Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 10/26/12
Atlanta Falcons @ Philadelphia EaglesAtlanta:  Coming off their bye week, the Falcons sort of slept walked through their week 7 game at home against the Raiders, and it took a last minute score to avoid overtime and squeak out the win.  This week, expect the Falcons to be more prepared in playing against a dangerous Eagles team.Matt Ryan has been very good this season, although last week he looked much more mortal.  Now, he’ll be faced off against a fairly decent pass defense (15th in the league) which sports some of the better corners in the NFL.  Fortunately, he also has two of the best receivers in the NFL in Julio Jones and Roddy White. The strange thing about Jones is he’s been terrible stat-wise at home, while being lights out on the road.  That may be tested here, as it’s likely he’ll draw Nnamdi Asomugha in coverage, which will be the best corner he’s faced on the road this year.  However, with his propensity for scoring big on the road, he still is a must start.  Roddy White on the other hand has been fairly consistent on the road and at home, and is another every week starter.  Same goes for Tony Gonzalez, who has been fantasy’s #1 TE in most formats on a per game basis.The Eagles actually rank slightly better at defending the run (13th versus the rush), and being on the road as well makes Michael Turner not the greatest play this week.  Still, he does get starter carries and will always be a threat around the goal line, so if you have him you probably will have to plug him in with so many bye weeks happening in Week 8.Good Start:  QB Matt Ryan, WR Julio Jones, WR Roddy White, TE Tony GonzalezMiddle of the Road:  RB Michael TurnerBad Start:  RB Jacquizz Rodgers, WR Harry Douglas Philadelphia Eagles:  The Eagles come out of their bye week after tough loss at home to the Detroit Lions in Week 6, a team that for the most part has looked terrible all year.  The fact that Michael Vick couldn’t put the Lions away has raised the question of whether or not he should remain the starting QB, and if Andy Reid is indeed on the hot seat.Of course, the games don’t get any easier out of the bye week with the undefeated Atlanta Falcons coming to town.  The Falcons are the best team the Eagles have faced this year, and are the complete package on offense and defense.  Vick will probably find it tough going against the 11th ranked pass defense, and with the Falcons near the top of the league with a +10 give/take ratio, that spells bad news for the turnover prone Vick, who has 11 turnovers on his own already.Desean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin are likely in for tough games as well, as the Falcons do cover well and aren’t prone to giving up the big play.  Still, both are at least decent plays because of the volume of work they each get.  TE Brent Celek is also a decent play, although he may get asked to block more considering Vick’s high sack rate, the Falcons’ decent sack rate of nearly 3 per game, and their ability to get pressure to create turnovers.Lesean McCoy has yet to really get on track, but he may be the key to the Eagles being able to pull the upset in the game.  The Falcons rank just 28th against the rush, so look for the Eagles to try to exploit that weakness early and often, especially since if McCoy is running the ball well, it means Vick isn’t turning it over and the Falcons’ potent offense isn’t on the field.Good Start:  RB Lesean McCoyMiddle of the Road:  QB Michael Vick, WR Desean Jackson, WR Jeremy Maclin, TE Brent CelekBad Start:  WR Jeremy Maclin
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