The headline was the Eagles' formula for success today in a gutsy 15-6 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers
Early in the 4th quarter Andy Reid came to the realization that as long as the Eagles offense didn't make a mistake, there was no way the defense would give up this game. They called plays accordingly. Usually, I hate this tactic. Today, it was the absolute right call. The offense was severely banged up and honestly, the Eagles all the points they could need. The strategy worked so well, in fact, that the defense was able to tack another five points on. Two came on a safety and the other three were set up Weapon X.
On Roethlisberger's final play of the day, the Eagles blitzed and got immediate pressure on him. He shrugged off the first guy to get there, then Dawkins took flight, literally, in mid-air he swatted the ball out of Roethlisberger's hand, then landed on the ball to set up the final field goal. It was Dawk's second huge play of the quarter, the other coming on a stuffed run inside the five.
The Eagles pass rush was relentless and they stymied the run. Actually, that last part is an understatement. The Steelers managed 33 yards on 19 carries. I'm not sure they've invented a word to describe that level of dominance yet.
Sav Rocca came up with three huge punts which helped the defense immensely. With the Eagles pinned to their own goal line, he unleashed a 64-yarder which completely flipped the field-position battle. He followed that punt up with 2 more punts pinning the Steelers inside the 10.
It wasn't all roses today. Tony Hunt went down early. Then the worst-case scenario happened, Brian Westbrook left with an injury. To add insult to injury, McNabb was late coming out of the locker room after the half and Kevin Kolb started under center. Luckily, McNabb wasn't out long. CBS did an atrocious job with this game. Phils Simms is a complete moron. After Westbrook went out in the first quarter they failed to give an update until the Eagles got the ball back in the third quarter. No mention of the injury on the halftime show either. I still don't really know what happened to him or how serious it is. Cross your fingers until we get official word.
2-1 at this point of the season isn't too shabby. More on this one tomorrow.Offensive Player of The Game:
Hank Baskett, 8 catches, 85 yardsDefensive Player of The Game:
DawkshowSpecial Teams Player of The Game: