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Consecutive Big 5 wins for top-ranked Villanova, which beats Temple, 87-67

Things are looking up for linebacker Mychal Kendricks (pictured), who has a sack, an interception and a tackle for a 5-yard loss, and the Eagles’ first-team defense during a 20-16 preseason victory over the visiting Bills. The first-team offense doesn’t fare so well.

Eric Fisher’s feelings about the Olympics have changed almost as drastically as 1976 Olympics decathlon champion Bruce Jenner has changed.

The Greek God of Wrestling explains the impact broadcaster can have in wrestling, and why today’s broadcasters aren’t up to par. Achilles Heel also fills us in on new matches for SummerSlam and GFW’s Destination X, reminds us that Tommy Dreamer’s House of Hardcore comes to 2300 Arena on Saturday, and explains why the success he predicted for The Revival will be delayed.

Archive for December, 2017

Putting it on the Line

Posted by Eric Fisher On December - 13 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Last week my top picks were mostly teams playing bad teams. My one mistake in that rationale was picking the Texans (-3) over the 49ers as my “best bet.” The mistake was that the Texans also aren’t a very good team.

I’m going in a different direction this week. My top picks are all teams involved in the NFC playoff chase. My “best bet” is the Vikings, who are 10½-point favorites over the visiting Bengals. After losing at Carolina last week, the Vikings (10-3) need a win to stay within range of the Eagles. The Bengals (5-8), who lost at home to the Bears last week, don’t seem to be showing much grit.

The Panthers (9-4) show up in my “other top picks.” Coming off a win over the Vikings, the Panthers are only a 3-point favorite over the visiting Packers. I realize Aaron Rodgers is coming back this week, but the Panthers are simply a better team – even with Rodgers.

I also like the Cowboys (-4 at the Raiders), Falcons (-6 at Bucs) and Saints (-16 vs. Jets) as my other top picks. The Saints are a little banged up after their Thursday night loss to the Falcons, but, with Bryce Petty starting for the Jets, I’ll take the high-scoring Saints despite the huge line.

As for the Eagles, I like them as 7½-point favorites over the Giants, but I’m a little leery of making a team playing its third straight road game one of my top picks..

Here are my Week 15 selections:

(Home team in CAPS)                                           

(Winning team against the line in bold)

Broncos -2½ at COLTS

Bears +5½ at LIONS

CHIEFS +1 vs. Chargers

Eagles -7½ at GIANTS

PANTHERS -3 vs. Packers

VIKINGS -10½ vs. Bengals

JAGUARS -11 vs. Texans

SAINTS -16 vs. Jets

REDSKINS -4½ vs. Cardinals

BROWNS +7 vs. Ravens

Rams +2½ at SEAHAWKS

STEELERS +3 vs. Patriots

Titans +2 at 49ERS

Cowboys -3 at RAIDERS

Falcons -6 vs. BUCS

Best bet: VIKINGS -10½ vs. Bengals

Other top picks: PANTHERS -3 vs. Packers; Cowboys -3 at RAIDERS; Falcons -6 vs. BUCS; SAINTS -16 vs. Jets

Last week: 7-9 (109-89-8 overall)

Best bet: 0-1 (6-8 overall)

Other top picks: 3-1 (27-27-3 overall)

First-and-10

Posted by Eric Fisher On December - 13 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

A quick look at 10 sports stories in the news…  

1. Wentz has surgery to repair ACL Carson Wentz has surgery in Pittsburgh to repair torn ACL in left knee. He could be ready in time for start of 2018 season. Wentz suffered season-ending ACL tear during 3rd quarter of Sunday’s 43-35 victory over Rams. Wentz apparently injured when legs get sandwiched by 2 Rams defenders during dive into end zone, although Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said he may have suffered injury on leap into end zone rather than on hit. Wentz finishes series, throwing 2-yard TD pass to Alshon Jeffery before leaving game.

2. Ertz cleared to play TE Zach Ertz, who missed win over Rams after sustaining concussion against Seahawks, clears concussion protocol. Left guard Stefen Wisniewski, who left Rams game with ankle injury, doesn’t practice Wednesday, but head coach Doug Pederson expects him to play Sunday against Giants. Eagles re-sign LB/special teams demon Bryan Braman.

3. Eagles defeat Rams, clinch NFC East  Eagles clinch NFC East title, move into sole possession of top seed in NFC with 43-35 triumph over host Rams, but good news overshadowed by left knee injury for Carson Wentz (see next item in first-and-10). Eagles (11-2) take lead on Jake Elliott’s 33-yard field goal with 3:45 remaining. Field goal set up by forced fumble by Chris Long, who strips QB Jared Goff of ball. Before injury, Wentz throws 4 TD passes, setting franchise single-season record with 33. Nick Foles completes 6 of 10 passes for 42 yards in relief of Wentz. Torrey Smith catches 6 passes for 100 yards. Tight end Trey Burton catches 2 TD passes. Eagles visit Giants next Sunday (1 p.m.).

