Philadelphia Eagles (5-7, 6-6 ATS) at New York Jets (3-8, 3-8), 1 p.m.
Brolley’s Eagles Stats and Trends
The Eagles had their two-game ATS win streak snapped last week.
Jalen Hurts ran for 55+ yards for a sixth consecutive game last week, but he had a career-worst game as a passer in their ugly loss to the Giants. He completed just 45.2% of his passes for just 4.2 YPA with three INTs in Philadelphia’s seven-point offensive effort against New York. Even with his miserable performance, Hurts put the ball in Jalen Reagor’s hands near the end zone on the potential game-winning drive, but the 2020 first-round pick bobbled away the fourth-down pass. He’s now fallen below 20+ FP in four of his last five contests. Hurts is dealing with an ankle injury this week, which could limit his running some this week. The Jets have given up 2+ TDs to seven straight quarterbacks.
Hurts attempted 31 passes last week, which was the first time he’s attempted more than 25+ passes since Week 7, yet DeVonta Smith saw just four targets (14% share) with the likes of Jalen Reagor (7) and Quez Watkins (5) seeing more targets. The Eagles should get back to a run-heavy approach against one of the league’s worst run defenses, and the Jets are facing the fourth-fewest (17.9) WR targets this season.
- Dallas Goedert had seen a position-best 32% target share in Week 8-11 before seeing just three targets (10% share) for a one catch, which went for no gain. He’s now finished with fewer than eight FP in three of his last four contests. Rookie Brevin Jordan posted 3/23/1 receiving in this matchup last week, and the Jets are giving up the sixth-most receiving yards (60.4) to TEs this season.
- With Jordan Howard (knee) out last week, Miles Sanders was in a two-man committee with Boston Scott before tweaking his ankle on his best run of the day in the second half. He finished with 9/64 rushing on 33% of the snaps while Scott finished with a backfield-best 15/64/1 rushing and 2/8 receiving on 51% of the snaps. Howard was used as the 1B runner behind Sanders in Week 11, racking up 10/63 rushing before a knee injury knocked him out of the game in the third quarter. The backfield order for now appears to be Sanders, Howard, Scott, and Gainwell, and we’ll need to follow the injury report this week to see if Sanders and/or Howard can play. The Jets have been the premier matchup for RBs all season long, allowing a league-high 35.8 FPG to the position.
Brolley’s Jets Stats and Trends
The Jets are an NFL-worst 3-8 ATS despite last week’s outright win and cover against the Texans.
Zach Wilson took back the starting job in Week 12 after missing four games for a knee injury, and he looked like the same quarterback from before his injury. He completed 14/24 passes for 145 yards (6.0 YPA) and one INTs and he added a rushing TD in New York’s victory over the Texans. Wilson hasn’t thrown for a TD in five of his first seven starts and he’s averaging just 6.4 YPA. Daniel Jones managed 201/1 passing for 15.1 FP in this matchup last week.
Elijah Moore saw a season-high 88% snap share and he saw 8+ targets for the third time in four games, but he had his run of double-digit FP snapped with Wilson returning to the lineup. Keelan Cole (COVID) and Corey Davis (groin) are both in a race to get ready this week, so there’s a good chance Moore maintains his massive role if one or both of them misses. Davis had his second-worst fantasy performance in Week 11 in Joe Flacco’’s first start, posting 3/35 receiving for 6.5 FP. He had two 20+ FP performances and three performances with fewer than 10 FP in Wilson’s five full games. The Eagles are giving up the third-fewest FPG (28.0) to WRs this season.
The Jets rolled out an ugly three-man backfield with Michael Carter (ankle) hitting the injured reserve before Week 12. Tevin Coleman led the backfield with 45% snap share and 18/70 scrimmage in a rare, mostly positive gamescript against the Texans in Week 12. Ty Johnson followed him with a 34% snap share and 6/42 rushing without a catch, while the previously unknown Austin Walter saw a 24% snap share and 9/38/1 rushing. Johnson is in the best shape this week with the Jets entering as seven-point home underdogs, and the Eagles are giving up the fifth-most receptions per game (6.7) to RBs.
Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies
Pace (seconds in between plays): 27.1 (10th)
Plays per game: 62.6 (16th)
Pass: 46.2% (32nd) | Run: 53.8% (1st)
Pace: 28.5 (21st)
Plays per game: 65.3 (8th)
Pass: 67.5% (3rd) | Run: 32.5% (30th)
All pace / play data is from the last eight weeks.
Regardless of whether or not Jalen Hurts is 100%, the Eagles are going to do what they do here: Run the damn ball. Especially since Hurts is coming off such a terrible start, we’re going to see HC Nick Sirriani come out and get Miles Sanders going here against this Jets run defense that is giving up the second-most YPC (4.89) and the most rushing fantasy points per game (23.0) to RBs over the last eight weeks.
The Jets came out and ran the ball a ton last week in Zach Wilson’s first start since Week 7, as OC Mike LaFleur went 59% run-heavy on early-downs against the Texans. Unsurprisingly, their offensive approach was very conservative as 19 of Wilson’s 24 passes traveled less than 10 air yards in Week 12. Of course, this comes with the caveat that they probably won’t be able to play that way as massive touchdown underdogs here. I’m fully fading the Jets and treating the Eagles like the No. 1 D/ST play on the slate.
