The holiday season is now in full effect, and with it, all of the various Christmas specials have started to air on television, the first of which took place last Sunday at the Linc.
Unfortunately for Eagles fans, it was appropriately titled “The Grinch that Stole a Playoff Bye”, starring Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. Wilson, playing the role of the Grinch, ducked and weaved his way around all night, maneuvering his way around Eagle defenders before finding an open receiver or running for a first down. And while the Birds D-line did an admirable job of keeping him in check at times, doing so for long stretches is quite difficult against a talent like Wilson, especially when the Eagles offense just couldn’t do enough to stay on the field and maintain any sustained drives.
Another item of note that became painfully clear is that the Eagles situation at quarterback is still a murky one almost two years into the Chip Kelly era. While Mark Sanchez might be fine as a stopgap or backup, he is not much more than just another one of the reindeers and not the “marquee” reindeer (like Rudolph) that the Eagles are still looking for.
While Chip’s offense can be high octane at times, Sanchez has the ability to play great like he did against Dallas a couple weeks back or just be plain mediocre as he was against a tough defense like Seattle’s.
Sunday’s loss also displayed the unfortunate truth that while this team is trending upward quicker than anyone thought they would after Andy Reid left, they are still not “ready for primetime” and struggle when they face an elite team.
But even with last week’s loss, the Birds remain in control of their destiny for a division title, and a win at home against the Cowboys this Sunday night will be the catalyst to win their 2nd straight division title. And while a bye is still possible, last week’s loss only means that more help is needed from other teams to jump into that 2nd seed which affords a week off and a 2nd round playoff game at home.
While many in the Delaware Valley were hoping that the Cowboys would began their December swoon once the calendar changed months, Dallas rebounded nicely from a defeat to the Birds on Thanksgiving to take their frustrations out on the lowly Bears on the road in a game that wasn’t even as close as the score indicated.
Dallas will be looking to exact revenge for the beating they suffered at the hands of their division rival, and a repeat of that game is not likely. However, the Eagles are still more talented on offense than the Cowboys defense can probably handle, and the Birds should do just enough to get Tony Romo hearing footsteps from the likes of Fletcher Cox, Vinny Curry, Cedric Thornton, and the Broad Street line’s most famous Monthly “Trailpass” holder, Connor Barwin.
While it won’t be as easy as last time, Birds win 30-20, and get a step closer to the playoffs with the football nation looking on on Sundayyyyyy Night Football…..
The Last Word:
The Phillies must have been seriously wheeling and dealing at the baseball winter meetings, as they just traded longtime shortstop Jimmy Rollins to the Los Angeles Dodgers. And while it is still officially unclear as to what we are getting back, my sources tell me it is ten giant inflated beach balls.
While that might seem like an unfair trade for a player who still has a higher than average defensive prowess, if you’ve ever been to Dodger Stadium, you know those beach balls are a highly desired commodity.
I speak from experience – wear your Phillies gear to “Chavez Ravine” (where Dodger stadium is located) and you will be perfectly fine. But take the air out of one of the beach balls being thrown around at the game and you will be treated like a Cowboys fan sitting in the 700 level at the Vet.
The Phillies didn’t stop there, continuing their clearance sale (or “cleaning house” sale depending on how you look at it) by sending lefthanded reliever Antonio Bastardo to the Pittsburgh Pirates for a box of used “Terrible Towels” from the Pirates NFL counterpart, the Steelers.
Phils GM Ruben Amaro had initially asked for a box of NEW Terrible Towels in order to help the team stay below their “self-imposed” spring training salary cap for towels, but the Pirates determined that that was just too high of an asking price for Bastardo. They did, however, throw in a sandwich from Pittsburgh’s famous “Primanti Brothers” as a gesture of good faith.
Rumor has it that it was a grilled, and overcooked, Reuben…
Amit’s Top 5 Power Rankings:
1. Broncos (1)
2. Patriots (2)
3. Cardinals (3)
4. Seahawks (5)
5. Packers (4)
Amit’s Marquee Matchups of the Week (all times in EST and on Sunday unless otherwise noted):
Dolphins at Patriots 1:00 PM CBS
Texans at Colts 1:00 PM CBS
Bengals at Browns 1:00 PM FOX
Packers at Bills 1:00 PM FOX
Broncos at Chargers 4:05 PM CBS – Game of the Week
49ers at Seahawks 4:25 PM FOX
Cowboys at Eagles 8:30 PM NBC