S Rodney McLeod Kiel Leggere/Philadelphia Eagles

Wishbone

Ladies and Gentlemen:

That was easily the most frustrating loss of the season. Much more frustrating than those blowouts because the Eagles hung tough with a better team and had a good chance to win. 

Once again, the Eagles leaned on their running game and, we can only hope, have found their identity.

Also, once again, Defensive Coordinator Jonathan Gannon fell into his predictable Cover-2 defense, kept his safeties deep and did not blitz which allowed the Chargers to chew up the last six minutes of the fourth quarter and kick a winning field goal with almost no time left on the clock. 

Jalen Hurts and the Eagles offense did not even get a chance. The Eagles had three time outs and the two minute warning but Justin Herbert became the latest opposing quarterback to bend over the Eagles defense and treat them like a plastic sex doll. 

Here are some stats from Reuben Frank:

https://www.nbcsports.com/philadelphia/eagles/eagles-stats-birds-making-history-very-surprising-area

Roob does his homework.

The statistics regarding the running game, Devonta Smith and Jalen Hurts show real growth.

But the statistics regarding the defense? 

At this rate the Eagles D is going to set a lot of records and none of them are good.

And to think, at least two other teams were pursuing Jonathan Gannon. That’s not some Eagles marketing bulls—t. I read that in an Indianapolis paper. 

I just don’t understand how this guy fails to adapt throughout a football game. Even after his team had a few very impressive 4th down stops and had some momentum he refused to significantly change his game plan. 

Take those last six-plus minutes. I understand that he lost his top two cornerbacks. But dropping back into coverage just allowed Herbert to do what five other quarterbacks have already done this season. Take those little 8-12 yard routes and methodically work your way down the field. If there is no pressure, which there wasn’t, then the quarterback can do this all day. 

But, in my opinion, that’s why he should have been aggressive and not dropped back in coverage. He should have blitzed and played more man-to-man and bump and run. Even with the back-ups. If the Chargers would have scored on a deep pass play then at least the Eagles would have had another chance to get the ball back. Down by a touchdown with a few minutes left and the Chargers still had no answer for a determined Jalen Hurts. Maybe the Eagles can score and, knowing full well that their defense couldn’t stop a MAC Conference team, Mr. Aggressive/Flower Child/The Buck Stops Here Coach Nick Sirianni could have went for two and the Eagles win by one point. Or, at least go down swinging.

I get that everything would have to play out perfectly for this scenario to work.

But what we see from that defense over and over again is excruciating to watch. 

If you do what you’ve always done then you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.

Which is why it is so refreshing to see the Eagles run the ball so effectively. That is a welcome change from not only this year but the last gasps of the Doug Pederson era as well.

Think about it. The Chargers were putting eight guys in a box and the Eagles running back were still getting five yards per carry. Jordan Howard should have a role in this offense for the rest of the season. He is a great north/south bruising running back and it makes you wonder why he was not plucked off of the Eagles practice squad. 

Boston Scott has delivered like he always does, Kenny Gainwell is developing nicely and Miles Sanders is “chomping at the bit” to get back in there. 

Maybe this team should run the Wishbone?

I’m talking Old School smash mouth football! Three yards and a cloud of dust!

Now, as well as Jordan has played, those who are saying that the Eagles should trade Miles Sanders and start Howard are way off the mark. First of all, in today’s NFL you need at least three running backs. Second, how can you blame Sanders for the pathetic offensive play calling that was going on up until the Detroit game. Third, don’t forget Sanders’ average yards per carry and those big runs that he blows up and forces defenses to account for. 

Seriously, the thought that the Eagles should sit or trade Sanders is as dumb as blaming the guy in the car directly in front of you when you are sitting in a traffic jam. 

Go back and read Roob’s stats regarding Jalen Hurts. 

Like I said last week, every game or every down should not be an audition for Jalen Hurts. They need to give him more time. They need to let him know that he is the starter for the rest of the season no matter what. Patience. And, unless he completely regresses at the end if this season, maybe give him two seasons. 

