THE EAGLE IS GROUNDED

IMG_0012     As exciting as it was to watch the Philadelphia Eagles beat the Washington Redskins in Week #1…there were still many unanswered questions that arose after watching “The Oregon Duck” offensive system.  One thing I believe that escaped the cracks in the fallout from Week #1 was how God Awful this defense could really be this season.  I mean, going into this season it appeared that the Eagles had at least improved in some aspects of their Defensive side of the ball.  However, after Sunday’s loss to the Chargers, it appears that there are infinite cracks in the Eagles armor.  

First of all, the Eagle’s secondary is hideous.  That may be too nice of a word.  For those of you that are from my generation, their Secondary SUCKS!  Ok…that sounds better.  Nate Allen is an absolute disgrace of a safety and he makes Erik McMillan (Safety 1988-1993) look like an ALL-PRO.  Nate Allen can’t do anything right at the Safety Position.  He consistently gets burned by fast receivers.  In fact…he gets burned by average receivers like Eddie Royal of the San Diego Chargers.  

     Nate Allen may also be the worst tackler I have ever saw in the NFL.  He should be cut yesterday.  The other Eagle’s Safety, Patrick Cheung is average at best.  He made a few tackles on Sunday, but he is not suited to the 3-4 Defense that is employed by the Eagles at this time.  Now let us go to the Cornerback Position.  Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams are considered O.K. by NFL standards, but O.K. does not cut it in today’s Pass Hungry/Offensive Happy League.  I mean, a few years back we had Lito Shepherd and Sheldon Brown.  So much has changed since then.  First, the Eagles signed Asante Samuels in a move that looking back, had the if you can’t beat them…join them MOTTO.  In other words, the New England Patriots were the top standard not only on offense, but their Defense was stellar as well.  Samuel had a few good seasons, he was a playmaker.  However, he would not even fit this defensive system.  And do we have to rehash the nightmare named Nhamdi Asamugha.  I am not even sure if I even spelled his name right…but who cares, he may have been in the TOP 10 Eagles WORST Free Agent Signings of all time.

     We as fans were also sold a bill of goods when we were told that our Linebacker Core had improved.  Maybe on paper this was true.  The Free Agent Demaco Ryans from last year, draft pick Brandon Graham, Casey Matthews, etc.  However, these linebackers were torn apart by an older Tight End Antonio Gates and a career number three wide receiver Eddie Royal.  The Middle was like a war zone and all of the Chargers land mines struck the gold target.  The Eagles could not cover the middle, which also made them susceptible to the Deep Crossing Pass.

     Now let us look at the most important part of the 3-4 Defense, the Defensive Line.  The down lineman need to get a push up the middle to allow the outside linebackers to put pressure on the quarterback.  There is only one problem with this…what happens when the Defensive Line cannot even sniff the quarterback??  Who is Cedric Thornton?  He is one of the Eagle’s Defensive Starting Ends.  He wears Number 72.  Well, do you want to hear a funny stat.  Thornton was almost on the field for all of the Eagle’s Defensive Plays…minus a few.  Well, We never heard his name called once…not even on the television.  Does Cedric Thornton exist?  Was he really playing Sunday or was it just a mirage.  The Eagles managed just one sack and one hurry.  Phillip Rivers looked like Terry Bradshaw in his heyday, sitting back in the pocket ALL DAY LONG…one play even kept alive for 20 seconds.  Sorry, I am a die hard Eagles fan, but these facts are UNACCEPTABLE.  This Defense is putrid!

I was listening to 94 WYSP, the Eagle’s post-game show as I usually do on Sunday.  I was driving home from work having missed the entire game.  But I did not have to see the game to know that the Defense played horribly.  The stats showed it all.  I always look at sacks, hurries, and pressures and you can usually see if a defense was good, despite the final score.  Also, yards allowed is a key number.  Well, the Eagles gave up over 500 Yards to the Chargers offense!  Yeah, thats not a mistake folks…500 Yards.  What did the Eagles forget this was the NFL.  Well, while listening to the post-game show I heard many dumb callers.  However, the dumbest call of the day belonged to some fan who truly believes that the Eagles are going to go 14-2 and win their first Super Bowl.  Come AGAIN!!!  Are You Kidding me?!  He said that this was an anomaly and that the Eagles can win no matter what with their High Octane Offense.  He referred to the New Orleans Saints and New York Giants who had the 31st and 30th worst defenses the years that they won their Super Bowls.  There is one huge difference here.  Although those defenses did give up points, they also put plenty of pressure on the quarterback.

Hearing this guy made my stomach cringe.  First and foremost, I am extremely excited about this Offense and I am a true believer in Chip Kelly.  Furthermore, I do believe that we can win a lot of games by outscoring opponents.  However, I am a die hard fan.  And as an Eagles fan, I still go by the mantra that Defense wins Championships.  Wow, I truly miss those Bud Carson and Jim Johnson Defenses.  Even remember the Buddy Ryan era…the Eagles always had a potent offense but they were lead by their defense.  I am afraid to admit it, but until this team addresses it’s defensive woes, I do not feel that they will be going anywhere.  They could sign Calvin Johnson and Brandon Marshall and A.P.  Their offense can be as potent as they want but they have to be able to have some assembly of a Defense.  So…Chip Kelly, if you are listening, please address this defense ASAP.  And also, let me give you one huge piece of advice…please do not ever mention the words…”I need to do a better job next time.”  Seriously, we spent the last fourteen years listening to that same phrase and we grew to HATE the person who spoke those words.  So, create another phrase for press conferences and interviews.  And no matter what you do the rest of the year, a win Thursday is an absolute MUST!!!!!  I cannot watch Andy Reid beat this team.  I just can’t.

REVAMPED EAGLES GAME DAY WEEK#1

Here we are folks…the day that all of us Die Hard Eagles fans look forward to every year…Opening Day! There is only one thing that we are and have been looking to more and that is to finally win a Super Bowl! Unfortunately I am not here to tell you they will win one this yet or anytime soon. However, I am here to tell you that as a DIE HARD…Eat, Sleep, Bleed Green…that this team has a chance to be exciting.

Fourteen Years is a long time in any stretch of the word. For the past fourteen years us Eagles fans have had to suffer, cheer, be disappointed, a roller coaster of emotions. Under Andy Reid, this team has enjoyed one of its best runs in history. There will be so many memories for us all. These long lasting memories are burned in our brains.

The first memory coming at the 1998 Draft…when the Eagles took Donovan McNabb with the first pick and a 100 unhappy fans that traveled up the turnpike booed. Wow! Yes I will never forget that. Then I remember it was like week 7 or 8 that season, Donovan McNabb behind Tutor Doug Pederson getting his first game action. There is the Redskins game when he made the triple step and fakes out the Redskins secondary on the way to a first down.

There was 2001.the unprecedented trip to the NFC Championship and a lead at the half against the heavily favored Rams. Then it was Marshall Faulk who ran up and down and our Super Bowl hopes were dashed by the Rams as a fourth down pass slipped through the outstretched of receiver Freddie Mitchell.

Then there was 2002, the year all of the nation really thought that the Eagles were going to win the big one finally. The trip to the second NFC Championship, this time at home. This would be our last moment as Eagles fans in the Vet. Tampa Never has won in Philly during blah blah blah these kinds if conditions…when it’s colder than 40Degrees! We had them guys! We were right there. Duce Staley runs in am Eagles Touchdown early in the first quarter and then that was it. Another chance squandered as Ronde Barber picked off a pass that will live in infamy. The Buccaneers went on to win their first Super Bowl behind Brad Johnson (journey man).

Then the 2003 season…after Brian Westbrook and the magical season that ended in the NFC Championship at the Linc! The once again heavily favored Eagles fell to the soon be Super Bowl bound Carolina Panthers. I will never forget Donovan getting knocked out of that game. The feeling of hopelessness as fans as the Panthers ran for over 200 yards.

