Last Thursday, a guy was talking to an attractive woman in a bar, and she was giving him every hint that she would gladly give him her number, and he never took the bait.
Did this really happen? No (at least not last Thursday), but it’s the best analogy I could use to describe last week’s Eagles – Chiefs game, which resulted in a 26-16 Eagles loss, leaving the Birds at 1-2 on the young season.
The Chiefs were basically GIVING the Eagles the game, but the Birds just wouldn’t take the bait. Early on, Kansas City couldn’t move the ball on offense, and the Eagles were moving it against a team with an above average defense. Yet the Birds would constantly shoot themselves in the foot, be it a bad pass, center snaps hitting players’ body parts, or the inability to make a fair catch on a punt.
During the 1st two weeks of the season, it looked like Michael Vick had donned a red cape to play the role of Superman, but he was much more like Clark Kent against the Chiefs, as his ability to make accurate decisions was greatly diminished due to the unrelenting Chiefs pass rush and some bad decisions on his part.
Add to that the pomp and circumstance at halftime, when, instead of the fans having to wait in long lines in the stadium concourse for food, they were treated to a helping of extra value meal #5 – One D-Mac, a side order of pretentiousness, and one large ego…make that super-sized.
I have no argument that Donovan McNabb’s number should be retired – McNabb was the greatest quarterback in Eagles history in my opinion. But after his “rousing” halftime speech when he was basically preaching to the crowd about how “#5 loves you”, I am now lobbying to change Whitney Houston’s 1992 hit song “I Will Always Love You” to “5 Will Always Love you”, (as mentioned by McNabb in the 3rd person, which was strange in itself).
At least for Donovan’s sake, he had Brian Dawkins as the MC, who is easily the most revered Eagle in modern history, and his presence helped to mask any boos that may have rained down from the crowd when McNabb was introduced.
As for the Birds, they now head to Denver, where Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning will be looking to zip passes past them in the thin, light air of Colorado without much interference. The difficult job of covering Manning’s receivers will fall on the shoulders of the Eagles secondary and much-maligned safety Nate Allen, who couldn’t cover a hoagie tray with saran wrap.
Having said that, I don’t think it will be a blowout the way many are predicting. The Eagles have played two straight sloppy games and still had the chance to win both in the 4th quarter. And while the Broncos may be a superior opponent than both the Chargers and the Chiefs, their defense is very suspect.
The Eagles will put points on the board against the Denver defense, their defensive line will put enough pressure on Manning to mask the deficiencies of the secondary, and with ten days to prepare, they will SHOCK THE WORLD! Birds win 37-34 in a nail-biter.
Amit’s Marquee Matchups of the Week (all times in EST and on Sunday unless otherwise noted):
Seahawks at Texans 1:00 PM FOX – If this game was played between utilities, it would be a clash of “gasoline against green energy”. A possible Superbowl preview?
Bears at Lions 1:00 PM FOX – A showdown of two teams in the NFC “Snowbelt” division…pre-snowfall that is.
Jets at Titans 4:05 PM CBS – Hard to fathom that one of these teams will be 3-1 as of Sunday night, barring the ever popular overtime tie.
Dolphins at Saints 8:40 PM ESPN (Mon) – A showdown of two 3-0 teams as South Beach invades the French Quarter.
The Last Word – Speaking of Miami, am I the only person who thinks of “Miami Vice” (the TV show, not the movie) whenever a Phil Collins song from the ’80’s comes on?