Before I address a win by the Eagles, pardon me for plugging my ears to that beeping sound. You know the one……when someone backs into something, the warning sound that is made in reverse? That is exactly what this win felt like…….like backing into a win. And, while I’ll certainly be happy with the win, and the fact that it keeps the Eagles atop the NFC East, I just have more questions than I have answers at this point of the season.
First, I’m not even going to address the offensive line. It is what it is. Lane Johnson is back, so that’s a plus. But, last week, with two shots at the goal, and two yards out, why not give it to LeSean McCoy, tuck behind Jason Peters, and see what happens? Sure, they may have been stopped, but throwing there was not the answer. But, I’m getting off-track here.
The game started out in amazing fashion. The Eagles blocked another punt in the end zone for a touchdown, second time in two weeks. Cody Parkey continues to be solid. And, judging from the performance of former Eagles kicker Alex Henery in Detroit yesterday, Parkey looks to be the right choice for this club.
But then, well…….you all saw it. The defense looked extremely suspect again. In some ways, I blame the league for making the penalties for contact so strict in the secondary. But, we’re looking at a team that gave up 375 yards passing to Austin Davis. I’ll pause for a bit, and let that one really take its hold. Austin Davis. A third-stringer for the Rams that got pressed into duty when Sam Bradford and Shaun Hill went down with injuries. Austin Davis, who was once cut by the Rams, played with the Miami Dolphins’ practice squad, and then returned to St. Louis. Austin Davis, who was a walk-on at Southern Miss, not exactly a football powerhouse, and he couldn’t even get a scholarship. This guy should be selling stocks or insurance somewhere. Not throwing for 375 yards, and 3 touchdowns. If this guy can do this against the Eagles secondary, what are other, more established quarterbacks, with more on their resume going to do against this team?
This game was practically dead even. St. Louis even led in total number of plays, Coach Kelly’s favorite statistic. Foles didn’t look all that great. It was as if he had a bit of a 49ers hangover. And, if that’s the case, then I’ll certainly give him a pass. It just seemed as if once the Eagles got their big lead, they sat on it, and waited for the clock to hit zero. But, someone forgot to tell St. Louis to stop playing.
Botton line is this: It’s a win. It runs them to 4-1, still atop the NFC East. And, with the NY Giants on a 2-game streak, it makes this week’s game at the Linc huge, as far as division implications are concerned. Win, and The Eagles can go into the bye week with 5 wins in 6 games. Lose, and they go in at 4-2, with the Cowboys and Giants all in a jumble with the Eagles.
Was yesterday a case of a team, coming off its bye, looking to come out hot, and steal one on the road, or was it a case of the home team trying to recover from last week’s loss, still staggering, like a boxer that has just taken a standing eight count? In any event, when it was all said and done, it was a win. And ugly win, to be sure, but a win, nonetheless. There are no moral victories in this league.
Get your rest, Eagles. Study your film, and be prepared for Sunday. The Giants surely will be. Take 5 wins into the bye week, and let the rest of the division know, that as defending champion, the road to the crown goes right through 1 Lincoln Financial Field Way.