While both sides have played it down, Thursday night’s matchup between the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs at Lincoln Financial Field largely revolves around head coaches, as Andy Reid returns to the City of Brotherly Love against new coach Chip Kelly.
After 14 years of service, Reid was fired by the Eagles after a 4-12 record in the 2012 season, but was quickly snapped up by the Chiefs. During his tenure in Philadelphia, Reid compiled a 130-93-1 record, reaching five NFC title games and one Super Bowl.
Reid, 55, is off to a hot start with his new club, and there is renewed optimism in Kansas City for the first time in recent seasons. The Chiefs are unbeaten after two games for the first time since 2010, the last year they made the playoffs.
The Chiefs squeaked out a 17-16 road win against Dallas on Sunday with new quarterback Alex Smith tossing for 223 yards and two touchdowns. Smith also led the team with 57 rushing yards, two more than running back Jamaal Charles.
Charles had a team-high eight receptions for 48 yards and a score, while receiver Dwyane Bowe had four catches for 56 yards and the other touchdown. The Chiefs also forced two Cowboys turnovers, and their 10 penalties for a loss of 45 yards didn’t come back to haunt them.
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On the flip side, Kelly received praise for Philadelphia's effort in Week One, only to see his squad falter the follow week. The Eagles lit up the Washington Redskins in a 33-27 victory by tallying 443 total yards in the season opener, but held the ball for less than 20 minutes in a 33-30 loss to San Diego on Sunday.
Despite a limited amount of time for the offense to operate, the Eagles offense performed at a high level, as San Diego escaped with a game-winning field goal with seven seconds remaining. Quarterback Michael Vick rifled off 428 passing yards for two touchdowns, and ran for another score. Wide receiver DeSean Jackson hauled in a 61-yard touchdown pass, en route to a nine-catch, 193-yard performance.
It was a well-rounded performance for Kelly's high-octane offense. Running back LeSean McCoy had five receptions for 114 yards, while receiver Riley Cooper caught two passes for 25 yards and his first touchdown of the season. Zach Ertz, Jason Avant, and Bryce Brown were also key contributors in Week Two.
The Eagles defense left something to be desired, though. The Chargers tested Philadelphia’s coverage up the middle, extending drives with 22 first downs and a 10-for-15 conversion rate on third down. San Diego had three drives of 11-plus plays for more than 70 yards, and scored on each.
The game kicks-off at 8:25 p.m. ET, and a live online stream is available by purchasing NFL Game Access here.
NFL Network has the national broadcast. 6ABC in Philadelphia and KSHB-41 in Kansas City.
Betting Odds: Philadelphia favored by 3.5 points.
Over/Under: 51 points
Prediction: Philadelphia 34, Kansas City 24