Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce wears a mask as he...

Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce wears a mask as he celebrates after their victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Oct. 30, 2022. Credit: AP/Derik Hamilton


TV: Amazon Prime, 8:15 p.m.

The Line: Philadelphia by 14; O/U: 45.5

There are two schools of thought when presented with a point spread this big: Take the points no matter the matchup because anything can happen in the unpredictable NFL, or lay the big number because, hey, there’s a reason the number is this high. When looking at this matchup between a top-3 team vs. a bottom-3 team (and you can make the argument that this is No. 1 vs. No. 32), I side with the “lay the points” crowd.

Favorites of 10 or more points this season are only 3-4 against the spread (ATS), but that includes Philadelphia’s 35-13 win over Pittsburgh last week as a 10.5-point favorite. The biggest thing to worry about when the spread is this big is the backdoor cover. Still, do you really want to be rooting for a Texans touchdown at around 11 p.m. when the Eagles are up by 17-20 points?

But will the Eagles (5-2 ATS) be up for this game against the lowly Texans (3-4 ATS)? Here’s a few reasons why I think they will be: For starters, they’re the only unbeaten team in the NFL, and there’s no way they want their first loss to be to a  one-win team on the national stage. Secondly, Jalen Hurts, the Eagles’ dual-threat, MVP-candidate quarterback is from Houston and he will be pumped for this game.  Thirdly, the Eagles don’t gift opponents with chances. For a team like the Texans to keep this close, they’d need to win the turnover battle. The Eagles have committed just two turnovers (TWO!) all season and lead the NFL in turnover margin (+14).

Houston has played tough in most of its games this season before the better team pulls away in the second half. That won’t happen this time, as the high-powered Eagles will take a big lead early and dominate. Remember, there’s a reason the spread is this big.

The pick: Philadelphia

Staff Picks

Tom Rock: Philadelphia

Al Iannazzone: Philadelphia

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