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When Everything Works

When Everything Works (Before I begin:  here’s hoping that those of you affected by this weekend’s freak snowstorm are warm and safe.  Lot of power outages in the storm’s path, hope you weren’t among them.  And maybe a day off of work or school can’t hurt.  Be careful where it’s slick.) Coming in to the bye week, Eagles fans were understandably concerned about consistency.  It isn’t so much that the Eagles played bad football to get to 2-4, but inconsistent would be a good word to use.  This is a team that blew some big second half leads by playing with urgency when they had a lead and no need to do so.  On Sunday night against Dallas, the same team seemed to do everything right.  On a night like Sunday night, strategy hardly mattered.  How can anyone dissect the second half play calling of a team that didn’t turn the ball over and never ran into a speck of doubt about the outcome of the game?  LeSean McCo...

Eagles Force a QB Change

Eagles Force a QB Change A 20-13 victory over the Washington Redskins, despite not scoring in the second half and allowing the Redskins back into the game late, was exactly what the Eagles needed after their 1-4 start.  That Philadelphia didn’t play particularly well is hardly relevant, and possibly a net gain.  It seems that it might be a good thing that the Eagles will look at game film this week to see some big flaws right there on the screen.  This is not a team that can just shrug off the last few weeks and go back to the “dream.” It does not matter that the Redskins’ quarterback was Rex Grossman, who has developed quite a reputation for throwing interceptions in the NFL.  What matters is that the Eagles’ secondary, that much-hyped unit that has underperformed in the first five weeks of the season, played well enough to knock a starting QB out of a game.  (Grossman might not start for the Redskins again.  We’re still talking about Rex Gros...

For the second straight week, the Eagles outsmart themselves

For the second straight week, the Eagles outsmart themselves Despite losing their starting quarterback in the second half for two weeks in a row, the Eagles had a very real shot at winning both games (at Atlanta and at home against the Giants) that they did not capitalize on for reasons other than the absence of Michael Vick. Flash back last week to Atlanta.  The Eagles came into the fourth quarter with a ten point lead.  Their defense was playing solid if not spectacular football.  Atlanta’s best weapon at the moment was running back Michael Turner, and when time is of the essence it can be difficult to run the football.  In other words, the clock should have been their best friend. Of course, anybody who has watched Andy Reid coach a football game knows that the clock is never a friend of his.  Reid, an uncanny evaluator of talent that continues to replenish a stacked roster, has typically had a lot of difficulty with the final moments of football games, both with and without the lead.  Against Atlanta, ...

It’s Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles with their next hit single

It’s Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles with their next hit single In case you had forgotten, before his time in prison and his NFL comeback, Michael Vick played for the Atlanta Falcons.  This is a big story at the moment, because the Eagles and Falcons are playing on Sunday.  Surprising, I know, that two NFC teams would meet in a regular season game.  Even more so, since this is the unlikely scenario of a player facing a former team.  It’s not like players move constantly in the NFL due to salary cap restrictions. Of course, there’s much more to the Falcons and Eagles than the return of Vick to Atlanta.  Because I’m sure you’ve heard all the “Return To The Eh-Tee-Ell” (because we identify cities by airport codes now), I’ll try and avoid that topic while I go over the other storylines to watch for on Sunday. The Falcons received a gift last week.  All four NFC South teams lost their openers.  This despite a great performance from Cam Newton, a frantic comeback attempt by th...

Eagles 2011: Questions, but no Predictions

Eagles 2011: Questions, but no Predictions I am convinced that the 2011 Philadelphia Eagles are the most unpredictable NFL team ever assembled on paper.  Their head coach is unpredictable, their quarterback seems to go beyond “unpredictable,” and the Eagles have undergone enough roster turn over in the last few years that it can only be described as a “gritty reboot.”  So how does one do a season preview for a team that pretty much defies description?  The Eagles roster has the kind of star power normally reserved for big market baseball teams, but some of those players (particularly on their offense) are known for being somewhat streaky.  Going through a schedule is equally impossible—many of their opponents, especially the Cowboys and Giants, are wildly unpredictable as well, and who knows what injuries teams will have to deal with between now and when they meet the Eagles?  If I made a prediction and it was right, it would only be out of sheer luck.  Everythin...

Trouble Behind the Scenes With Birds

Cost of tickets to increase, fees for tailgating and more...
Trouble Behind the Scenes With Birds Most would agree that the Linc is a significant upgrade over the Vet but that said, so are the prices. And guess what, despite the league’s labor issues and an economy in which everything is going up except middle class wages, the Eagles plan to bump up ticket prices by nearly 10% across the board and concessions may climb even higher. And as if that wasn’t enough tailgaters using grills will have to buy a day pass for $20 in order to fire up their Colemans. The NFL can be so out of touch with reality but the sad news is, while this will undoubtedly fan the fire already burning for fans, when the dust settles, they’ll be back, shelling out the Benjamins and they’ll do it happily. And don’t think for a second that the league doesn’t know it. That’s just the way it is… Back to the labor issues, one source has informed Eagles24x7.com that union/trade association chief DeMaurice Smith had planned to go to court all along and is really look...

