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Eagles enter Saints game as significant road underdogs

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Shocking, right?

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Philadelphia Eagles Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

After losing to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football, the Philadelphia Eagles are 4-5 through their first nine games of the 2018 NFL season. And the reigning Super Bowl champions are now staring 4-6 right in the face.

To no surprise, the Eagles are entering their Week 11 road game against the New Orleans Saints as big underdogs. According to SB Nation’s odds page, the line for this game opened with the Saints as seven point home favorites. That’s four more than the standard three point home favorite. The line has since shifted to the Saints being favored by as much as 9.5 points.

It’s obviously not difficult to see why the 8-1 Saints are so heavily favored. They’re playing like the best team in the NFL right now. New Orleans ranks first in points per game with 36.7. The Eagles, meanwhile, rank 21st with 22 per game.

The Saints have the perfect mix of talent and coaching, offensively. But it all starts with the quarterback. Future Hall of Famer Drew Brees is having an amazing MVP-caliber season. Despite the fact he turns 40 years old in January, Brees is completing 77.3 percent (wtf) of his passes for 2,601 yards (8.6 yards per attempt), 21 touchdowns, one interception, and a league-leading 123.8 passer rating. He also has three rushing touchdowns because why not.

It’s hard to look at this Eagles secondary and think they have a prayer of containing Brees on Sunday. With Ronald Darby out for the year and Jalen Mills still hurt, Philadelphia will likely be starting Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas at cornerback. There’s hope that the talented Jones could play well, though his status will be worth monitoring as he’s coming off a hamstring injury. That still leaves concern about Douglas, who was a painful liability in the Cowboys game. Corey Graham also continues to be a weak point at safety.

Playing on the road only makes matters tougher for the Eagles. The Saints are 56-47-1 against the spread at home since the Sean Payton and Drew Brees era began in 2006. That’s the seventh best percentage during that span. New Orleans is 69-35 straight up in those games. As for the Eagles, they’re 5-5 as road underdogs since the Doug Pedrson and Carson Wentz era began in 2016. They’re 4-6 straight up.

Barring some kind of unexpected miracle, the Eagles are likely headed for another loss on Sunday. Doesn’t look like New Orleans will be sleeping on this one.