NFL playoff predictions: Saints vs. Eagles

NFL playoff predictions: Saints vs. Eagles
January 3, 2014, 3:45 pm
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Although the Redskins are spectators in this year’s NFL playoffs, we know you’ll still be watching. So let’s have some fun predicting the outcomes, shall we? Here’s how Redskins Insiders Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler see the games unfolding:

Saints at Eagles
Saturday, 8:10, NBC
Eagles favored by 3

Tandler: This one is simple, right? The Saints can’t play outdoors (2-4 in the elements) and with the temperatures in the 20’s at kickoff and dropping as the game goes on the home team rolls to an easy win. Not so fast. The Saints have a defense this year (ranked 4th) and a good D can win in any weather. Philly QB Nick Foles, who went to high school in Austin, Texas and went to Arizona, is not exactly a snow bunny himself. Drew Brees will find a way to get it done. Saints 24, Eagles 17

El-Bashir: I may turn out to be completely wrong on this hunch, but here it goes … I actually like the Eagles to do some damage in this year’s playoffs. Chip Kelly’s crew won seven of their last eight games, including a clutch victory in Dallas to secure the NFC East crown. They’ve got one of the league’s hottest quarterbacks (Nick Foles) and some of the game’s most dangerous weapons on offense (LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson and Riley Cooper). But that’s not the biggest reason I believe they’ve got a chance to make a run. It’s their much-improved defense under coordinator Bill Davis. In the five games since the Eagles’ bye, the DeMeco Ryans-led unit limited opponents to an average of 74.4 yards on the ground and forced 12 turnovers. All good teams possess balance. And right now, the Eagles certainly have it. Eagles 28, Saints 20