Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Getting Caught Up

back in town and trying to get caught up, but wanted to take a few minutes to continue the conversation started about the eagles.

the bottom line is that they're losing because the offense is playing horribly. it's unlikely to continue like this all season.

mcnabb is coming off a serious injury and as he gets healthier he'll play better. as with many things in life, it all comes down to expectations. despite his history of coming back from injury and playing pretty well, we should have expected a significant drop-off in his play. unfortunately, i didn't, so now i'm disappointed. like him or not, when he's healthy, he is still the best QB in the division. i haven't seen anything from romo, manning, or campbell that indicates it's going to be any different if mcnabb's able to get healthy. of the three other QBs in the division, i think campbell has the most potential (i'll elaborate why i think so in a later post). btw - interesting article on james andrews (the surgeon who did mcnabb's surgery). did a profile of him a while back too.

what's maddening is that the coaching staff knows this and sees this too, yet continue to trot out the same pass heavy gameplan. in some ways, they're stuck between a rock and a hard place because they can't run westbrook more as he's an injury waiting to happen and has already missed a game this year, but i don't see why buckhalter isn't getting the ball more. he's been very productive so far this year. i know he has his problems fumbling and in pass protection, but you can't ease some of the burden on the gimpy QB?

they might not get any more exciting, but by the end of the season, they'll be better and will likely sneak into the playoffs (as badly as they've played, they're ranked 11th in team DVOA). won't matter because they're not anywhere near the class of new england or indianapolis.

to address some specific points made:

I can't figure out how they're winning when Kearse, Gocong and Gaither are giving them so little that they're basically playing 8 on 11.

i think kearse is in a similar situation as mcnabb. he's been playing better every week so there's room for hope. agree on gaither, he's a perfect 4th linebacker, not a starter. gocong i'm actually pretty happy with all things considered. he hasn't made any obvious errors (as far as i've seen) and he's made a few plays that were eye opening (good example, in the giants game there was a run off the left guard with the fullback leading, gocong reads the play and stuffs the play by not only taking on the fullback, but actually pushing him back into the hole).

The Eagles are a mediocre team, and more to the point provide virtually no entertainment.

while i think they'll be a better team and probably be a playoff team by the end of the year (9-7 probably gets into the playoffs this season), i don't think we'll be seeing a more entertaining team until there is a regime change. the win against the jets was exactly the type of grind it out game the eagles have been famous for under big red. they'll win more than they lose and do it in the most boring way possible.

He can also take his QB who got a $20M signing bonus after LOSING a playoff game with him (that was after loss to Rams the 1st playoff year).

not sure what the point is here, but $20 mil signing bonus was the going rate, especially for a 3rd year qb whose LOSING playoff game that you cite was the nfc championship game against (at the time) a potential dynasty rams team. you can continue to not like him, but he's consistently been a top 3-4 qb in the nfl while he's been here.

Blow it up and start rebuilding. Mc5 and Reid do NOT win a Super Bowl. Not in Philly, probably not together somewhere else, probably not ever.

i'd like to see a regime change because i'm not entertained by andy reid's style of offense, but the reality is that coaching in the nfl is a difficult job and unless we're guaranteed to get a coach that is better than reid, i'd just as soon stay with him. do you seriously want to risk going back to the days of kotite? no one knows whether or not he's going to win a SB. i think it's likely he'll probably win one in his career eventually (like dungy and cowher did) because he's a good coach. not great, but better than all but a handful. unless we can get one of that handful, i'd prefer to stick with the devil i know.

I wanted to show how far the Birds have fallen just in the division as far as talent goes, so I am going to try to do a talent comparison by position

i don't think what we're seeing is a talent problem -- the birds are more than competitive in terms of overall talent. even in your overview potentially skewed by the negativity of the slow start to the season, the eagles come up middle of the pack and the cowboys at the bottom. the visual problem is that the team lacks flashy players, having invested in fat guys by design.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

"i don't think we'll be seeing a more entertaining team until there is a regime change. the win against the jets was exactly the type of grind it out game the eagles have been famous for under big red. they'll win more than they lose and do it in the most boring way possible."