The signings of perennial pro bowlers Terrell Owens and Jevon Kearse. That magical run in 2004 where everything the Eagles did turned to gold. That Monday Night game against Dallas when Donovan McNabb went off and had that wild scramble that ended up in a Touchdown. Then the Extreme Cold at the Linc facing the Atlanta Falcons in their fourth straight NFC Championship. The big hits on Michael Vick and Alge Crumpler. The Eagles finally winning the NFC. Brian Dawkins holding that trophy high above his head. And then the Super Bowl…Terrell Owens playing hurt. The almost win and then a win taken away. The mismanagement of the clock. The loss. These are all memories burned in our brains.

Ok…then the McNabb/TO fallout, the disappointment the next few seasons. Then the glimmer of hope in playoff games against the New Orleans Saints. The playoff game against the Arizona Cardinals…another chance to go to a SuperBowl. And finally the last few painful years. Well folks…these memories will last until we finally win the big one.

However, I bring some good news as the Eagles are now under a new regime. It may take a few seasons to get back to excellence, but the Eagles will get there. Mark my words. Chip Kelly turned around an Oregon program that was in a similar situation. The Ducks had been good and then the coach lost the team. Kelly rebuilt the Ducks and they have been a powerhouse ever since. He will do the same with the Eagles.

Don’t expect great things this year. However, there is so much promise and hope that us Eagles fans can hold onto. And it all starts tonight on Monday Night. Just like that Monday night in Washington which seems like eternities ago. The Eagles march into Washington as underdogs. No one really knows what to expect from this team as Kelly did not show much in preseason. However, tonight there will definitely be some offensive excitement! Hopefully this Defense has matured and learns to play within its limits.

Ok…it’s almost GOTIME!!!!! So as we prepare for another Eagles Season…lets do the chant that we can only hope will last deep into January and a trip to the big dance! Until next time…E-A-G-L-E-S!!!! Eagles!!!!!!!

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Philly Needs an Overhaul

My how things have changed the past few years. I can remember back as recently as 2010 when the Flyers were in the Stanley Cup, The Phillies made the NLCS, The 76ers made the playoffs and the Eagles had a stellar season behind Michael Vick. Fast Forward 2 years! The NHL is probably going to skip a season (already half way into the labor dispute and lockout), The Phillies missed the playoffs and finished close to the basement in the NL East, The Sixers are still inconsistent and not close to winning a championship and the Eagles???? The Eagles?? Well, the Eagles are fading fast and are in a state of disarray. At 3-7 now, the Eagles are well on their way to their worst record since 1998 when Andy Reid took over this team, 14 seasons ago. When Andy Reid arrived in Philly, the Eagles were a team with some talent that needed a good leader and strategist. When Andy Reid and the Eagles drafted Donovan McNabb in 1998, the tables were turning. Jim Johnson built one of the most powerful defenses in the Eagles history. Five straight NFC Championships, One Superbowl, Countless memories followed as the Eagles closed down the VET, moved into the LINC, Grew into one of the real powerhouses in the NFL. The Eagles were the NFC version of the New England Patriots…without the Superbowl wins lol. The Eagles were a very successful team and provided Philadelphia with many great memories. However, the past few seasons have been inconsistent and disheartening to say the least. A few seasons back, the Eagles signed Michael Vick and traded Donovan McNabb. McNabb took most of the blame for the Eagle’s failure in the 11 years under his reign. Yes, McNabb was not the most accurate quarterback the Eagles ever had. McNabb did blow it in the Superbowl. McNabb did get injured a lot. Nonetheless, McNabb holds every Eagles quarterback record in history. He was the winningest quarterback they ever had. McNabb was a good leader at one point in his career. Let us not forget, the NFL is a team game (just ask the New England Patriots and New York Giants). After McNabb was traded, Michael Vick had one good season and all of the experts were saying…see…it was McNabb’s fault. These experts failed to place any blame on the team’s coach, Andy Reid. Jim Johmson’s untimely passing was another turning point in the Philadelphia Eagles history. The Defense has not been the same and the Eagles made Juan Castillo the Defensive Coordinator last year. No one could argue that the Eagles did not have talent on that side of the ball. I mean, they signed Namdi Asomgha to one of the largest contracts for a Cornerback in the history of the NFL. They also boasted the NFL’s sack leader and a very good defensive line. Fast forward to 2012…Juan Castillo is fired and he takes the blame for the Philadelphia Eagles failures. Well, Castillo is gone and this defense is playing even worse. It’s truly time for Jeff Lurie to throw loyalty to the side and replace Andy Reid now. This version of the Philadelphia Eagles is pathetic. It is obvious that Andy Reid has lost this team. The team lacks respect for him and there is no leadership. They have the arguably the worst offensive line in NFL history. Michael Vick showed his true colors, that he really is not the Quarterback that will take this team to Championship. Now LeSean McCoy, their superstar running back, the one weapon that this team has that really is one of the best in the NFL, has received a concussion after taking a hard hit in the last two minutes of a game. The Eagles, who were losing by 30 points to the Washington Redskins were finished. Andy Reid, when asked why McCoy was still in the game, answered “We were trying to win the game.” C’MON Andy….get real!!!! You have lost your marbles. This team is finished. The time for rebuilding is now. Why wait until the end of the season. This team needs a drastic change now. Andy Reid is done. Forget all of the good things he has done for this team. The goal of any NFL franchise is to WIN the Superbowl! Well, in 14 seasons under Reid the Eagles have exactly one appearance (a loss to the Patriots) in a Superbowl. If this was any other company or corporation, Reid would have been replaced a long time ago. Well, Reid is still here. Jeff Lurie has let loyalty reign above results. This is a huge mistake. Lurie, I hope that you will finally listen to the fans…we really are not stoopid. We really are NFL fans and we DO understand the game. It is so obvious that Andy Reid has lost this team and a change is necessary. Why are you waiting…Andy Reid should be with his family anyway, after losing his son earlier this season. Please restore the good feeling in Philly again. Bring the Eagles back to respectable again in the NFL. Andy Reid must go. This is not personal, this is an anomaly. It is time for this team to rebuild from the top on down. If I’m Lurie, everyone goes except LeSean McCoy!!! He is the only true talent that is untouchable. We need a DEFENSIVE minded coach again. Defense really does still win Championships. As good as the Patriots Offense has been under their dominance the past fifteen years, Their Defense has truly been their backbone. We need a change. This does not just go for this Football Team. The Baseball Team also needs to rebuild. After their World Series win in 2008, this team has still had playoff success but if you really look close at the team they have gotten old. They have declined tremendously both in talent and success. It’s ashame, after the Phillies traded for and signed Roy Halladay, it looked like they may be on their way to a dynasty. Then the Four Aces…Halladay, Lee, Hammels, and Oswalt. Fast forward, Oswalt is gone, Halladay was injured and had his worst season in ten years, Lee was inconsistent and not the dominant force he had been the previous five years, only Hammels was good as promised. Chase Utley is done. Ryan Howard is on a decline. They do not have a young nucleus. This team also needs to rebuild. Charlie it’s been nice knowing you. Back to the Eagles, C’MON!!! Nick Foles first start in the NFL, and you make him drop back 43X!!!!! Four Sacks, countless rushes and hurries! Reid…you will never get it!!!! Quarterbacks have changed, lines have changed, defenses have changed. The one mainstay is Reid. Now it is time for Jeff Lurie to give this city some hope! Please hear the voice of the FAN!

