FanPost

Eagles/Giants preview: The Why Bother edition

Seriously, why bother with a detailed analysis?  We know pretty much everything about these two teams and how they match up against each other, except for a few questions:

1) Does momentum count?  That is, Philly finished the season 5-1 (including last week) while the Giants finished 1-3, with their 1 win in overtime.  But they DID finish with a 12-4 record overall.  What matters more?  Does either matter at all at this point?

2) The Plax question:  Is his incident a distraction?  Or has the talk about the potential distraction a distraction?

3) What does the bye week matter?  This is a question which will get a lot of play, and associated with it is the fact that the teams getting the bye in the playoffs have a much better record than otherwise.  However, I think this can be explained by the facts that a) they are always playing at home, and b) they are almost always a lot better than the teams they are playing.  In any week, regular season, bye week, or whatever, when the best team in the conference plays at home against the 6th best (or worse, depending on circumstances), you are generally going to have a predictable result.  Because we know that the Giants aren't clearly better than the Eagles, I think that the home field is the only consideration here.  And what advantage is the home field?  About 3 points.  In other words, if the Giants win, it will be more because of the home field than any bye.


So, how do I see the game being played out?  Forget the media narratives, this game will come down to which team is better, mitigated by the home field advantage the Giants enjoy.  While I think that the Eagles are the better team (DVOA agrees with me), I don't think we're so much better that I'm not worried.

Given the way the last third of the season has gone, I am predicting an Eagles win.  I think that if the Giants win, it will be a very, very close game.  I can see the Eagles winning either close or big, depending on a few lucky breaks.  I'm guessing the Birds are due for a few of those during the postseason.

My final prediction:  Philly 35 NYG 17

 

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