A hit. A crushing hit. A fumble into the end zone. A defensive recovery. 38-23. Final. One crushing hit too many.
The tragedy may have been written. The last sentence possibly dotted. There will be no revision or editing, no means to change what has been. Sunday’s heartbreaking 38-23 loss to the rival Dallas Cowboys may have nailed the coffin shut for the 14 year head coach. The Eagles now stand–well, lay–at 3-6, with a 2.5 game pothole in the route between them and the Super Bowl Champion Giants. With the number of overall mistakes made, the gap seems to be a canyon.
From the moment Jeremy Maclin cowardly short-armed a pass with 2:38 left in the 2nd quarter–he made up for it with 8 catches, 93 yards, and a TD–fans knew they had read this novel before. The contradicting playcalling at the end of the first half made even Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham appear sophisticated. To the third quarter the game went, and the offensive line finally caught up to the Eagles. King Dunlap was called for an illegal hands to the face penalty, one of multiple infractions by him. Following this was an absolute collapse of punt return coverage. Then came the dropped pass by DeSean Jackson–whom has had a resurgent season thus far with 42 catches, 686 yards, and 2 TDs–which was caught by Brandon Carr and run in for a silencing pick-6.
Various mistakes, penalties, missed tackles plagued the Eagles once again Sunday. The team has a definite ability to win football games, even enough to fight on in January. The smooth, urgent, confident opening drive taunted fans with a finesse. Nick Foles has a fearlessness about him, a never say die mentality that allows him to throw against any defensive look. In a sudden pandemonium, Foles was thrust into the game after 2 month without live action, with limited work in practice, with limited everything as a rookie making his NFL debut. He brings an aura about him, that could well be the spark needed to ignite a run, a playoff run, a super run. That is a question for later, as right now a certain Griffin awaits.
Hope will always exist, as long as mathematics and logic do not wipe it away. Upon the news that Nick Foles will start Sunday, reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, an excitement is in the air. Like it or not, the Eagles are scheduled to play a football game. As Herm Edwards explained it, “You play to win the game!” While fans ask for the head of Andy Reid, a decision will not be reached until the end of the season. On Eagles Live! at philadelphiaeagles.com today, Dave Spadaro simplified the situation in a simple sentence.
“If the Eagles don’t win, what do you think is going to happen? Do you think I’m stupid? Do you think anyone in the building is stupid? Lets just get to 4-6!”
As Mr. Spadaro preaches, there is no point waiting until the dreaded “Black Monday.” Said day is 7 weeks from now. While we wait, why not believe in the laws of math until they betray us. There is a famous clip, from an even more famous movie that displays the true ideals of optimism. Do not waste your time Eagles fans: either watch, hope, and believe, or do not watch at all.
One thing is for sure. There’s a chance.