How vulnerable can the pass defense of the Philadelphia Eagles be? That’s a great question as we approach Super Bowl 52, and for a good reason – the guy who will be on the other side of the line of scrimmage from that stop unit is Tom Brady, who is touted by many as the best quarterback ever and has won five world championships with the New England Patriots. These teams are going to square off at 6:30 PM ET on Sunday at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. If you are a VietBet customer, you can take advantage of reduced juice before the game starts, and then after the kickoff you can continue with the action through Live Betting Ultra.
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Patriots vs Eagles – Super Bowl 52 Betting Line:
In the Super Bowl betting lines that have been posted on this game by the people at VietBet, the Pats are the favorites:
New England Patriots -4
Philadelphia Eagles +4
Over 48.5 points -110
Under 48.5 points -110
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No team gets to the Super Bowl without playing some defense, but there are nuances, of course. The Patriots, for example, had the best scoring defense in the NFL after Week 5, allowing just 14.7 points per game, but they also gave up 4.6 yards per rushing attempt, and only one team was worse. The Eagles allowed fewer rushing yards per game than anyone in the NFL (79.2), but part of that was because they got off to such great starts, generally speaking, that the other team felt they had to pass more to catch up.
There is a perceived vulnerability on the part of the Philadelphia defense when it comes to their ability to defend against the pass, and with an extra week of preparation time, NFL betting observers fear this might be Brady’s opportunity to exploit it in a big way.
A major factor going in the Patriots’ favor here is that even if they are not able to establish much of a running game, it might not matter all that much. Brady is so adept at the concept of the short passing game that he moves the chains as if his team was getting some “quick hitters” on the ground. His running backs catch the ball as well as anybody, and that is a group that includes Dion Lewis, Rex Burkhead and James White. So the Eagles certainly have to be sound underneath, and the proficiency with these backs will hold a team that doesn’t blitz a whole lot to begin with from sending extra people after Brady excessively.
But anybody who thinks Brady is only about short passes had better think again. There was no quarterback in the NFL who had more yardage in his passes in the air than Brady, and what we mean by that is yardage from his hand to the receivers’ hands, not including the yards they gain after the catch. Brandin Cooks, who has been a great acquisition, can stretch the Philadelphia secondary out, as he was second in the NFL in receiving yards on passes that traveled 20 yards or more (significant). Chris Hogan missed time this season with injuries, but he is also a speedster who can really get it down the field. The Patriots always have a “smurf” receiver for the slot, and even though Julian Edelman has missed the season, Danny Amendola has stepped right in, coming up big in the two playoff games.
Oh, and then there’s a guy named Rob Gronkowski, who is only the most productive tight end, perhaps of all-time.
And guess what? The Eagles apply pressure to opposing quarterbacks more often than any team in the NFL, but Brady’s passer rating in situations when he’s been pressured is a phenomenal 96.6.
This is going to be tough to beat.
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By Charles Jay