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FIRE REID

I don’t normally do this and this is very much out of character for me. What I mean is that I don’t normally blog about the Eagles solely…and I never blog during a game that is still in progress. However, As a Die Hard Eagles fan since I was born…I cannot take anymore of this team. I don’t care who the quarterback is at this point. The offensive line this team is starting couldn’t beat my Atco little league team down the street. This defensive line has no spark. This team hasn’t had a punt or kick return for a touchdown in two years. This team cannot ever make big plays. These are all characteristics that the Eagles possess. But this is not the problem with this team. 14 years and counting. What is the significance of that number. The significance is that the Eagles have been coached by Andy Reid for 14 years and they have still yet to win a SuperBowl. That is the ultimate goal in the NFL. Please do not give me injuries as an excuse. Please do not blame McNabb, Westbrook, Dawkins, or any of the other star players that have donned the green and black! When Jim Johnson passed away…a huge piece of this team was taken away. The heart and soul of the Eagles team has always been its defense. The past two years the defense has been brutal. Last year it sucked. This year it’s even worse. Juan Castillo was already fired but he is just the scapegoat. Andy Reid put together this team and he must be held accountable for its record…success and failure. For the record…I am an Andy Reid fan and I do believe that he is definitely one of the best coaches this franchise has ever had. However….He has lost this team. There is no heart! There is no leadership! There is no game plan. There is no adjustments. There is no hope. Right now this team needs to rebuild from the top to the bottom. The only players that I would keep going into next year would be LeSean McCoy, Trent Cole, Demarco Ryan’s, Domenic Cromartie, and Nick Foles. Scrap the rest of the team. Rebuild means draft smart, sign key free agents, build dormant offensive and defensive lines. Well to start the rebuilding process…Lurie should get the ball rolling today and cut his losses. Fire Reid. Set an example. These players deserve to be humiliated. They have quit on their boss. They have lost all rhyme or reason. Fire Reid today. Why wait. To save Face! Hell No!!!! Reid Must Go! Lurie…stop being loyal it gets you nowhere. I hope that enough people will support this petition to get rid of Reid. He must be gone tomorrow. Do not let him coach another game. Start the rebuilding today! We as Fans deserve much better. This has gotten out of hand and this team is pathetic. Reid is the problem and has been for years. His stubbornness has cost the Eagles many chances to go further. He is to proud to beg. It took losing Michael Vick getting knocked out to run the ball! C’MON! You have one of the best running backs in the game and barely use him. Sorry…but it’s time for you to go Big Red. Maybe you could just so yourself a favor and resign. Ok…now I feel much better. Had to get that off my chest!!!! Hopefully Monday the 12th will be Reid’s swan song.

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ANOTHER EAGLES/GIANTS EPIC BATTLE

McNabb avoids Michael Strahan rush and passes to Todd Pinkston in corner of end zone TOUCHDOWN….Eagles win in last minute 10-9 at the Meadowlands.
That was 1999. 2003….Eagle’s season in the balance…trailing the Giants 10-7 once again at the Meadowlands…1:34 seconds left on the clock. Brian Westbrook back to field the punt…he…could…go…..all….THE……….
WAY! Touchdown Eagles beat the Giants again in the last minute. 2010….Another wild one at the Meadowlands. Eagles trailing Giants by 31-10 in 4th quarter. They score 3 unanswered touchdowns to tie the score at 31-31. With only 14 seconds Desean Jackson was back to field a punt…a low line drive that he muffs. He then picks it up and scampers through numerous missed tackles for the Game Winning Punt Return! The last Monday Night Football game at the Vet and Brian Dawkins levels Ike Hilliard knocking the ball out and icing the game for the Eagles! Eagles trail Giants 17-16 w/ 2:00 left at the Lincoln! Eagles drive down and kick a FG….19-17, but there is over a minute left for Eli to bring the Giants back down the field. He seems to have a game winning drive in him as they drive down to within 54 yards. Lawrence Tynes for the win….He MISSES!….wait…wait…oh no! Andy Reid called a timeout to ice the kicker. Ok…Lawrence Tynes back again….The kick is up…it’s…..No Good! NO Good! Are u kidding me…what an ending to an epic battle. Everytime these Division Rivals battle it out something always occurs. This was a defensive hold out. The Eagles also backed your statement. Well anyways…Great win for the Birds to go 3-1. They have now won 3 games they should have 1.

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