Through four games the Eagles stand at 3-1, first in the NFC East with the only loss this season coming in a close defeat on the road to Kansas City. After beating Washington Monday night, the Chiefs improved to 4-0 on the season, the only remaining undefeated team in the NFL and the clear favorites — after beating New England, Philly, San Diego and Washington — to get to the Super Bowl.
Or … maybe not.
Despite losing to the Chiefs and Carolina Panthers at home and needing a Tom Brady miracle to beat Houston, the Patriots, at 2-2, are still the odds-on favorite to win the Super Bowl, according to Vegas oddsmakers. Andy Reid’s Chiefs are up to 10-to-1, tied for fourth-best in the NFL.
The Eagles? They’re up to 25-to-1 by most oddsmakers, which doesn’t seem all that close to New England’s 6-to-1, but it’s a marked improvement from where they were a few weeks ago. According to Oddshark, Bovada has the Eagles at 22-to-1, ahead of everyone in the NFC but Dallas, Seattle, Atlanta and Green Bay.
Things are looking up, which is sort of odd given the Eagles barely beat two teams with a combined no wins the last two games. Last week, the Eagles were at 40-1, tied for 13th in the 32-team league. But before the season began, they were even lower.
Notice the Birds didn’t even make RJ Bell’s initial list of Super Bowl favorites just four weeks ago. Just after the Super Bowl, the Eagles were installed at 55-to-1 to win it all, behind New York (50-to-1), Washington (40-to-1) and Dallas (15-to-1) in the division. In mid-August, after the draft and free agency and well into training camp, the Eagles had moved up to 40-to-1, still a far cry from a contender, but better. Definitely better.
Now, people are starting to believe. At the very least, people with money.
The Vegas odds to win the Super Bowl aren’t a harbinger for things to come, necessarily, but if the number on the Eagles has cut in half from where it opened, there’s something to be said about one of the hot teams in a wide-open NFC.
With a winnable game against Arizona on the slate this Sunday, the Eagles could turn some heads around the league. Dallas has to host a tough Packers team — Green Bay has the best odds to get to the Super Bowl of any team in the NFC — while the winless Giants host the winless Chargers in the worst Week 5 game in recent memory. Washington has a bye, so if the Eagles win at home Sunday there’s a chance they could be two games up on the rest of the division heading into Thursday Night Football in Carolina. The Panthers, after Sunday’s win over New England, still have lower odds than the Eagles to get to the Super Bowl. That doesn’t mean Philly will be the favorite in that game, but it says something about Carson Wentz, Doug Pederson, Jim Schwartz and what the Eagles have done in the early part of the season in making people believe they’ve turned a corner.
We’ve written so much about how tough the Eagles’ schedule will be down the stretch, but Arizona should be a win, Carolina could be a win, they already beat Washington, San Francisco is terrible, Denver is pretty darn good but the game is in Philly and then comes the bye.
Could the Eagles be 8-1? Maybe. Will they be? Probably not, no. But it’s looking more like they’re going to stay contenders for a while.