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Eagles vs. Falcons: Predictions, odds and broadcast info for divisional round of NFL playoffs

ess than 24 hours from kickoff at Lincoln Financial Field, there’s little left to write about Saturday’s NFL divisional round game between the Eagles and Falcons. Every angle has been covered, and I know this because earlier I read a story about who would win in a fight between an actual eagle and an actual falcon.Now, in the time left before the Birds’ first playoff game since 2014, there’s nothing left to do but wait … and decide which team we think is going to advance to the NFC Championship Game.

You all know that the Eagles are home underdogs against the defending NFC champs – unless, of course, they’re not – and how the team has rallied behind that in the days leading up to their playoff opener. Whether or not that makes a difference come game time remains to be seen, but if our staff predictions are any indication, that us-against-the-world mentality might work out just fine for Doug Pederson’s team.

Here’s what you need to know for Saturday’s game, and how we see things playing out in South Philly.

• GAME INFO •
NFL PLAYOFFS: NFC DIVISIONAL ROUND
Eagles (13-3) vs. Falcons (10-6)
Saturday, 4:35 p.m. ET | Lincoln Financial Field

BROADCAST INFO
TV: NBC | RADIO: 94.1 WIP

BETTING LINES
SPREAD: Falcons (-3) | TOTAL: 41.5 (via Bovada)

• PREDICTIONS •
Earlier on Friday, we took a look at how other local and national writers see this week’s game playing out. You can check that out, here.

Jimmy Kempski
@JimmyKempski | Email | Stories
PICK: Falcons 24, Eagles 14
Prior to the season, the definitive strength of Eagles’ roster was the defensive line, until it became Carson Wentz. Now it’s the D-line once again. If Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan, Vinny Curry, Chris Long, Derek Barnett, and Beau Allen can control the line of scrimmage in the run game while consistently getting in the face of Matt Ryan in the passing game, they can create turnovers, making it easier on the offense.

Offensively, the Eagles’ line is the clear strength. They need to find ways to open up running lanes against packed boxes while providing great protection for a quarterback who can’t function without it.

Make no mistake, the Eagles are better in the trenches, and as such, they can win this game. Still, for me, I just can’t get past the fact that heading into this matchup, the difference in quarterback play drastically favors the Falcons, and that’s going to be very difficult to overcome.

Please don’t harm my family.

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