Several home teams are getting points in NFL Week 11, and this week’s Home Dog Alert includes the Philadelphia Eagles, Tampa Bay Bucs, Miami Dolphins, Detroit Lions, and the LA Chargers on Monday Night Football in Mexico City. The Eagles face their biggest test of the season in a rematch of Super Bowl LII against the New England Patriots.
The Eagles (5-4) host the Patriots (8-1) fresh off a bye week and a loss, which means coach Bill Belichick will have his Pats prepared to bust heads in Philly. The Eagles are currently in playoff mode because they can’t afford to lose any more home games, especially non-conference home games like the Patriots.
The Cowboys and Eagles are both 5-4 in a tight NFC playoff race. The winner of the NFC East will advance to the postseason, while second place will end up bubbling the playoffs.
HOME DOG ALERT – NFL WEEK 11
Philadelphia Eagles +4
Tampa Bay Bucs +5.5
Miami Dolphins +6.5
Detroit Lions +7
LA Chargers +4
The LA Chargers (4-6) are a struggling team that’s fast on the mend. With the Kansas Chiefs (6-4) faltering, the AFC West title is up for grabs. It’s a two-horse race, unless the Chargers can pull off a huge division win on Monday Night Football in this year’s game in Mexico City.
During NFL Week 10, home dogs went 3-1 and underdogs finished 9-4 against the spread.
Philadelphia Eagles +4 and Patriots SB Rematch
The Patriots and their untouchable defense started out 8-0. Then, they ran into Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens. Now, the Patriots face a healthy Carson Wentz, and a running back by committee for the Eagles.
The Eagles won two in a row to get over .500, and correct a ship that ran off course. If the Eagles can effectively run the ball with their tandem of Jordan Howard and rookie Miles Sanders, then they have a shot at picking off the Pats. But, good luck with that. The Pats are allowing only 10.9 points per game this season. Throw out the Ravens game, and that number falls to 8.9 ppg.
Belichick isn’t the type of coach who immediately fixes a leaky faucet. During the bye week, Belichick plugged any gaps in his run defense after Jackson and Mark Ingram ran down their throats in Week 9. The narratives surrounding this Patriots and Eagles game makes it sound like it’s going to be a close one, but this matchup also has blowout potential for Tom Brady and Belichick.
Brady loves a good grudge, and still has the loss to the Eagles in Super Bowl 52 on his mind.
“That’s a lot of mental scar tissue from that year,” Brady told Boston media. “That was a tough game. In a lot of ways, we learned from that year and we came back stronger the next year.”
Both current squads look vastly different from the two teams that met in Super Bowl 52. The Eagles and Patriots are coming off a bye week, so both teams are well-rested.
Tampa Bay Bucs +5.5
If “Good” Jameis Winston shows up, then this will be a heck of a game to watch from a fan’s perspective. When Winston fails to protect the ball and throws errant passes, however, the interceptions pile up, and the Bucs go off the rails.
The Bucs (3-6) are catching the Saints (7-2) coming off one of their worst games in the last two seasons. Drew Brees and the stagnant offense looked like they were running in quicksand during a shocking loss to the Atlanta Falcons.
Bruce Arians’ squad boasts the league’s third-best offense, averaging 28.9 points per game, but the Bucs have a horrendous defense, allowing 31.0 points per game. The Bucs are the personification of the old saying, “Who needs a defense when you have a great offense.”
With the Saints offense slumping, they can’t wait to get to Tampa and face a porous defense. This will probably be one of those games in which the team with the ball last in the fourth quarter will win the game on the final possession.
The Bucs are 2-7 ATS this season, and are 0-5 ATS in their last five games. The over is 7-0 in the last seven games for the Bucs.
Miami Dolphins +6.5
It’s no shocker that the Dolphins are a home dog once again in NFL Week 11.
Only the Fish (2-7) are bad at tanking. They won two games in a row after picking off the LOLJets and the banged-up Indianapolis Colts. Then again, if the Colts didn’t have kicking woes with an erratic Adam Vinatieri, the Fish would only be 1-8.
The Bills (6-3) started out hot at 5-1, but are 1-2 in their last three games. The Bills posted losses against the Eagles and the Cleveland Browns, and a win against the Redskins. You can make a strong argument that the Bills should have won those games to be 8-1, and tied for first place in the AFC East with the Patriots.
The Bills kicked off the season with an impressive 4-1 clip against the spread, but they’re 1-2-1 ATS in their last four games. After starting out 0-4 ATS, the Dolphins have recently gone 5-0 against the spread.
Detroit Lions +7
Matt Stafford (broken bones in his back) is expected to miss another game for the Lions (3-5). The Lions are also missing star RB Kerryon Johnson. If the Cowboys weren’t also struggling, the Lions would be home dog by a touchdown or more.
The streaky Cowboys (5-4) lost three in a row earlier this season, including a loss to the lowly LOLJets. The Cowboys had a two-game winning streak snapped in Week 10 when they lost big home game to the Minnesota Vikings, who held Zeke Elliot to just 47 yards on 20 attempts.
If the Lions had Stafford and Johnson, they’d have enough firepower to catch the Cowboys looking ahead to next week’s matchup against the New England Patriots. At the same time, the Patriots have to make sure they don’t overlook the Eagles with the Dallas game looming.
LA Chargers +4
This Monday Night Football contest in NFL Week 11 is also an AFC West division game that will be hosted in Mexico City. The Chargers don’t have anything close to a home-field advantage (2-3 in LA), because home games have become a friendly environment for opposing fans.
As bad as things have been with the Chargers (4-6), they’re still a live dog in the AFC West race after the KC Chiefs went 2-4 in their last six games. The banged-up Chiefs have to fend off the upstart Oakland Raiders (5-4), but they can’t overlook the Chargers.
Patrick Mahomes isn’t 100% between a lingering ankle injury and a dislocated kneecap. He still threw for 400-plus yards and three touchdowns in his first game back, but the Chiefs lost an ugly game, 35-32, to the Tennessee Titans.
The Chiefs are 4-1 on the road this season and have problems on defense, which is why the over is 3-0 in the last three games, and hit in six out of KC’s last eight games.
The Chargers live and die by the running game. If Melvin Gordon and company can jump-start the sluggish rushing attack (ranked #28 in the NFL at 86.1 yards per game), then Phil Rivers won’t have to do all the work by himself.
The Chargers play close games. Eight out of 10 games this season were decided by one score or less. And, the other two? The Chargers won both of those games by double digits.
Even when the Chargers are crushing it, they’ll find a way to blow the lead in the second half. And when you think the Chargers are dunzo, Rivers engineers an improbable comeback.