• July 4, 2022

My Thoughts Eagles/Bears

This Eagles loss would not have been nearly as bad if the New York Giants would have just done what they were supposed to and lost to the New England Patriots on Sunday. But, they won and so the Eagles now find themselves three games back in the division and in really poor shape in the overall playoff picture. This one was a signature 2011 loss for the Eagles: 4th quarter lead and plenty of finger pointing to go around. So, let’s look at the game:

What I liked…

-LeSean McCoy was strong again. You get this guy a little space and he is absolute murder. Is he a top-five back in the NFL? It’s easy to say yes right off the bat, but there is some stiff competition at the top when you start comparing the players individually. A.P.? He’s No. 1. You have to also consider Darren McFadden (when healthy of course, that’s why I give Shady the edge on him), Matt Forte, Ray Rice, MJD, Arian Foster, any-other-year Chris Johnson, and yes, even Fred Jackson. Where do you rank him?

-Hey! They even gave it to him on fourth and inches and he picked up the yardage with ease. They handed the ball off the right way (for once) in that situation, but we’ll still give credit where it’s due.

-I have to give this offensive line credit. The guy who was starting over Danny Watkins through the first few games was released, so that tells you something about Watkins’ development. Jason Peters played very well. Todd Herremans might be this team’s MVP when you consider where he’s been asked to play and how he’s performed. And he absolutely leveled Urlacher last night on a play where even Urlacher had to give him a fist bump. Considering how god awful this unit was starting the season, they’ve really picked it up.

-You have to love Matt Forte. I can’t decide who is better between him and LeSean McCoy. Shady has the jaw-dropping moves, but Forte can drag people four yards before going down. Different skill sets, both are phenomenal.

-Excellent, excellent job on Devin Hester in the return game. They were better than touchbacks. Short, high kicks that let the coverage get there and nail him inside the 15-yard line a few times. Great job. Lofty job (had to get a little Peter King in there). Blueprint for the NFL-type job.

-Modern Warfare 3 comes out today. Have to like that.

-Nice to have Brent Celek return as an offensive weapon. Missed you, Brent.

-I liked the fake punt call. I did. It’s a genius/idiot move. If you make it you’re a genius, if you don’t you’re a moron. But, the fact that the play didn’t execute didn’t take away from the fact that I thought it was a good, gutsy call in a game that was a typical Eagles/Bears oddball game.

-Brandon Graham got close a few times. I’ll give him credit. Hasn’t played in forever.

-I like Mike Tirico. He doesn’t have the great play-by-play voice of a Pat Summerall or Al Michaels, but he is locked into the game. One word I think of when I think of Tirico is “astute.” He’s paying attention, and I don’t feel like all broadcasters do that. I remember in 2008 when DeSean Jackson crossed the goal line in Dallas on what would have been his first NFL touchdown, I instantly thought, “oh man I don’t think he crossed the goal line with that.” A split second later Tirico said something to the effect of, “did he have possession when he crossed the goal line?!” We know how that turned out. But, while I like Tirico a lot…

…and not so much…

-I realized a couple of weeks ago that I absolutely cannot stand to listen to Ron Jaworski and Jon Gruden. These two are absolutely horrific. “You want to talk about a big play in the National Football League, this guy makes big plays in the National Football League. Watch here as…” We’re watching! I have the television set on and I’m watching. I promise. Like they went to the Paul McGuire School of Broadcasting. After every play, he’d let out a chuckle as if he was in on some sort of information that the rest of us didn’t have and say, “I wantchu to watch sumpin’ right here…watchiss….watch as he….” Sweet holy Moses. I can’t stand it. And I’ve always respected Jaws’ opinion, he’s a very bright guy. But he seems to have Gruden rubbing off on him. They sound like the same guy and that same guy is just terrible. No insight whatsoever. I thought they were dating Lance Briggs for a while last night.

-Soooooo….where was the pass rush? They didn’t get to Cutler once? It’s easy to blame the secondary on some of those passes to pedestrian receivers (at best), but no NFL corner can run around with an NFL receiver for too long. Just can’t happen. And how long do you need to see the pass rush not happening from the front four before you mix it up with some blitzes? I’m no defensive genius, Juan.

