Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson is a now prop bet.
Only in the NJ sports betting world can a fired head coach spark betting. Pederson, canned by the Eagles one day and a futures wager the next, headlines our weekly Football Five.
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Who will coach the Eagles? Look at the Jets first
Where the Jets go will influence where the Eagles direct their efforts.
Following his firing, Pederson became the frontrunner (+300) for the Jets job at FanDuel Sportsbook. As of early Wednesday morning, his odds shifted to +650 as San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh moved into the top spot (+100).
Here is a look at the FanDuel odds on the next Jets head coach as of Tuesday.
If Pederson gains that position, Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll (+850) and Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy (+850) become available for Philadelphia. Both were the early favorites for the Jets job.
Other notable rumors for the Eagles include Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith, Tampa Bay Bucs defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, and Saleh, a name worth a long look.
Saleh, a defensive coordinator, has already become a finalist for the Jets job. It’s only been a question of when, not if, he becomes a head coach. The Jets may be a more natural fit for him, but the Eagles could use someone to light a fire under the entire team.
Bieniemy, the offensive coordinator for the Chiefs, is another assistant likely to land a head-coaching position. Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie likes Andy Reid’s input, that’s how he got Pederson in the first place, so Bieniemy makes sense. But other teams want him as well.
Then there is Bowles. Remember him?
He had three straight losing seasons with the Jets. How crazy would it be for the Eagles to select the former Jets coach and the Jets to recycle Pederson? Can’t find a prop for that.
Bowles also was the secondary coach for the Birds in 2012.
Eagles will likely interview Duce Staley, too
There’s a common denominator with the candidates. Philadelphia’s long-term contract with quarterback Carson Wentz is a lasso around the neck of whomever takes the job. The Eagles are committed to Wentz and the new coach will experience friction if he wants to bench Wentz at some point.
The successful candidate must be on board with Wentz, who regressed badly this past season but was also left vulnerable by a weak offensive line. What the odds can’t tell you is what candidate will accept this stipulation.
Expect Duce Staley’s name to be included on the list of interview candidates. The former Eagles player served as assistant head coach and running backs coach under Pederson.
Stay tuned. Rumors, and odds, change often.
What about the NFL Divisional Playoff odds?
The NFL Playoffs resume Saturday and Sunday with the final eight teams competing in the divisional round. Here is the weekend slate:
Early splits from DraftKings Sportsbook show the public loves all four “overs,” with the Cleveland-Kansas City game getting the highest endorsement 89%, even at the highest total, 56.5.
Early betting saw the public loving Green Bay the most. Here’s the support level:
- Green Bay 84%
- Buffalo 61%
- Kansas City 60%
- Tampa Bay 59%
Rams are the NFL chameleons
They do the unexpected.
The Los Angeles Rams flopped as a 17-point favorite and became the first team the Jets beat this year. And then they toppled the Seattle Seahawks, who had beaten the Jets by 37 points, in the Wild Card round.
Just to reach the postseason they defeated the Arizona Cardinals behind backup quarterback John Wolford.
The Rams defense turned that game around with a late first-half defensive score.
And they repeated the feat against the Seahawks. A Pick 6 put Seattle up 13-3 and Jared Goff, who had to replace the injured Wolford, gutted out an efficient performance.
Can the Rams do it again?
They face Aaron Rodgers, enjoying the best year of his life with 48 touchdowns versus five interceptions. The Rams want ball control, the Packers a track meet.
Weather is always a big variable in cold-weather cities. The forecast for this game is under 30 degrees, with winds at less than 10 mph. May feel like 20 degrees. For the Rams, it could have been worse.
Bills and Ravens look good on either side
The Bills opened at -1.5 across the major NJ online sportsbooks and early Buffalo wagering pushed the line up to -2.5. This is still a nice place to bet either team. Ravens bettors may click their heels if the line hits -3. Even the move from -1.5 to -2.5 might make it worth their while to buy the extra point, taking a +3 line.
Lamar Jackson is one key to the game.
The Ravens quarterback rushed for 136 yards in the team’s opening-round triumph over the Tennessee Titans. He also helped rally the team from a 10-0 early deficit.
In avenging the playoff loss to the Titans from last year, the Ravens continued to look formidable.
Buffalo’s defense gave up 472 yards in a narrow victory over the Indianapolis Colts, who crossed the 50-yard line on nine of their 10 possessions and averaged more than six yards per play.
Baltimore’s defense, on the other hand, has stepped up dramatically and is the biggest wild card in this matchup. How about holding the Cincinnati Bengals to three points and then putting a handcuff on Derrick Henry and the Titans? Henry was coming off a 200-plus yard game and the Ravens kept him to 40.
In this game, Buffalo’s offensive line looks to protect Josh Allen enough for him to launch downfield throws to Stefon Diggs and to scramble. Buffalo does not rely on its running game the way Tennessee did.
All ‘Bs’: Brady + Brees = bets
You have to love the marquee. Tom Brady’s best work of the season has come in the last five games, in which the Tampa Bay offensive line has given him tremendous time to throw. Brady has more receiving targets than Drew Brees does for the New Orleans Saints.
It’s been the same pregame script every time these teams met this year. Brady was supposed to lead the Bucs over the Saints, and New Orleans beat him in the opener. Brady was rolling before the rematch and the Bucs, at -5, were never in it.
And here we go again.
Can the Saints beat the Bucs three times in one year? They will need a big game from Alvin Kamara and Brees will have to throw deep once in a while to keep the defense honest.
Will Super Bowl champs stop the Cleveland Browns party?
It’s been great for Cleveland Browns fans, who watched their team topple the Pittsburgh Steelers twice in eight days. But now they visit the defending Super Bowl champions, who lost only one game this year.
The Browns optimist believes the team’s momentum from the Pittsburgh triumph snowballs into another upset. Cleveland backers bank on the usual stellar effort from Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. The subplot will be whether Kansas City should have kept Hunt, who broke in with them.
The Chiefs backer believes they won’t commit the mistakes that brought Cleveland that early 28-0 lead against the Steelers and that the Chiefs won’t be rusty despite the offense resting in the last regular season game.
A shootout is expected and the Chiefs, on paper, have a little more ammunition in their gun.
AP Photo/Michael Perez