Huber’s Key Matchup Notes
We all know how this one’s going to play out. The Jets are coming off an unexpected victory over the Texans. New York has strung together consecutive wins six times during their last six seasons (96 total games). And an argument can be made that the current demonstration of “full rebuild mode” is on par with the 2020 version.
Anyhow, we’re going to see the Eagles put up 30-plus points on the defense conceding the most FPG to entire opposing offenses (103.0) this season, over the last four games (105.1). On the field for 89% of team routes, it’s literally only a matter of time before Dallas Goedert explodes. The Jets are ceding the ninth-most FPG to TEs (14.1).
For the Jets, it’s simple. If Corey Davis plays, we should fade him across from Darius Slay. If he sits, we fade Denzel Mims for the same reason.
Dolan’s Vantage Points
The Eagles played a god-awful game last week, in which QB Jalen Hurts couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn. To be fair to Hurts, throwing at the broad side of a barn would have been more effective than throwing it to Jalen Reagor.
Have yourself a day, Jalen Reagor!pic.twitter.com/vPzjuRXBlE— Barstool Philly (@BarstoolPhilly) November 28, 2021
Jalen Hurts QBR this season— Paul Hembekides (@PaulHembo) December 2, 2021
Targeting Jalen Reagor (5.8)
Targeting all others (65.6)
No player in the NFL is sabotaging his QB more than Reagor is.
Coach Nick Sirianni said this week he hasn’t thought about benching Reagor, but my hunch is we might get a squeaky wheel game for DeVonta Smith anyway. Reagor dropped — ironically — maybe Hurts’ two best throws of the day on what would have been potential game-winning TDs. Smith was visibly frustrated on the field, and one thing that we have learned this year is that the “squeaky wheel” narrative is sometimes worth chasing. But it’s also worth noting that Hurts can be erratic as a passer, and with the Eagles still possessing one of the NFL’s most lethal ground games, there will be days like this for Smith. It’s good to see him running wide-ass open, but he needs to get the ball. Fortunately, this game completely disincentivizes the Eagles from trying to get it to Reagor.
DeVonta Smith livid as he came off the field. Threw his helmet to the bench. Wanted the ball. Was open. Never saw a target on the #Eagles' final two drives.— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) November 28, 2021
Lost in the Eagles losing the turnover battle 4-0 against the Giants last week is that they still ran for over 200 yards, despite Miles Sanders getting dinged. Sanders had a strong game in Week 12 by the numbers, posting 9/64 rushing against the Giants, but he appeared to tweak the ankle injury that landed him on IR a few weeks back, and though he came back into the game, he split work with Kenny Gainwell and Boston Scott. Despite the Eagles’ awful performance offensively with four turnovers, they still ran the living hell out of the ball, grinding up the Giants for 208 yards on the ground, and if Sanders didn’t get a little dinged, he had a shot to go for over 100 yards. Sanders played just 33% of the snaps offensively compared to 51% for Scott and 16% for Gainwell, and it appears the Eagles trust Scott most of the trio at the goal line. Given QB Hurts also has massive TD equity in goal-line situations, Sanders is likely going to need a bigger share of the pie to be a true fantasy asset. It just doesn’t look like he’s going to get it, even if he can play this week. It’s a great matchup, though, against FootballOutsiders’ third-worst run defense by DVOA.
Both Hurts and Sanders, by the way, expect to play through their respective ankle injuries, though it appears Hurts is much more up in the air. Meanwhile, Scott is also questionable with an illness.
#Eagles coach Nick Sirianni says QB Jalen Hurts is questionable and, with 48 hours to “let the body heal,” it’s “still an unknown” whether he’s playing.
The team has been much more cautious about this one than Hurts, though my expectation is he’ll play vs. the #Jets.
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) December 3, 2021
Miles Sanders says he believes he will play Sunday. Says his ankle feels good and trying to get it better. pic.twitter.com/ii8pdKMByJ— Chris Franklin (@cfranklinnews) December 2, 2021
If Hurts doesn’t play, Gardner Minshew would start, and the Eagles would lean on the pass more. That would actually be good news for Smith and Goedert.
The Jets got rookie QB Zach Wilson back from a knee injury last week, but as we feared, it really took the volume down on their offense, which affected the one guy we’re really interested in — rookie Elijah Moore.
Moore got a team-high 8 targets from Wilson, but the aDOT on those looks was just 6.3 yards.
But Wilson is averaging 32.5 pass attempts per game in his six full games, while the Jets have averaged 45.8 in the games he hasn’t played. Keep in mind Wilson is also taking sacks at a prodigious rate, 10.1% of his dropbacks, which certainly affects this passing game as well. Moore’s usage is a positive, but everything else was a step in the wrong direction in this game.
Davis looks iffy to go again this week, while the Jets put Cole on the COVID list, while taking Denzel Mims off it. Against a pissed-off Eagle defense that’s playing very well, this doesn’t project as much of a fantasy game for the Jets. Davis, by the way, is a game-time decision.