-DRC is a turd. He has enormous talent, but who cares? Did anyone else notice that he gave up a first-down pass and then stood there and sulked in the first half while everyone else brought him to the ground? My buddy EJ in Arizona was right when he texted me after the trade: “He’s great…if you can get him to play hard.” Well, he’s not. I’ve seen him walking numerous times during plays this season. The good news is the Cardinals aren’t exactly tap dancing about what they got either. At least the Eagles have that second-round pick to waste on an undersized defensive player who went to a no-name school and can’t get off blocks. So yeah, there’s that.

-I watched last night’s game with a couple friends that know the game well. Numerous times after big Bears completions, we’d immediately complain about Nnamdi. Then we’d see the replay….that damn zone! This is my main complaint about Andy Reid and the Eagles. It’s this! You brought in Nnamdi why? Oh, because he’s an insane shutdown, man-to-man corner. And you are playing him in unfamiliar territory, which is the zone scheme. This is what I can’t stand and I complain about it every week. You acquire a player because you like what he does and then you have him not do what he does. This make any sense to anyone else? I must be the dumbest person on the planet, because I cannot, for the life of me, figure this out. This is one of the biggest reasons for the Eagles year-in and year-out shortcomings. Greg Lewis never returned punts before. He’ll be fine! Chris Gocong had 22 1/2 sacks at Cal Poly last year. Stand up and cover tight ends! Brandon Graham is probably a 3-4 linebacker at the NFL level. Let’s trade up and make him a 4-3 end! What could go wrong!?

-Well, Juan, it was a quiet three weeks for you with a win, a bye and a win. Again, I don’t blame you, buddy. You were an offensive line coach who some part-time moron (I say part-time because Andy is extremely intelligent in many areas. That’s why he’s so frustrating) made a defensive coordinator. I seriously have no clue what you are doing over there and by the looks of it, your players don’t either.

-I mentioned the pass rush before, right? Good.

-How about that first drive? Andy Reid should send Mike Martz a Christmas card for being so insanely stupid. Why would you ever throw a pass after Matt Forte just trampled the Eagles defense in a way that Rush Limbaugh dreams about doing to the Occupy Wall Street protesters? How could Martz get away from that? I’ve spoken to a few players who played for Martz and their opinion is far from glowing. You know why Martz has an offensive coordinator position in the NFL? He gave Lovie Smith his first defensive coordinator position with the Rams when he was the head coach. I’ve spoken with people in the league that have confirmed that that’s the only reason he has that job. He was out of the league before that.

-So yeah, the Eagles can’t stop the run. At all. They stopped DeMarco Murray last week because the score got out of hand. The Eagles explosive offense is the only way they can stop the run. Why is that? Is it scheme? Nope, don’t think so. Could it possibly have something to do with the fact that almost the entire front seven is undersized? Oh do tell!

-Soooo….when you scrap the Wide 9, Jason Babin goes back to being the Jason Babin that the Eagles had here two years ago? Let’s remember that first-round pick Gabe Carimi was out and this Bears line is pretty awful. Just wanted to add that in there.

-Overall team tackling is just terrible. And I’m sorry, that isn’t coaching. You’re in the NFL. You got here for a reason. That’s just poor.

-DeSean Jackson wants to get paid. Well, I want a pony. Is it me or is this guy regressing? Safeties playing deep are taking away the deep shot. So, what is he then? I mean besides a guy that is too lazy to secure the football on a punt return. If he muffed it, I’d understand. You didn’t secure the football. Does he room with Maclin?

-Michael Vick is loads of fun to watch and has skills that 99.9% of athletes on the planet can only dream about. But, I don’t know that he’s the guy that will take the Eagles to the promised land. Reminds me a lot of Allen Iverson, who I was a huge fan of. On any given day, you have a chance to beat anyone with this guy on your team. He’s that good. But, are they the guy to really get it done? I don’t think Vick is.

-I read a very interesting piece a few weeks ago about why any offensive line is going to be poor with Vick on their team, regardless of how they are playing as a unit. Most of the article was typical stuff that we all know, reading defenses and such. But, they raised one point that I had not previously thought of: Watch Vick drop back 30 times and he’ll do it at a different speed every time. The offensive line needs to get a feel for where their QB is, and scrambling aside, Vick doesn’t help from the word “go.” Sometimes he starts slow and then speeds up. Sometimes he just goes slow. Sometimes he sprints immediately and then slows down. He’s all over the place. These little things don’t get noticed as much because his athleticism covers up so much.

-So, I noticed that in a goal-to-go situation, Casey Matthews was in there. On a night when you can’t stop anyone from running? Do we have an explanation for that?