The Aftermath: Eagles @ Titans

Time to rest and reset
The Aftermath: Eagles @ Titans It wasn’t Kevin Kolb’s fault the Eagles lost to the Tennessee Titans, 37-19, Sunday. Still, Kolb didn’t play well enough to make Andy Reid re-consider his decision to put Michael Vick back into the starting lineup when he’s healthy, which should be Nov. 7 when the Eagles host Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts. Kolb put up a quarterback rating of just 56.9 in the loss to the Titans less than half of his 133.6 rating he had against Atlanta last week. Here are the rest of the highlights and lowlights from a loss that pretty much had to be expected, although allowing 27 fourth-quarter points is a little hard to take. OFFENSIVE HERO: Tennessee wide receiver Kenny Britt was benched at the start of the game for an altercation in a club last week. He entered the game in the second quarter and almost immediately caught a 26-yard touchdown pass. It wasn’t his last one. Britt caught seven passes for 225 yards, the most ever against the Eagles, with thre...

EAGLES PREVIEW: The Birds fly to Music City

But don't expect any happy songs...
EAGLES PREVIEW: The Birds fly to Music City EAGLES PREVIEW Who: Eagles vs. Tennessee Titans What: Week 7 between an Eagles team, at 4-2, tied for first place in the NFC East and a 4-2 Titans team tied for first in the AFC South. When: Sunday, 1 p.m. Where: LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.   Line: Tennessee by 3   Last Week: Eagles beat Atlanta, 31-17, for their second straight win with Kevin Kolb in place of an injured Mike Vick at quarterback. Kolb played his best game yet as an Eagle with a 133.6 quarterback rating. Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin also had a big game with seven catches for 159 yards and two touchdowns. Tennessee beat division rival Jacksonville, 30-3 on the road and on Monday Night Football for its second straight win as well. Veteran quarterback Kerry Collins came off the bench for an injured Vince Young. The Titans are already 2-0 against the NFC East this year with wins over Dallas and New York. Next Week: Eagles will enjoy their bye week. Tennessee will travel to San Diego. Series ...

THE AFTERMATH: Eagles v. Falcons

Kolb shines, Birds win
THE AFTERMATH: Eagles v. Falcons Kevin Kolb showed he can start, win and beat a good team with the best performance of his career against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday. Kolb completed 23 of 29 passes for 326 yards with three touchdowns and an interception as the Eagles steamrolled the Falcons, 31-17. With Mike Vick still sidelined with cartilage damage in his rib cage, Kolb got his second straight start and his second straight win. Head coach Andy Reid made it clear, or as clear as he makes things, that Vick will be his starter when he is healthy. Speaking of healthy, Kolb’s one bad pass, an ill-advised throw that led DeSean Jackson into a vicious collision with Atlanta cornerback Dunta Robinson left both men sprawled on the field. Jackson has a concussion and will likely miss next week’s game. Here are the highlights from a win that kept the Eagles in a first-place tie in the NFC East. OFFENSIVE HERO: Kolb was pretty darn good. His quarterback rating of 133.6 was a career best and he also got the bal...

PREVIEW: Eagles v. Falcons

PREVIEW: Eagles v. Falcons Who: Atlanta Falcons vs. Eagles What: Week 6 between an Eagles team, at 3-2, tied for first place in the NFC East and a 4-1 Falcons team alone at the top of the NFC South. When: Sunday, 1 p.m. Where: Lincoln Financial Field   Line: Eagles by 2 ½   Last Week: Eagles beat San Francisco, 27-24, as quarterback Kevin Kolb started in place of an injured Mike Vick and managed the offense efficiently, not making any crucial mistakes. Running back LeSean McCoy was the star, with 92 yards rushing and a touchdown, playing with a broken rib.  Atlanta beat Cleveland, 20-10, in a game that wasn’t decided until late in the fourth quarter. The win was the fouth straight for the Falcons after an opening-day overtime loss to Pittsburgh. Next Week: Eagles travel to Tennessee to play the Titans in an intra-conference battle. Atlanta goes home and hosts Cincinnati in another NFC/AFC matchup. Series Record: The Eagles are 16-11-1 overall against Atlanta, 8-5...
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  • 10/13/11: Players back the embattled coach = Birds smack Skins! Time for the usual second half run!
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