I talk about this every week but after seeing him run the ball and take those hits in the fourth quarter I feel like I have to bring this up…again! He has some genuine raw talent and great leadership abilities. To trade away their first round picks for Russell Wilson who may give them a couple of good seasons or DeShaun Watson who, and I’m going to go out on a limb here, will probably get himself into more trouble would waste this once in a generation opportunity to reload. Secondary, D-line and especially linebackers is where they need to spend their draft capital. 

I don’t even want to see them draft a quarterback in the first round. It’s still not a guarantee. 

Please Howie. No one wants you to show us how big you think your penis is. Just wait to see if this guy keeps getting better. 

The Eagles are a 3-point underdog against the Broncos in Denver. The Broncos are coming off of a huge win in Dallas against the Cowboys. Teddy Bridgewater had a good day against a good Cowboys defense and this week he gets to face spineless Jonathan Gannon and the Eagles bend-and-then-break defense. 

It’s hard to bet on this team knowing that their defense is so unreliable.

But…

The Eagles are 0-4 at home and 3-2 on the road so being the visitors may be a good thing this week. I think that they continue to run the ball, Devonta Smith has a big day and the defense comes up with one big stop to allow the Eagles to win (or cover) in a shootout. It’s not a strong play but I’ll lay a little something. 

We all know that the Philadelphia fans have a bit of a reputation for being “passionate.” Some of it’s real and some of it’s hype. We also all know that whatever happens in the confines of the Linc, Citizen’s Bank Park or the Wells Fargo Center will only serve as fodder for those who believe that reputation is true without any type of nuance. 

Then I read this:

https://patch.com/pennsylvania/philadelphia/eagles-fans-are-rowdiest-nfl-new-survey-shows

Well, as the saying goes, “your reputation precedes you.”

But as I went down the rabbit hole of Google recommendations I found this interesting story regarding the famous prison cell in the bowels of the old Vet:

https://www.quora.com/Does-the-Philadelphia-Eagles-stadium-really-have-its-own-jail

95% of the people being arrested were not from Philadelphia. 

Well isn’t that something.

And then yesterday I received this:

https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/eagles-fans-voted-most-likely-to-start-and-win-a-fight-poll/

The fact that somebody would even poll this is remarkable. 

But the best thing about this link is that pictured for that shot in the German Sheppard mask sporting the Kelly green Wilbur Montgomery jersey is the RT’s own Dr. David Markowitz. I think this marks the 4,159th time that any iteration of that photo has been featured in some story about the Eagles. I couldn’t be prouder of the Markowitz clan.

Can you believe that somebody actually polled that question? Philly fans are the most likely to start and win a fight. Unbelievable.

It is better to be feared than loved.

Go Birds!

Eric Written by:

One Comment

  1. Mike Smith
    November 12, 2021

    Any Eagles RT that incorporates a clip from Bronx Tale is one of the greatest RT’s of all time!

    Gannon is an inexperienced, over-matched DC who will not be here next season. The bigger question is, how many players from the D unit will be back to torture us next season?

    The Eagles do not currently have 1 legit, talented, experienced LB on their roster.

    Their D line, heading in to next year, will feature 1 potential playmaker in Hargraves and 1 other, potentially, in Sweat. Graham will be returning from a serious injury, if he returns at all, so it’s unreasonable to expect him to contribute like he has in the past.

    The secondary has been beaten all year. Not just because of Gannon’s horrible schemes. They have been repeatedly beaten on 1-on-1 plays, Nelson and Slay and McLeod and others, where they simply cannot defend the pass.

    As a result, the upcoming draft will determine the Eagles’ fate for the next 5 years. They will either use their early round picks to completely reshape their D and make it, you know, into an actual NFL defense, or they will set themselves up for failure. Free agency cannot fix the problems the Eagles have on D. They need a flood of new, young players that can completely reshape the character of the unit. Mike Lombardi said this week that calling the current Eagles D a high school-caliber unit is a huge insult to high school teams across the country. He did not laugh when he said it. Gannon is certainly a big part of that story, but the players are as big a part, maybe bigger.

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