Week 5: Bills vs. Eagles
The Bills and Eagles come into this contest reeling. The Eagles are more desperate than the Bills though as the "dream team" is off to a 1-3 start and are struggling. The Bills are a surprising 3-1 but coming off a loss in Cincinnati. The Eagles season may be on the line here as they don't want to fall three games under .500.
Sunday, Oct. 9th
FACTS AND FIGURES
||Buffalo (3-1) vs. Philadelphia (1-3)
||Ralph Wilson Stadium
||Network: FOX; DirecTV: 709; Sirius: 113
||Sam Rosen, Brian Billick, & Laura Okim
||Eagles by 3
||Eagles lead 6-5
||Eagles Won 2
||Eagles 17-9 in Philadelphia (2007)
||Rush (2nd); Pass (9th); overall (4th)
||Rush (30th); Pass (11th); overall (16th)
||Rush (5th); Pass (12th); overall (9th)
||Rush (25th); Pass (24th); overall (27th)
The Bills will be without their starting left tackle as Demetrius Bell suffered a shoulder injury on Sunday against Cincinnati. LB Chris White will be out again with a hamstring injury. CB Aaron Williams remains sidelined with a chest injury. The team should get G Kraig Urbik back and may get CB Terrence McGee back on a limited basis. Several other players were banged up and missed practice time this week but they should all play Sunday.
The Eagles will be without their best pass rusher. DE Trent Cole suffered a calf injury against San Francisco on Sunday and will be out a few weeks. This may neutralize the loss of Bell since Cole would have gone against the Bills rookie tackle Chris Hairston. Former Bill Jason Peters likely won't face his former team as he has a fairly significant hamstring injury. DL Antonio Dixon also won't play. Backup defensive end Juqua Parker likely will be out with a high ankle sprain.
Check out our Bills Daily Injury Page throughout the week for the latest updates on the injured players.
Bills Front Seven vs. QB Michael Vick:
Vick is a weapon that is tough to defend. The front seven must hold their containment so Vick doesn't run wild. They must do so while getting pressure to force Vick into mistakes.
DE Marcell Dareus vs. RG Danny Watkins:
This is the battle of two first round rookies as Watkins gets his first career start. Dareus started making an impact last week and needs to continue his development this week.
LB Shawne Merriman vs. OT King Dunlap:
Merriman gets a break with the former Bill Peters sidelined. He needs to take advantage of Dunlap who started five games last year. Merriman needs to make an impact for the first time this year.
LT Chris Hairston vs. DE Jason Babin:
Hairston makes his first career start and will have his hands full with Babin. With Cole sidelined Babin will very likely move over from the other side to lineup against the rookie. He already has seven sacks on the young season.
RB Fred Jackson vs. MLB Jamar Chaney:
If the Bills are going to win they need to keep Vick off the field as much as possible. Luckily the weak part of the Eagles defense is their run stopping abilities. Jackson will get a heavy workload and Chaney is the number one tackler on Philadelphia.
WR Stevie Johnson vs. CB Nnamdi Asomugha:
This could be a classic battle among one of the top young wideouts in the game and the all star veteran Asomugha. Johnson will need to make a big play or two for the Bills to win.
When The Bills Have The Ball: If you listen to comments this week it appears the Bills have finally decided they need to run the ball more with their best offensive weapon, Fred Jackson. The Eagles have given up many big plays on the ground right through the heart of their defense. Look for Buffalo to grind it out more than they have earlier in the season. This will keep the very good pass rush of Philadelphia at bay.
When The Eagles Have The Ball: Look for them to throw a lot down the field with Vick and look for him to run a lot as well. If Vick has success offensively it could be a long day for Buffalo.
BILLS DAILY PREDICTION
The Bills are 3-1 and hosting a 1-3 team and are the underdogs. The oddsmakers may know what they are talking about though, as Philadelphia is much better than their record and they are desperate which makes them even more dangerous. The Bills will have the homefield advantage but that may not be enough this week against a team that will come out fighting with their back against the wall:
Eagles 34, Bills 24
Season Prediction Record: (1-3)
Season Record Against The Spread: (2-2)
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