Well, what seems like to you and I such a long, long time ago, in reality was not that long ago, the Atlanta Falcons were knocking on the doorstep fourth and goal. Matt Ryan rolls out. Julio Jones slips, falls down, incomplete pass back of the end zone. Wouldn’t have mattered if he called it anyway, he stepped out. And the rest was history as the Eagles went on to win the Super Bowl. It’s a revenge game tonight for Atlanta. Same stadium, but do they have what it takes to cash the ticket. We’ll talk about that in just a second.
How are you, guys? Sports handicapper, Bob Balfe, here. Before I get to tonight’s game, I first want to tell you that my full season college and pro football package is available, on sale now, $239. The link is right there on the screen. This package gets you all my top-rated college picks for the entire season and all my top-rated NFL picks for the entire season. Yes, that includes the college bowl season and the NFL playoffs right through the Super Bowl. In simple terms, one small price of $239 gets you everything. All in, $239, bobbalfe.com.
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All right. Let’s talk about tonight’s game. Well, if you want to talk about from a talent side, Atlanta is the more talented team with the injuries that Philly has tonight. A couple issues on defense. Not too big of deal. I think the media is making more big of a deal out of it. Same with the Nick Foles situation. This games comes down to one thing, the offensive lines. Philadelphia, great offensive line. Atlanta, great offensive line. So I don’t think that there’s an edge in this football game because it can go either way. At first, I was going to take Atlanta. But the more I looked into it, why do it to yourself?
There’s a guy named Steve Sarkisian, and he’s the offensive coordinator for Atlanta. And he’s proven that he just doesn’t have what it takes to win on the road. Let’s let him prove to us first that he can put up 30 points in a football game on the road outside of that dome, and then we can talk. Until then, I think Philadelphia is very capable of stealing this football game. Even though they’re the favorite, they have a lot of injuries on offense, especially at the receiver position. Of course, they don’t have their starting quarterback, where Atlanta does. But again, they have that offensive line. They have Jay Ajayi. And if they can run the football well, they can get out of here and squeak by with a win. Remember, they have a new offensive coordinator this year as well.
So I’m interested to see how guys like Darren Sproles come back from injury. Obviously, he’s getting older anyway. And that was a major injury that he suffered, two of them actually. He’s a great kick returner, punt returner. He does it all. Great receiver. That’s a great weapon for Philadelphia if he’s back to full strength this year because he can do things out of the back field, which other players can’t do.
Atlanta, like I said before, they have all the talent in the world. They return everyone basically on offense. 11 of their top 12 tacklers from last year are back on defense. Very minimal injuries for this team. Not many guys hurt for the year. They’re in a great position. Philadelphia would love to have their health going into the start of the game. But again guys, this comes down to me to two things: The offensive line for Philadelphia, that they can run the ball at home. Remember, Atlanta is a dome team. Some of these dome teams, they just don’t get it done on the road, especially late in the year.
Now remember, the game from last year was very windy. The conditions were different. I think both teams will be able to get a little bit more points than they did last year, but not much. In fact, in last year’s game, both teams could have not even had their touchdowns. They got lucky to get them. One was a fumble by Foles that he was lucky to pick up. And then Atlanta on the goal line early in the first half, Matt Ryan did a Houdini act to score. So that could have been even more of a low scoring game. So I’m really interested to see how this game plays out.
Again, as long as offensive coordinator in Atlanta, they have those issues. I don’t think I have … It’s just not worth it to play them on the road. But I just don’t think that I could take Philadelphia with the circumstances they have. They have a couple suspensions on the defense, a couple guys that were released, and then they just re-signed them, a couple guys just coming off the PUP list on the defensive side. So I’m interested to see how this plays out.
Remember, slow and steady wins the race when it comes to sports gambling. If you just start firing away at every single game that’s on on Thursday or Monday night, you’ll never make any money through the course of the year. So for me, I’m just going to sit back and enjoy that the football season is back. And I hope that you guys are happy that it’s back as well.
I got a Facebook contest going on right now. Pick the winner of the football game. You got to pick the winner correctly, and pick the final score. Whoever is closest to picking the final score and with the winner, I’ll send you four free Philly cheese steaks from Pat’s in Philadelphia through Goldbely. They put it in some kind of icebox and send it right to your door. It’s pretty cool. It’s a great company. It’s cool how you can get food from all over the country now. They just throw it in that invisible ice thing and it stays frozen for five days. It’s amazing.
So again, just go on Facebook and just find where that contest is and just in the comment section put who you think is going to win and the final score and you’ll be all set to go. All right, guys, that’s going to do it for today. I’ll be back your way. We’ll preview a little bit of the college football games this weekend coming up. And of course, I’m looking forward to Sunday in NFL. Who’s it going to be this year? Who’s going to win the Super Bowl? Are the Eagles going to repeat? Or is it going to be someone totally new? Time will tell. The best part about the NFL football season this year coming up is whatever you think from last year aint’ gonna happen. It’s a brand new year. I’m sports handicapper, Bob Balfe. Guys, enjoy the weekend. It’s go time. Football is back.