Monday, December 21, 2009

Eagles in the playoffs

Minnesota's loss gives the Eagles a legitimate shot at a #2 seed and a first-round bye. They'll win the tiebreaker based on conference record, so they only need to pick up one game in two weeks left. As always, it's key to secure that bye, but especially this season as the Eagles most-likely opponent in the wildcard round will be an NFC East team.

Of course, the way Dallas played on Saturday means the Eagles could very easily slide to #5 or #6 if the Cowboys win out. That could set up a revenge game at Arizona, which is no cakewalk either. Much, much better to win these last two games and get a bye.

Some notes on the Eagles game against the 49ers

  • Not the time to go for it - As a pure odds play, going for it on fourth-and-1 from their own 29 yardline is actually correct. But when you look at the 49ers offense, you have to understand that they simply can't score unless you help them with great field position. So why risk it? Against a powerhouse offense - like the Saints - I would love this move, but it doesn't work against a weak sister like the Niners. Then later in the game, you punt on a fourth-and-two from the 49ers 37...where's the consistency?
  • Stop the Vick madness - Shuttling Vick in and out of the game is silly, and I wish it would stop. It cost the Eagles at least one timeout, which would have helped a lot (and maybe been worth another four points) at the end of the half. If you're going to use Vick, and I wouldn't bother, then send him in for one full series in each half. Allow him to develop some timing and get into the flow of a game, without disrupting the rest of the offense. But honestly, what do you think scares defensive coordinators more right now, McNabb-to-Jackson, or Michael Vick?
  • Disappearing Shady - Nine carries for 48 yards? Hasn't he earned more touches than that? I like Weaver as much as anyone, but he shouldn't have twice as many carries (17) as Shady. He's not a threat to break long runs.
  • Throw, Alex, throw - Even though the Eagles were in nickel defense the whole game, and Frank Gore was averaging 6 yards/carry, Niners coaches called a total of 16 runs for him. Meanwhile, their awful QB was tossing three picks. Sounds like someone took a page out of the Reid/Mornhinwheg playbook.

Let's clean this up, Birds, and make a run. The Flyers aren't offering any post-football hope this year, so give me at least a Superbowl appearance to hold me over until the draft.

One word on Mike Tomlin's much-ridiculed onsides was absolutely correct and bordered on brilliant. Green Bay was clearly caught by surprise and the play executed within a half-yard of perfection. If he kicks deep, Green Bay can eat up the rest of the clock and win the game with a FG...considering how terrible the Pittsburgh secondary has played, both yesterday and late in games generally, how can football announcers and writers believe this is the best option? Instead, he kicks short, nearly recovers the ball...and when it fails, Green Bay scores with enough time left for Pittsburgh to drive the field themselves. You'll read all week how Ben 'bailed him out' with that great throw at the end, but Ben would have never had that opportunity without Tomlin's decision.


Post a Comment

<< Home