Guess who else was impressed with the Eagles’ opening touchdown drive against the Jets?
BetMGM increased the Eagles’ total win projection this week. The Eagles went from 8.5 wins to 9.5 wins.
The Commanders also moved up — going from 7.5 to 8.5.
Our friends in Dallas are attracting the wrong kind of attention. The Cowboys (10.5 wins) and Bears (6.5 wins) have received the most “under” bets at BetMGM.
The most money is being wagered on the Lions, the stars of HBO’s “Hard Knocks.” The Lions’ total win number is 6.5 and the money pouring in on the “over.” Perhaps those betting the Lions are enthralled by fiery coach Dan Campbell, an early star on the show.
The Eagles open the regular season in Detroit on Sept. 11.
The other heavy action is on “over” for the Saints (8.5), Steelers (7.5) and Dolphins (8.5).
WHAT’S DIFFERENT ABOUT JALEN HURTS THIS SEASON?
Eagles coach Nick Sirianni was interviewed by the NFL Network in Berea, Ohio, before his team’s workouts with the Cleveland Browns. What is different about his quarterback this season?
Sirianni talked more about the team concept and Hurts’ familiarity with the offense.
“I think just the confidence in the plays that we’re running and the offense that we’re running,” Sirianni said.
“That’s a two-way street. That’s us running the plays that we know he’s comfortable with and him telling us the plays he is comfortable with.
“I see it as more comfort with the plays that are going on, the decisions are happening quick because of the comfort level.”
Sirianni also talked about how Hurts is gaining experience each day.
“You see this with … quarterbacks around the league,” Sirianni said. “There are quarterbacks who played into the late-30s, into their 40s and they seemingly get better at getting the ball out of their hands as they go.
“Why? They’ve seen everything. They’ve seen this play verse Cover-2, or this play verse Cover-3 a hundred times, a million times, and they just have that innate ability to know where to go with the football.
“That’s the same thing that Jalen’s growing. Now, he’s 24 and doesn’t have the reps that those guys have but more and more each day as you run a play that’s just another one in his memory bank that’s only going to help him.
“Jalen’s the type of guy that really cares about football, and loves football, and he’s going to naturally succeed and reach his ceiling because of that.”
What Sirianni says makes sense, given the reports that Hurts is the first guy to arrive at the NovaCare training facility and last guy to leave.
PASCAL: EAGLES’ OFFENSE ALL DETAILS
Eagles wide receiver Zach Pascal arrived in the offseason after four years in Indianapolis.
At a recent news conference, he compared the Eagles offense with the Colts.
“It’s all about details, details, details [with the Eagles],” Pascal said. “If we lock in on the details, a lot of big plays can be made.
“I’m not saying that we didn’t focus on details in my other offense but this is like a major, major, major key, the details splits on where we line up. The depth on the yardage.
“Everything is for the quarterback so we gotta get in the vision of the quarterback.”
SPEAKING OF THE QUARTERBACK …
Pascal was asked about quarterback Jalen Hurts’ ability to throw the deep ball, a point of criticism the past few years.
“Since I got here, his deep-ball accuracy’s been amazing,” Pascal said. “A lot of his throws have been accurate.
“I’ve seen him getting better every day and the work ethic he puts into that it just trickles down to the whole team and everybody else putting in work.
“We have a lot of fast guys, a lot of fast receivers, even the tight end. So it’ll always be a weapon for us if we connect and get it right.”
LOOKING AT DEFENSE
As offensive coordinator, Shane Steichen gets a good look at the Eagles’ defense. He was asked if there’s a guy who has stood out.
“There are a lot of guys that stand out. We’ve got a really good defense,” Steichen said. “The DBs: [cornerback Darius] Slay, [cornerback James] Bradberry has been a nice addition; he’s a really smart, veteran player.
“You go against these guys Slay and Bradberry every day in practice … they know our demeanor and they know the receivers’ demeanor. It helps us.
“And those guys are talking day-in and day-out. [Defensive tackle] Jordan Davis, you can see him improving every single day what he’s doing defensively. He’s a huge human being and he’s been really good inside on defense. He stood out.”
CONGRATS TO THE ERTZ FAMILY
Zach and Julie Ertz welcomed their first child into the world last week. They named their son Madden, about the coolest name imaginable for a Super Bowl champion dad.
“One week with our sweet boy!” Zach Ertz wrote on Instagram with a photo of the newborn. “Madden Matthew Ertz, you are so loved. Beyond grateful to be your dad. @JulieErtz and I can’t even put into words how blessed we are to be your parents.”