There is a fundamental difference between this edition of the Eagles and some others we've seen under the Reid regime. Maybe it's just me, but I see this team as B-O-R-I-N-G. I've never really felt this way before this season. I've never had trouble paying attention to the games before. I'm usually on the edge of my seat, pumped, pulling for victory until the last second. This year, I've caught myself hoping the Eagles lose so we get a better draft pick. I hate thinking this way (I rooted for the Sixers to win every damn game last season). Maybe I'm just getting old.

In fairness to the Birds, I think half of my problem is with the NFL. Do they have to chase every dime ever minted by loading up games with endless commercials? Are there really that many men out there suffering from ED who don't know that Miller sells the high life? MOST NFL games have become boring. The league is in danger of killing the golden goose.

The Eagles may get to 9-7 and make the playoffs. I hope so, but it won't change my mind about their being mediocre. If you play a soft schedule in the NFC and win 9 games, you are by definition "mediocre."

I'm just rooting for better entertainment at this point.

Ed Wade

9:15 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll start cracking on the D, again, just my opinion

1. Strahan-still playing at a high level 14 years in
2. Daniels-when healthy he can play effectively vs. pass and run
3. Spears-basically assigned to tie up blockers
4. Kearse-needs to retire-out of gas. Even when healthy, has been a major bust for the Birds

1. Yumeniora-a stud with speed and toughness, top 5 in the league
2. Cole-not an every down player, but a hustler who makes at least one big play a game
3. Carter-big hype, little output
4. Canty-a blocker eater, doesn't make many game impacting plays

1.Griffin-up and down, but very disruptive when healthy
2. Bunkley-200% better in 2007
3. Robins-not a bad player, not an impact guy
*Dallas only uses a nose

1. Patterson-best athlete of all noses, disrupts things when healthy
2. Cofield-I like this guy. he really disrupts things and gets good penetration.
3. Ratliff-big strong guy, does his job
4. Montgomery-don't know much about him, so I may be short changing him

1. Pierce-stud. Disrupts things all over the field. I wish the Birds had a guy like him
2. Fletcher-Tackling machine, another disruptor
3. James/Ayodele-will rank both guys as 3. solid, some great plays, sometimes gets tied up in the mush
4. Gaither-hustles, but not an every down player

1. Washington-weakest position in the division. Not a sgtud among the group. picked this guy because he's the only guy who isn't a converted DE-he can actually run.
2. Kiawanuka-bad at most LB related skills, very good pass rusher
3. Spencer-the Birds should've taken him vs. Kolb
4. Gocong-not an LB. Doing some good things, but I really wish they blitzed him more. i am down on him, but I wish I could see what he could do if unleashed

1. Ware-stud. Makes lots of big plays and must be accounted for every play
2. Spikes-huge neck, doing a nice job, clearly no longer the dominant guy who used to scare people
3. McIntosh-Skins fans are very high on this guy, young and unproven
4. Mitchell-he blows and may be the ugliest guy in football.

1. Lito-I am down on him-he's hurt too much. A huge talent when he does play. Surprisingly, weak position
2. Madison-skills fading, still has a big play now and again
3. Rogers-blows a lot of coverages
4. henry-teams pick on him

1. Newmann-I think he is a bit over-rated, but still does a good job on top WR...except when he plays the Pats
2. Springs-always hurt, but shut down guy when healthy
3. Brown-Would be the best RCB in the division
4. Ross-rookie with promise

1. Landry-only a rookie, but has all the tools to be an all star
2. Considine-I am shocking myself with this, but he has played pretty well this year in both pass and run. his speed has helped them shut down other team's passing games
3. Williams-he sucks. A cheap shot who is too slow to cover anyone and too undisciplined to stay in his lane so he's always out of position.
4. Butler-know nothing about him, so this ranking means nil.

1. Taylor-a big hitter. Cannot cover anyone, but a huge asset in the run game
2. Wilson-very good in run and pass support
3. Dawk-he appears to be done and I love Dawk so I hope he retires lest he do permanent dameg with more head injuries
4. Hamlin-not a bad safety, just not as good as his peers

G Men-26

three close teams and Dallas with lots of holes. In fairness, comparing the 4/3 with the 3/4 is tough to convert, so they are probably close to the pack. The thing this tells me is the Birds have good DT and secondary. If they'd just grab a DE (and I think they have one who should be playing in Abiamiri) and a better MLB, this D could be elite again.


