NFL Thursday Night Football Picks: Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles
Week 1 of the NFL regular season is officially in the books. What did we learn?
Oh, plenty. We saw Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins put up one of the best statistical games of any QB in the first week of the year. He lost two fumbles, however, which led to the Vikings losing to their NFC North division foe, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
This came as a surprise to many, but balance is essential in this league. And when you run the ball 17 times for just 41 yards, don't expect to win. That said, Minnesota did hold the Bucs to just 73 yards on 33 carries.
The Vikings need to shut down the run again this week as they travel to Philadelphia to challenge the defending NFC Champions.
Philly almost blew it against the defensively stout New England Patriots on Sunday, but a pick-six from Darius Slay helped make the difference in a 25-20 game.
One strategy I like for Week 2 NFL betting is looking to play a 0-1 team vs a 1-0 team because recency bias naturally gets overblown. Does this mean we fade Philly at home?
First, let's check the betting odds for this Thursday Night Football game, and then we can move on to a prediction.
Doc’s Sports offers NFL expert picks for every game on our NFL predictions page.
Philadelphia Eagles: -7 (-115)
Minnesota Vikings: +7 (-105)
That is where the betting line opened. Some sportsbooks have already had to move the odds to (-7.5) for the Eagles. They jumped out to an early 16-0 lead on the road against the Patriots last week and eventually had to show some character as they held on for the 25-20 victory.
So far, I am leaning towards the bet on the Eagles' point spread, but let's also look at the point total and moneylines for this game also.
Over 48.5: -110
Under 48.5: -110
Both the Minnesota Vikings and the Philadelphia Eagles shut down the running games of their respective opponents in the first week of the season, albeit against teams with sub-par ground attacks.
I do believe that the Eagles' balanced attack will eventually break down the defense of Minnesota, but I don't predict the latter will be able to return the favor. The under 48.5 isn't the worst play in the world.
A 28-20 final score is feasible.
Philadelphia Eagles: -315
Minnesota Vikings: +265
As we mentioned already, the betting line of (-7) for the Eagles won't stay around for long. That's the direction the market is moving. and I believe rightfully so.
Philly was incredible in 2022, finishing the regular season with a 14-3 record, all the while playing in the winningest division in football. They fell short to the Kansas City Chiefs, however, in the Super Bow by a score of 38-35.
The Eagles are the better team this week. The Eagles have an elite quarterback, and I think most of us can agree, for better or worse, the most intense fan base in football. By intense, I mostly just mean rude. However, any way you cut it, Philly fans can truly be difference-makers.
I don’t think we need to complicate this pick. Minnesota struggled at home and lost as 4-point favorites against a team projected to finish toward the bottom of the NFL. Philly covered the spread on the road playing one of the top defenses in the league led by Bill Belichick.
The moneyline for this game is very wide. We can't play the Eagles at (-315). We can, though, attack their point spread of just a touchdown.
It is widely believed that this line will be (-7.5) or possibly more by kickoff. Let's groove with the market here and play the Eagles to cover the touchdown against the Minnesota Vikings.
We don't have much of a sample size so far this season, but there is a trend I love here. Cousins has been atrocious in primetime games, specifically when he has had to play on the road.
The aging quarterback is just 4-12 as a visitor playing in primetime games as a Viking. We have the trend, the better team, better quarterback, and home-field advantage.
Pick: Philadelphia (-7)
Most Recent Thursday Night Football Picks
- Thursday Night Football Predictions: New York Giants at San Francisco 49ers
- NFL Thursday Night Football Picks: Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles
- Thursday Night Football Picks: Lions at Chiefs Week 1 Predictions
- Dallas Cowboys vs Tennessee Titans Prediction, 12/29/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 17
- Jacksonville Jaguars vs New York Jets Prediction, 12/22/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 16
- San Francisco 49ers vs Seattle Seahawks Prediction, 12/15/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 15
- Las Vegas Raiders vs Los Angeles Rams Prediction, 12/8/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 14
- Buffalo Bills vs New England Patriots Prediction, 12/1/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 13
- Buffalo Bills vs Detroit Lions Prediction, 11/24/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 12
- New England Patriots vs Minnesota Vikings Prediction, 11/24/2022 NFL Picks, Best Bets & Odds Week 12