Week 1: Lions vs. Eagles Prop Bets and Key Matchups
The start of a new season for the Eagles brings a lot of optimism and expectations for a revamped offense and defense. In their opening matchup, the Birds are currently 5-point favorites against the Hard Knocks’ darling Detroit Lions.
Rather than look at the game spread, let’s focus on an undervalued bet and the Eagles’ prop bets. Before we dive into it, make sure you’re bankrolling all of your NFL Bets this season with The Liberty Line. Our promo codes will put a FREE $350 in your pockets.
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With a stacked team on paper, it seems the big question heading into 2022 will be the same as it was in 2021: can Jalen Hurts become this team’s franchise quarterback?
His passing yards prop for this game is set at 229.5, with completions at 18.5. The uncertainty surrounding Hurts makes me lean towards betting on the Eagles’ defensive unit, which from top to bottom, is one of the deepest squads they have had in a while.
WR DeVonta Smith vs. CB Amani Oruwariye
“The Slim Reaper” is due for a breakout season with AJ Brown set to start across from him. Devonta finished 2nd in yards per reception amongst all rookie wide receivers (14.3), 3rd in receiving yards (916) and receiving touchdowns (5), and graded as PFF’s 5th highest rookie receiver at 77.2.
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In his first action of the 2022 season, Smith faces off against Amani Oruwariye, the Lions’ 2019 fifth-round pick out of Penn State.
Oruwariye got the starting nod in 2020, and quarterbacks went after him. Targeting him a team-high 76 times, teams threw at the young corner 26 more times than any other Detroit defender. He finished that year giving up 733 yards (17.5 yds/rec) but forced seven incompletions while allowing three touchdowns.
In 2021, things remained mostly the same as Amani once again led the team in targets against (69) but forced right incompletions and gave up two touchdowns. He allowed 14.2 yards per reception last year, but Detroit is confident in his ability to man the outside corner spot opposite Jeff Okudah. Whenever DeVonta Smith matches up against Oruwariye, it will be pitch and catch between him and Jalen.
- DeVonta Smith OVER 45.5 rec yds (-115)
- DeVonta Smith OVER 3.5 recs (-110)
- DeVonta Smith Anytime TD Scorer (+160)
Eagles Parlay Palace: The Slim Reaper
TE Dallas Goedert vs. LB Alex Anzalone/S DeShon Elliott
From his days in New Orleans to last season in Detroit, Alex Anzalone’s pass coverage struggles have been well documented. He’s allowed opponents to catch 74.8% of passes thrown his way but is a solid tackler after the catch.
The Lions would be foolish to stick Anzalone one-on-one with Dallas Goedert so expect to see safety DeShon Elliott, a sixth-round pick by the Ravens. The Texas product’s NFL career began on the Injured Reserve in 2018 with a fractured and in 2019 with a knee injury.
Elliott only played 40 total snaps before 2020 and was slated to be sub-safety before the Ravens released Earl Thomas in the offseason. DeShon mainly played as a box safety but struggled in his limited pass coverage opportunities. He allowed two touchdowns on only 32 targets and 10.2 yards per reception.
With AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith’s route-running and speed on the outside, Dallas Goedert is going to eat against the Lions and is one of my favorite Eagles prop bets this Sunday.
- Dallas Goedert OVER 4.5 recs (+125)
- Dallas Goedert OVER 47.5 rec yds (-115)
- Dallas Goedert Anytime TD Scorer (+140)
Eagles Parlay Palace: Goedert Goes Off
The Big V Injury vs. Eagles Defensive Line
The Lions go into emergency shuffle mode with the news that former Eagle Halapoulivaati Vaitai will begin the season on injured reserve with a back injury.
Detroit can put together plenty of combinations, including starting practice squad vet Tommy Kraemer or Logan Stenberg. Logan missed the last half of 2021 after suffering a knee injury, but either he or Kraemer could be viable plug-and-play guys at Vaitai’s guard position.
Another look could be moving studs like Frank Ragnow or Penei Sewell to guard and putting another practice squad vet, Matt Nelson, at the left tackle spot. Either way, this offensive line looks prime for the Eagles to dismantle on passing downs.
If the Lions go with Kraemer or Stenberg at guard, I expect Javon Hargrave to put Goff in the dirt at least once. If they choose to move Penei Sewell inside and stick Matt Nelson at tackle, Josh Sweat and Haason Reddick should have a field day.
The Missing Big V Bets
- Javon Hargrave OVER 0.75 sacks (LINE TBD)
- Haason Reddick OVER 0.75 sacks (LINE TBD)
- Josh Sweat OVER 0.75 sacks (LINE TBD)
Eagles Lottery Ticket SGP (please use responsible units)
- Jalen Hurts OVER 219.5 pass yards
- DeVonta Smith OVER 49.5 rec yds
- DeVonta Smith Anytime TD Scorer
- Dallas Goedert OVER 44.5 rec yds
- Dallas Goedert Anytime TD Scorer
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Image Credit: Yong Kim/Philadelphia Inquirer