The fact that the Eagles lost to the 49ers, 26-21, wasn’t a shock at all. But it was HOW they lost that had many perplexed.
If you had told any football fan that the Birds would need only one offensive touchdown to defeat San Francisco, 99.9% would have bet the farm that the Eagles would win, with the only exception being some guy living in a foxhole somewhere in Montana who didn’t have time to place a bet if only for the fact that law enforcement was on his tail.
But the Eagles high powered offense, which was running up and down the field at the rate of Speedy Gonzalez over the first three games of the season, suddenly looked more like the “Slowsky’s” from the Comcast commercial. LeSean McCoy was unable to find any running lanes due to his inexperienced offensive line and was often too quick to try to run outside instead of trying to pound his way up the middle. Meanwhile, quarterback Nick Foles had receivers open, especially in the first half, but kept overthrowing them on passes which would have led to big gains.
The Birds would have been blown out of Sunday’s contest quite early, but managed to stay in the game due to the rare trifecta consisting of 1) An interception, 2) A punt return, and 3) A blocked punt, all of which led to three touchdowns and had the Eagles two yards away from taking the lead and possibly stealing a game that they really did not deserve to win.
But while their ineptitude at the goal line reared its ugly head at the most inopportune time, the team still sits in good shape at 3-1 on the young season, and the return of Lane Johnson from suspension should help to stabilize an injured and revolving offensive line, and perhaps help the running game to get back on track as well.
It also doesn’t hurt that the Eagles will be facing the St. Louis Rams, who won’t be confused with the “Greatest Show on Turf”, which is what they were when Kurt Warner made the transition from throwing chickens across the poultry aisle to throwing touchdowns to Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt. The 2014 edition of the Rams will be lucky to finish 8-8, and the Eagles would do well to score early and often and not give the Rams any reason to think they can win.
No fear peeps – Eagles win 31-20, and get back on the winning track.
The Last Word:
The Phillies just ended their 2014 campaign, and while the company line is that they did not lose any more games than last year (73-89 in consecutive years), this year was actually worse, if only for the fact that they were out of playoff contention by July 1st instead of August 1st.
The team has an aging roster and under the helm of team president David Montgomery, refused to try to get younger and better, sticking with scouts who’ve made bad draft choices and players who just can’t play at the big league level.
With Pat Gillick serving as the team’s temporary president, things should start to improve, as Gillick won’t hesitate to revamp the farm system. Gillick, in my opinion, is the main reason the Phillies won it all in 2008, and while not every baseball move he made was the correct one, the man has made many more good than bad decisions, resulting in his many years of success with so many different organizations.
But even with his stamp on the Phillies going forward, the lousy, non-expiring contracts this team has gotten itself into will probably mean that they will be mediocre at best for the next 2-3 years. So on that note, my proposed marketing campaign for the 2015 Phillies is as follows:
We are Family,
I got Jimmy, Ryan and Utley,
We are Family,
Come to see the Phanatic, we’ll stink!
Amit’s Marquee Matchups of the Week (all times in EST and on Sunday unless noted otherwise):
Texans at Cowboys 1:00 PM CBS
Bills at Lions 1:00 PM FOX
Cardinals at Broncos 4:05 PM FOX
Chiefs at Niners 4:25 PM CBS
Bengals at Patriots 8:30 PM NBC