It has happened again. Despite falling for it every single time, and being burned again and again. Despite knowing it was going to happen, without a doubt, two weeks ago. Despite my better judgment, I'm hooked again. 6-5-1 is much, much worse than this team should be (If you can fool yourself into thinking they lost those close games due to bad luck, rather than being a bad team. I can, for the moment).
Andy Reid and his blatant self-serving, "coach for my job" philosophy has me believing the Birds can run the table and make it to the playoffs. After the jump we'll take a look at the road ahead.
|1||St. Louis||Win, 38-3||1-0|
|2||@ Dallas||Loss, 41-37||1-1|
|4||@ Chicago||Loss, 24-20||2-2|
|6||@ San Francisco||Win, 40-26||3-3|
|9||@ Seattle||Win, 26-7||5-3|
|10||New York Giants||Loss, 36-31||5-4|
|11||@ Cincinatti||Tie, 13-13||5-4-1|
|12||@ Baltimore||Loss, 7-36||5-5-1|
|14||@ New York Giants||--||--|
Was anyone out there shocked that the Eagles won a game in which Brian Westbrook was handed the ball 22 times? Of course not, well, maybe Andy Reid was. It's not hard to figure out, he's the best player on the field whenever he's on the field (and healthy). He shouldn't be reduced to a pass blocker or a decoy for 65% of the offensive plays. Andy finally coached like he actually comprehended this simple fact of life, and the Eagles beat a playoff team. They beat them handily.
I won't go as far as to say I think Andy has learned his lesson. Far from it, actually. But he's a pretty slick guy when it comes to job preservation. With an eye toward his future in the city (and his kids' future lawyer bills) Andy will coach smart for the rest of the season. He'll run our franchise running back into the ground, break his back with an extreme workload and all parts of the offense will start to click. Of course, this is all smoke and mirrors. Andy only wants to keep his job so he can right back to a 70/30 pass/run split next year, but for the time being, we're going to see some good football.
This weekend the Eagles make their annual trip to the swamp in NJ. They're going to face a Giants team that's been pasting everyone in the league. Fortunately for the Eagles, the Giants are in the middle of a crisis of sorts. They have their own mercurial wide receiver and he apparently likes to play with guns. Their best linebacker was also part of the scandal, but it looks like he'll probably play unless he's on a concrete vacation which is unlikely.
This turmoil may distract the Giants just enough for the Eagles to sneak out of NJ with a win. If they do, the playoffs loom. If they don't, well, then I've been fooled again and I'll be crushed by this team for last time this season.