Greg Cote

NFL defending champion Eagles open at home Thursday, but here’s why it could be trouble

Super Bowl champion Eagles parade through the streets of Philadelphia

The town of Philadelphia showed up in full force to support the Eagles during the Super Bowl parade.
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The town of Philadelphia showed up in full force to support the Eagles during the Super Bowl parade.

What we’ve all been eagerly awaiting finally rolls out Thursday night as the 2018 NFL regular season unfurls.

Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles? Well, yeah, I guess that, too, now that you mention it But I meant the controversial Nike Colin Kaepernick ad that will air during the game unless Donald Trump signs an emergency executive order temporarily abolishing TV.

This commences King Sport’s 99th season and (believe it or don’t) my 28th predicting games in the Miami Herald. Find our picks online every Thursday and in print every Friday beginning this week. Now let’s klck this thing off!

FALCONS (0-0) at EAGLES (0-0)

Line: PHI by 1 1/2

Cote’s pick: ATL, 24-20

TV: 8:20 p.m., NBC.

It has become a tradition that the reigning league champion hosts and lifts the Thursday night lid on the new season,. but this matchup of NFC powers won’t be easy for Philly — especially with QB Carson Wentz (right knee) not yet able to play. Granted, the backup happens to be the Super Bowl MVP in Nick Foles. But it’s still a sizable dropoff. Falcons are healthier overall coming into this, especially on offense, and I see Matt Ryan’s O-line staving off a very good Eagles defensive front and keeping his pocket clean. Y’all know what that means, right? Correct. Upset!

NOTE: The Miami Herald is now offering a digital sports-only subscription for $30 per year. This is unlimited access to all Herald sports stories, thus allowing you to comment in the section below as many times as you wish. Click right here to get started immediately.

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