-Awful call on Jason Babin for roughing the passer. He was clearly shoved into Cutler. That umm…kind of mattered.

This Eagles season isn’t technically over, but it’s on life support. They would have to go on a tear (entirely possible. No one thought they could do it in 2008 after the Ravens game) and the Giants would have to start losing games. That’s also entirely possible, because as much as everyone wants to laud them for beating the Patriots on the road, this was the same team that almost lost to the Dolphins at home the week before. The good news is, for all the Andy Reid haters, this might be the season that gets him booted finally. I don’t know that that’s the answer as a couple in the front office (I’m talking about you, Howie Roseman, whatever it is you actually do) should go too. It’ll be interesting to say the least.

For more nonsense, you can follow me on Twitter @OTRSportsonline. Or check OTR itself for more inappropriate stuff that gets me called on the carpet by Michael Irvin.

Micah Warren

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  • “This Eagles season isn’t technically over, but it’s on life support.”
    Agreed. This team is not playing like a playoff caliber team right now. They are Lukewarm at best. While I don’t see the Giants being a big contender to go deep into the playoffs, they have a better record and have already beaten the Eagles once. True we get to play them again but it won’t mean Jack unless we get a few more wins on the board. Very Disappointed in this group to say the least.

  • I am not mathematician, but as a Football/Eagle Fan, This Season is over as far as playoffs go.. The Eagles may tease us and win the next 2 games to get back to 5-5 but there are 9 teams ahead of the Eagles for 6 SPots
    6 of the teams have 2 to 3 and even 4 game leads over the Eagles based on beating the Eagles head to head.. I see no chance of Eagles making it in
    unless they go 7-1 or 6-2 the remainder of the Season while having the
    Giants & Cowboys finishing 2-6 to win the NFC East.. I’ve stated numerous times that the Wild Cards will come out the NFC North (between the Lions & Bears) and the NFC South (between the Saints,Falcons & TB Bucs)

    Does anyone still think that D-Jax is worth a 4-5-6 Year Deal at $50-$60-$75 million dollar deal (when you incluide his bonus..) I never have and his play over the last year of so just keeps confiming this belief to me.
    I would rather see D-Jax in for 30 Snaps a game and have him run Deep Routes/Patters on 15-20 of those snaps and take some shots and throw it to him 4-5 times a game and take my chances.. Otherwise, the other 40 snaps a game, he does absolutety nothing for me and his butt is on the sidelines…
    Is he the biggest puss in retuning punts anymore .. Have Steve Smith or DCR return them if D-JAx is always is going to run back-wards or simply fait catch.. Give me 5-10 Yards consistently to help my team all game long rather than 1-2 big returns a Season..

  • Not one of your finer critiques of the game Micah..
    Heremmans may have had a good block on Urlacher, But DE Idonije owned him all game long.. Can we worry about where to rank McCoy versus his counterparts until after the season.. Take that 35 yard TD run and 1 other 18 Yard scamper and he had.. and you are way too easy on Asmo, I don’t care if it’s man to man, zone, Coverage, Tampa 2 or a Deep 3, You never turn your back in coverage to the QB and the ball, you have to know where the ball it so you can make play on it.. Asmo has consistently done a poor job in my opinion in coverage with imporper technique and positioing and just flat out anticiapation.. I stand with this assesment and he will go down as the biggest flop aquisition in this year’s Free-Agency market in the entire NFL.. he looks so lost that i actually feel sorry for him..
    You were much to kind to the Eagles WR DJax/Maclin, is it me or do these players show more energy and excitement when trying to get the ref to call a flag instead of using that energy and actually try to make the catch.. I’ve never seen a NFL WR give up on routes as much as D-JAx does.. If he has to run thru a defense to get to a spot, he just slows up and gives up on the play.. These Eagles Wr seen as a strength by many have actually been the most disappointing part of the team if you ask me.. maybe the holdout/illness’s had d-Jax/Maclin behind schedule, but these players are Pro and have played with Vick enough to know whats going on.. I think they play “scared” and you just can’t play that way in the NFL.. (i’ve stated this 2 years ago and thought they both overcame it a little last season only to revert back to being afriad of contact.. It’s embarrassing to watch and other teams know this, so they are going to take more shots at them knowing that it impacts them and has them only playing at 80% instead of 100% ..
    40 yards on 15 carriers

  • The answer to that is a resounding Hell NO!
    (In reference to DJax being worth that amount of money.)