10:39 PM EDT  
Blogger The Mean Guy said...

There is a fundamental difference between this edition of the Eagles and some others we've seen under the Reid regime. Maybe it's just me, but I see this team as B-O-R-I-N-G. I've never really felt this way before this season.

could this be due to the lack of dynamic play we used to get from the QB?

In fairness to the Birds, I think half of my problem is with the NFL. Do they have to chase every dime ever minted by loading up games with endless commercials?

the answer for this is tivo. when i'm at home, i've gotten in the habit of watching the game about 20 min after it starts and then fast forwarding through the commercials. you catch up around halftime, but i don't have the patience to wait longer than around 20 min after the start.

9:39 AM EDT  
Blogger The Mean Guy said...

G Men-26

i find ranking comparisons tough because it's hard to conclude anything concrete and assess what it really means.

for instance, you noted that the four sams are roughly the same, yet one has to be ranked at the top and one has to be ranked at the bottom.

meanwhile, sam madison is a distant, very distant, second to lito at the right corner spot, but only one number separates them.

definitely interesting though. i'll be curious to see what you think at the end of the season.

9:43 AM EDT  
Anonymous Phil said...

Ed, hard to see this as a soft schedule considering all 3 NFC East opponents have quality teams when in years past the birds were the only ones at or above average.

12:14 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll take your word for it, Phil. I hope the Birds are better than I think they look. But you have to admit that there are teams out there that look like they are playing at a much higher lever than we are.

I'm hoping that as Donovan gets healthier we turn things around. I think TMG made a good point in a previous response that the difference between this team and more exciting iterations may be the play of the quarterback.

Ed Wade

9:56 PM EDT  
Blogger Matt Townsend said...

Gocong is horrible. I've watched three or four games on DVR and still has trouble reading pass/run. Gaither actually isn't playing that bad. I think he's playing better than any LB the Eagles have. One thing about Gaither his speed helps him make up for his mistakes. Gocong really doesn't have much speed running laterally, which is key for an LB. And Spikes is average at best.

The defensive ends are horrible. Kearse regularly gives up contain on running plays and gets pushed 5 yards downfield. Cole isn't a starter-caliber player. He can't beat a good tackle and he's undersized so he gets pancaked a lot.

The Eagles D looks good b/c they haven't played many good offenses. Did you see what Detroit did to them?

The bright sides are the defensive tackles and SBrown. Consedine just isn't strong enough to play strong safety in the NFL. Will James is sooo weak and slow.

On offense, they should run the ball as much as possible. The one huge thing you see when you watch plays over again is how good their offensive line is this year. The only weak link in the running game really is Tapeh, who is a below-average blocker.

1:07 AM EDT  
Anonymous Phil said...

Oh, I think there are a lot of teams playing better than the Eagles right now. That said though, 1 less muffed punt and the birds would be 3-2 right now. How badly would we be on them if that was the case?

10:19 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd still be on them, Phil. Remember, my problem isn't with their record so much as it is with their lack of entertainment value. I realize my issue is unique among sports fans who tend to gain "entertainment" exlusively through wins and losses, but it is what it is.

I'm hoping for a thrilling game this Sunday.

Ed Wade

9:32 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

fundamentally you'll struggle to ever enjoy a game Ed because the commercials drive you to drink. I;m with you, they kill game and viewer momentum, but that part won't change. Now if they had so many commercials because they scored so quickly or shut down people so quickly, we'd both be more on board, but no, they go 3 and out with poor play callin, WR who get stuffed, or QB tossing 5 yard patterns when they need 8 yards all game long. Thsi team is and will be boring unless they grab a defense stretching WR. They were very entertaining with TO. They were very entertaining when Stallworth was healthy or McNabb was out last year because you never knew what to expect. Unfortunately we all know what to expect right now, and it doesn't seem to be anything any of us like. Pass, pass, pass, punt. Token run, pass, pass, punt. Run 3 yards, pass, sack. Yuck!


10:42 PM EDT  
Blogger Big Dog said...

I feel the same way this year the way I felt when the Eagles were 3-13 under Ray Rhodes....just bad, unenjoyable football....I miss a lot because of f-in'soccer and it's not that big of a deal. Outside of Westbrook, this team is a bland, unexciting pile of slop. I need for this to be torn down and re-built just to get me excited again. They lost this game in dreadful fashion and I am already over it.

