Who’s Picking the Eagles: Week 9

DeMarco Murray. (USA Today Sports)

DeMarco Murray. (USA Today Sports)

The Eagles and the Cowboys square off Sunday night in a key NFC East matchup. Here’s how a sample of the media expect the game to play out.

Sports Illustrated’s Don Banks has the Eagles topping the Cowboys, 24-10.

The Eagles have the Cowboys right where they want them, meaning at home in Arlington. Dallas is 1–3 at AT&T Stadium this season, and that one win was gift-wrapped by the clock-bungling Giants on Sunday night of Week 1. Even last year, Dallas went just 4–4 at home to go along with that 8–0 road mark. And Philly has won two in a row in Dallas under coach Chip Kelly, including last year’s 33–10 rout on Thanksgiving. Overall, the road team has won five in a row and nine of 11 this season, and that includes the Cowboys’ Week 2 win at Lincoln Financial Field, in the game they lost Tony Romo.

I’d look for a solid game out of DeMarco Murray, who’s making his homecoming to Dallas. The Eagles running back has amends to make after that galling 13-carry, two-yard rushing day against the Cowboys in Week 2. A win gets the Eagles back to 2–2 in the division and helps bury desperate Dallas a little deeper in the NFC East.

NFL.com’s Eliot Harrison thinks Dallas’s defense propels the Cowboys to a season sweep, 17-14.

Dallas finally gets a W sans Tony Romo. Why? Because the Cowboys’ defense is balling. The Seahawks could barely get any offense going until the final drive last Sunday. Granted, Seattle’s offense sucks. Consider that the same Giants attack that put up 40-plus points in New Orleans scored all of one offensive touchdown — at home — against Big D’s D in Week 7. The return of Greg Hardy and Rolando McClain from suspension has bolstered the pass rush and the depth. Now, we should mention that this is the DeMarco Murray Revenge Game. Here it is.

Fox Sports’s Pete Schrager also gives Dallas the edge, 20-17, on the basis of the ‘Boys defense.

Greg Hardy played his best game as a Cowboy on Sunday, the offensive line has created holes for Darren McFadden in back-to-back weeks, and there was very little from the Seahawks receivers on Sunday. If the Cowboys could have gotten a little more from their quarterback position versus Seattle, they’d still be only a game out of first place.

I know this all sounds like a Pollyanna description of what might have been a painful watch for the viewer, but I can’t count Dallas out of this. Five straight losses. 2-5 record, and a listless offense. This is the week, folks. The ‘Boys find a way to stop the bleeding.

The guys at Pro Football Talk are split on the Texas-sized, Texas-based showdown.

MDS’s take: If Tony Romo were playing, I’d pick the Cowboys. I might even pick the Cowboys if Brandon Weeden were playing, given that Weeden played pretty well against the Eagles after Romo went down in Philadelphia. But with Matt Cassel at the helm? The Eagles will take this one.

MDS’s pick: Eagles 17, Cowboys 6.

Florio’s take: The Cowboys handled the Eagles in Week Two on their own field. Dallas hasn’t won since. With Dez Bryant a little healthier and the defense showing it knows how to slow down the Eagles, it’s time for the home team’s long-overdue Win No. 3.

Florio’s pick: Cowboys 27, Eagles 20.

Seven of ESPN’s 13 panelists give the Birds the advantage on Sunday night.