  • No team in the modern 16 game schedule has won nfc east at 3-5 midway, the eagles are finished for this year, and reid will be fired at the end of the season, his team has quit on him, exhibit “A” last night’s performance

  • All the highly Paid Assistants on AR Staff are under Contracat thru 2012
    (Coaches MM, Mudd,Washburn and Lynne) are some of the highest paid POstion and Assistant coaches in the NFL.. Coach Ar is sigend thru the 2013 Season.. For the umpteenth time, OWner Lurie is not going to fire Reid and pay 6-7 Coaches big Salaries to not Coach,, Reid and his staff have thru next season 2012 to turn it around, then if not, ten heads will roll but not before then…

  • Paulman is right. No changes coming till 2012. And Vick and Reid locked in together.

    If Reid fired or steps down after 2012 season (and I think that’s looks probable at this point), then Vick will be traded or released at that point too.

    If a new coach comes in for the 2013 season, he’s not going to want to start out with a 33 year old inconsistent QB, whose best (and only really) asset (legs) will be fading dramatically.

    The only way Reid is going to stay around is if Vick starts playing like a $100 million QB, and at this point even the most horse blindered (is that a word?) Vick fans out there have to be beginning to realize that’s not going to happen.

    So, I will look at the bright side of things. Its only another year and a half suffering with Vick under centre, and not the 3 I initially thought it would be. Then the Eagles can move forward and start putting together a team with a solid QB. At that point, 4 of the 5 oline will be just approaching their 30s and should be able to put together a solid couple of years.

    There’s a future yet!

  • I think Shady is the 3rd best back in the league right now behind Peterson and Forte. Mostly because those players do not have a QB like Vick and WRs like Jackson and Maclin so they face 8 man fronts a lot more often and still have a little more production. Shady would probably blow their numbers away if Andy would give him the ball more especially since he doesn’t have the defenses like AP or Forte faces. But he’s a beast and the only one on offense right now.

  • BOTH OT’s were abused by the Bears’ DE’s. Julius Peppers pretty much had his way with Pro Bowler Jason Peters, and it seemed like Peters knew he was overmatched.

    Agree with paulman observations on Asomugha. Plus, NONE of the CB’s has any interest in tackling except for the little guy – Hanson.

    As soon as it was clear that the young but huge Bears’ OL was handling the Birds’ front 4 (the end of the 1st Quarter would have been a good point), Castillo should have been blitzing continually. Cutler slips into “frantic” mode pretty readily when he is stressed and makes lots of mistakes.

    I could go on but all in all a pretty lackluster effort all around by the Birds. They have to go 7-1 in the second half of the season to have a reasonable shot at the playoffs. Anyone think they can do it???

    Me neither.

  • You’re correct,
    Gruden is a terrible broadcaster; he contradicted himself numerous times and it was annoying listening to him; it got to the point when he started on one of his r ants, we muted the sound.
    I twas a breath of fresh air when Mike Tirico opened as the 3rd quarter moderator, but then Gruden returned and again …it was “mute time.”

  • Micah I do blame “Bozo the Clown” for being defensive coordinator.

    I worked for a EOD unit in the Army. I would not risk my life or the lives of others trying to defuse a bomb if I was not qualified to do it. I would not perform brain surgery if I was not qualified to do it.

    Juan was not qualified to be Defensive Coordinator, and there was nothing in his resume that should have made him think otherwise.

    Yes I blame the FAT MAN and the OWNER for allowing it to happen.

    Having said that, JUAN should have spent every waking moment of his life studying the defensive scheme he adopted. He should have know it like the back of his hand.

    Andy Reid wanted to do something special. This was his masterpiece. A true chance to show the world and the Eagle fans how much smarter he is then the rest of us.


    As I have said 100 times before, he is Marty Shotinhimer, Don Coreyell. I would not put him in the same sentence as Bud Grant or Buffaloes coach.

    TEAM has to be more important than SELF. Juan saw it as a career move to benifit him. Andy saw it as a chance to glorify himself.

    NO ONE IN THEIR RIGHT MIND ON THE PLANET EARTH thought Juan was the most qualified.


  • Jaws I like….Gruden is terrible — Theisman all over again — every player is the greatest and every play was unbelievable…blah blah blah…give us something we can’t see with our own eyes…he had a serious man-crush for Briggs Monday night

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