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Battle of the Birds in Atlanta

The Philadelphia Eagles(7-4) head to Atlanta to take on the Falcons(6-4) in an important matchup for both clubs. This will also be former Atlanta Falcon star Michael Vick’s return to face his old team. Vick who was signed by the Eagles this past offseason really hasn’t seen much playing time, but I am sure Andy Reid will put him in the game at some point. I am curious as to what the crowds reaction will be when he steps on the field. Anyways, back to this matchup…Right now both teams are fighting for a spot in the wild card race which has the Green Bay Packers and the Eagles currently holding the top spot. Philadelphia will also try to keep pace with the 1st place Dallas Cowboys of whom they currently trail by 1 game in the division.

Both teams are injury plagued with some key players. We will start on the Eagles sideline and who will be missing out on this Sunday’s action. The biggest loss for the Eagles is the fact that leading wide-out DeSean Jackson will sit this one out after suffering a concussion in last weeks win over Washington. This will not only hurt the passing game for Philly but also the return game in which his speed will certainly be missed this week. Now for the Falcons, they will be without starting quarterback Matt Ryan in this game and that is a huge blow to this team. Instead they will rely on the arm of Chris Redman who will be making his 1st start of the season. The main battle in this game will be the Eagles offense against the Falcons defense which had a strong showing in last weeks game with Tampa Bay. The Eagles offense has been explosive putting up 26.6 points per game, but will be without their main threat DeSean Jackson.

As I take a real close look at this game, I see the Eagles taking this one despite not having Jackson on the field. Philadelphia’s defense will harass Chris Redman and force him into making bad throws. Matt Ryan’s absence will certainly affect Atlanta and the running game is not as big of threat without Michael Turner. I see a final score of somewhere around 27-14, Philly will come storming out of the gates early and build a decent lead before the Falcons really have a shot in this one. Look for rookies LeSean McCoy and Jeremy Maclin to have big games, especially Maclin with the absence of Jackson. McCoy will see a majority of the carries as Westbrook will sit out this game with a concussion and should be back in action soon.

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