NFL 2019 Season - Off
 

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Deja Vu
by Dennis Ranahan

Does the site of the Los Angeles Rams home field send shivers down the spin of the Philadelphia Eagles, or mark the spot that Nick Foles took over for an injured Carson Wentz and led Doug Pederson’s squad to their only Super Bowl win in franchise history?

Well, as Yogi Berra might have said, “It’s Deja Vu all over again.”

This is the site last December when the Eagles then second-year quarterback had his path to the league’s Most Valuable Player derailed by a season ending injury. It had been a special season for the young quarterback out of North Dakota State University, evidenced further by him providing the key punch in securing home field advantage in the playoffs with a winning touchdown run after he was injured.

When Wentz went down, the City of Brotherly Love only had far reaching hopes that the team that seemed to be on their way to their first ever Super Bowl win could still achieve that goal without their star quarterback. But, as we all know, Foles had a magical run that would land him on the cover of Sports Illustrated celebrating the Eagles Super Bowl LIII win over the New England Patriots.

Most often, after a team has a season where everything falls their way, the following year is dismal. This usually includes problems in both their straight-up record, but even more dramatically, against the point spread. The Eagles have fit this bill to a tee, they are 6 and 7 straight-up in 2018, with only four point spread wins in 13 decisions.

Now they are back in Los Angeles, a season after they won on this field and a week after their final hopes for a divisional title were dashed with last Sunday’s overtime loss to the Cowboys in Dallas. Foles steps back behind center looking again to spin gold from yarn in the final month of the season.

Know what the chances are of the Eagles catching fire this year during the final three weeks of the season with Foles back behind center?

If there was a factor available of less than zero, this would qualify for that elite category.

The Rams didn’t finish in the Super Bowl last year, and they have stiff competition to win it all this year, but the competition for a Super Bowl title is no longer provided by the Eagles. In fact, what the Eagles are here is akin to the role played by the Washington Generals in a game against the Harlem Globetrotters.

The Rams can win this one, and will win this one, absolutely. No possibility of any other result than a Rams win tonight.

The books know it, the bettors know it, and the players know it too.

You would think all that knowing would make the Rams a great play tonight, but too much knowing is also subject to getting clipped on the point spread that has shifted from the Eagles being overrated to underrated on the point spread.

I don’t want the Eagles tonight, but I’m not laying two touchdowns for the joy of having the better team, at home, poised for an easy win.

Too easy, and not a money rated wager by my methods.