7:40 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw four games this weekend. My eight-year-old played in three of them, the Eagles the fourth.

Beating the White Sox (playoff baseball) was by far the most enjoyable. Losing a heart-breaker to the Dodgers (10-9) today was the hardest to take emotionally, especially since my boy whiffed 3 times. Winning 3-1 against the Blue team in soccer didn't do to much for me, even though my son scored a clutch goal (his 12th of the season), because let's face it - it's soccer.

Watching the Eagles cough up a 97 yard drive to a hapless team that had less than 2 minutes and no times out left didn't bother me a bit, which is precisely why I'm with Big Dog. This team needs to be blown up. No more dinks and dunks, no more West Coast offense, no more excuses. It's over.

Andy Reid is a damn decent human being and I wish him well in his future. I hopes his kids turn things around, and I hope he gets the chance to build another team in another city.

It's been a nice run, but the sun has set on this regime. It time to think (in a different direction) about the future.

Where am I going wrong?

Ed Wade

8:15 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Screw it, the Eagles suck.
After Don ran for that 1st down in the last few minutes, after the touchdown, I thought to myself, "When I post on scrapple later, I have to give Don some props for finally showing some fire & emotion". So, props to Don for getting fired up and showing it on the touchdown and his first down scramble. I was also going to write that Consodine can't play, and this was BEFORE the touchdown. He flat out can't play, get him off the field. When I saw the Bears driving, 3 plays before the touchdown, I said out loud, to no one b/c I was watching by myself, "They're going to lose this game", and then I laughed. That's how bad it is, I realize they're going to lose when they shoud win, I laugh, they do lose as I thought they would, I tune to the postgame show to hear what Ray Didinger has to say (can we pleeeze get rid of all the other knuckleheads on that show ?? None of them bring anything to the table). Then I blow it off, come up from the basement and play with the dog and the kids for a while. That's how bad it is, I'm over it that quick and looking forward to the baseball game tonite. Brutal.
Wait until we play a good team -- egad, we're going to get destroyed, annihilated, sanitized, alphabetized and vaporized.


8:29 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What sucks is that Lurie is brain washed into thinking Reid is the best he can do. He is mkistaken, there are a lot of creative young minds who if given a chance can do some interesting things (Kiffin, Timlin, maybe just hire a guy with I-N at the end of his name). Reid can go 3-13 and be secure in his livelihood. Reid can have a 2007 draft where no one makes any significant contributions (OK Celek had 1 catch today, but not game turning) and be unphased. In the business realm, such piss poor results would cause some changing of the guard, but not this mess. Lurie needs to fire everyone on today's performance alone, but when the smoke clears and they finish going 0 for the division, and make no mistake, they have no prayer of beating anyone in their division, there will be no come to God speech, no jobs lost, no heads rolled. Because "that's not how the gold standard does things". This mess is hopeless. They're talentless and boring, a horrendous combination. Burn it to the ground, rake the coals, rebuild in time. By 2011 they could be competitive again, but it's over. The Dave Campos and Steve Spurriers are gone and real coaches have shown how easily this Birds team can be outschemed and outadjusted. Enough. I missed half the game today and that was A-OK by me. Just pissed at myself for caring in the last 2 minutes and caring enough to write about that toilet of a team now. They suck. Expect 5 wins and be happy with anything more. Pray that the owner has the pride and awareness to know this thing is broken and house needs to be cleaned. The players know it-their lack of emotion and fire shows you all you need to see, they've stopped listening and need a new voice to get them motivated.

I feel like how a Democrat must feel right now couting down to 1/20/09. I dislike the regime in charge and don't care about who's next because it has to be better by being different.


9:41 PM EDT  
Anonymous Phil said...

Catostrophic loss.

I had to watch Slap Shot immediately after the game in order to see what real hitting looks like.

I am now officially firmly in the Wade/Bumble camp and not happy about it. Just when 5 started to show that he's getting healthy (I actually saw some acceleration out of him yesterday!) the team goes belly up. There's no heart in this group. There's no dog there.

Maybe the Flyers. . . maybe. . .

10:07 AM EDT  

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