4. Wildcats overwhelm Owls Jaylen Brunson pours in 31 points, including 22 during 1st half, as top-ranked Villanova cruises past host Temple, 87-67, for its 22nd straight Big 5 victory. Omari Spellman chips in with 27 points for undefeated Wildcats (11-0). Quinton Rose paces Owls with 27 points.

5. Flyers’ success continues at home After winning 3 straight games on road, Flyers extend winning streak to 4 with 4-2 triumph over visiting Maple Leafs in 1st game of 5-game homestand. Sean Couturier scores with 2:55 remaining, putting puck in top corner after gorgeous between-legs pass from Claude Giroux along boards. Earlier in game, Giroux scores off face-off win by Couturier. Maple Leafs respond to Giroux’s goal with 2 goals, taking 2-1 lead after 2 periods. But Flyers tie game on Taylor Leier’s goal 5:36 into 3rd period. Loss is Leafs’ first this season when leading after 2 periods. Brian Elliott makes 20 saves. Flyers to host Sabres on Thursday (7 p.m.).

6. Embiid returns, Sixers win in OT After sitting out last two games, Joel Embiid scores 28 points, grabs 12 rebounds, dishes out 8 assists as Sixers defeat host Timberwolves in overtime, 118-112, to halt 4-game losing streak J.J. Redick contributes 26 points, with 16 coming in 4th quarter and overtime. Richaun Holmes, starting in place of injured Robert Covington (back), adds 15 points, 11 rebounds. Sixers return home Friday (7 p.m.) to face Thunder.

7. Phillies seeking relief Phillies reportedly trying to re-sign veteran relievers Pat Neshek, Tommy Hunter. Neshek was excellent for half-season with Phillies this past season before being traded to Rockies. Hunter posted career-best 2.61 ERA last season with Rays.

8. Horse play Broncos visit Colts on Thursday (8:30 p.m.). Trio of 7-6 teams battling for playoff spots in action Saturday, with Lions (7-6) hosting Bears (4:30 p.m.), and Chiefs host Chargers in clash between AFC co-leaders. In Sunday’s early games (1 p.m.) with playoff implications, Panthers (9-4) host Packers (7-6); Saints (9-4) host Jets (5-8); Vikings (10-3) host Bengals (5-8); Jaguars (9-4) host Texans (4-9); Bills (7-6) host Dolphins (6-7); and Ravens (7-6) visit winless Browns (0-13). In later afternoon games Sunday, Seahawks (8-5) host Rams (9-4) in NFC West battle; Steelers (11-2) host Patriots (10-3) in struggle for AFC’s top seed; and Titans (8-5) visit 49ers (3-10). Cowboys (7-6) visit Raiders (6-7) on Sunday night (8:30 p.m.). On Monday (8:30 p.m.), Falcons (8-5) visit Bucs (4-9).

9. Rodgers to start for Packers Aaron Rodgers expected to return from broken collarbone, start at QB for Packers on Sunday (1 p.m.) against host Panthers.

10. Stanton joins Yankees Slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who hit 59 home runs last season with Marlins, introduced as member of Yankees. Stanton and his $265 million contract go to Yankees in exchange for Starlin Castro and pair of prospects.

(To listen to past PhillyPhanatics.com’s Blog Talk Radio shows, please click here.)

WEEKEND RESULTS

Friday
No games scheduled

Saturday
Cleveland 105, Sixers 98
College Football
Army 14, Navy 13
Men’s Basketball
Temple 81, St. Joseph’s 78
Penn 78, Dayton 70

Sunday
Eagles 43, Rams 35
New Orleans 131-124
Men’s Basketball
Villanova 77, La Salle 68
Robert Morris 74, Drexel 60

LOCAL SCHEDULE

Monday
No games scheduled

Tuesday
Flyers 4, Maple Leafs 2
Sixers 118, Minnesota 112 (OT)

Wednesday
Men’s Basketball
Villanova 87, Temple 67

Thursday
Sabres at Flyers, 7 p.m.

Friday
Thunder at Sixers, 7 p.m.

Saturday
Stars at Flyers, 7 p.m.
Men’s Basketball
Drexel at Temple, 5 p.m.

Sunday
Eagles at Giants, 1 p.m.
Men’s Basketball
Mercer at La Salle, 4:30 p.m.
Maine at St. Joseph’s, 4:30 p.m.

FOR LEAGUE-WIDE SCORES AND STANDINGS, CLICK ON THE LINKS UNDER THE “STANDINGS” HEADING IN THE SIDEBAR TO THE RIGHT, OR IN THE HEADING AT THE UPPER-RIGHT OF THIS PAGE

Wentz suffers season-ending ACL tear