turner runs it enough to limit Vick’s possessions, and Ryan steps up with his predecessor in the house.”
Meteorologist Glenn “Hurricane” Schwartz sees the Falcons eking out a 30-27 win using their domed field and home crowd to their advantage.
“Falcons (picked to win the Super Bowl by Sports Illustrated) are a way better team than they showed last week. That, PLUS being at home, PLUS wanting to show up Vick, PLUS wanting to beat the “Dream Team” on national TV, PLUS an explosive offense. For the Eagles, Vick may be too ramped up to play well, especially in the first quarter. The noise will disturb the Eagles offense as well.”
As for the Birds Nest bloggers…
This guy sees Vick being too ramped up in front former hometown fans -- expect some mistakes, maybe an INT or two. Those turnovers plus Atlanta’s ability to spread the Eagles vaunted secondary with “Rowdy” Roddy White, underrated WR Harry Douglass and rookie phenom Julio Jones as well as old-reliable TE Tony Gonzalez makes the Eagles susceptible to having the untested linebackers torched when dropping into coverage. Falcons win 24-20.
My counterparts are more positive both picking Philly. Drew Magary sees an offensive explosion from Vick and co. because he’s “not convinced that the Falcons are all that good.” Eagles win 42-25.
Brian Solomon sees the Falcons as better then the Rams “but they’re still overrated.” Vick throws for 300-plus yards as the Eagles win 27-23.
Do you agree with any of us? Do you see things totally differently? Let us know in the comments below.