• July 3, 2022

Vince Young Leads The Drive Of The Season

Vince Young was about what everyone expected him to be against the Giants.  There were some good flashes, bad flashes, and that one game-winning touchdown drive that has eluded the Eagles all season long.  Last year, it was a refreshing change of pace as Michael Vick led the Eagles on game-winning scoring drives late in the 4th quarter more than Donovan McNabb ever did in the previous five years at least.  This year, Vick has led zero such drives.  The Eagles gave up the lead in the 4th quarter, yet again, but a drive that had Vince Young complete seven passes for 67 yards that ended in a Riley Cooper touchdown.  The defense was able to get Eli Manning to fumble the game away for the Giants to hold on for a 17-10 victory in the Meadowlands.

After the Giants tied the game 10-10 early in the 4th quarter, all hope seemed lost for an Eagles win.  The Eagles had given up five 4th quarter leads this year leading to losses, and many of us just thought the Eagles would at least wait to lead us to heartbreak late in the 4th quarter.  It was exactly the opposite, as Vince Young quarterbacked a drive that rivals John Elway’s drive in the 1987 AFC Championship Game.  OK, that’s pushing it maybe a little.  OK, maybe a lot.  But Vince Young, with the help of his offense that included Riley Cooper, Ronnie Brown, and Jason Avant making big plays, orchestrated the game-winning drive with poise and great leadership, something he has shown before while playing for the University of Texas and in the NFL with the Tennessee Titans.

Brent Celek was not as visible as he’s been in recent weeks making big plays, but he still caught six passes for 60 yards, with a couple of big catches on scoring drives.  He also blocked more this game than he has in the past few weeks, and it gave Vince Young plenty of time in the pocket.  If Michael Vick was back there, the chances he would run around and put himself in a position to get hurt would be a lot bigger than what happened last night with Young.  Young looked calm and poised in the pocket as the offensive line stepped up and gave him every reason to feel comfortable.  Young looked to spread the ball around to everyone, even targeting DeSean Jackson more than any other game this season, it seemed.  DeSean made a big catch for 50 yards with the Eagles deep in their own end of the field, but it was negated by a taunting penalty when DeSean flipped the ball to the sidelines at one of the Giants’ coaches.  He then didn’t return the next Giants punt, but he showed why he can be such a valuable commodity for the Eagles during a 51-yard punt return that would’ve went for a touchdown if he didn’t step out of bounds at the 14-yard line.  Ultimately, it’s plays like the catch and taunt that have soured Jackson to many fans and maybe even some of the coaches on the team.  It didn’t cost them the game, but that’s not really the point.  It’s clear DeSean still hasn’t grown up fully yet, and that may spell the end of his tenure in Philadelphia after this season.

The running game wasn’t as explosive as it’s been in recent weeks, but LeSean McCoy broke a big run for 60 yards to seal the game as Vince Young took a few knees to run the clock out.  McCoy wasn’t the go-to weapon that he’s been all season in this game, and it’s probably due to Andy Reid’s gameplan to limit McCoy’s touches because the Giants were going to focus on McCoy and his explosive playmaking ability.  It looked like the run was not working, and as expected, Reid went pass-happy, even with Vince Young behind center.  It’s clear that whoever Reid plugs in at quarterback, he’s going to ask them to pass, pass, pass.  I firmly believe that if Mike Kafka or Michael Vick were the starter, the game plan would’ve been exactly the same.  This is why Andy Reid has lost this fan base.  He does not game plan based on his roster.  He does it based on what he wants.  And maybe he expects his players to step in and do exactly what he wants, and that’s fair to expect when you’re a head football coach in the NFL.  However, it’s clear a lot of these players cannot just step in a fill a void without struggles.  But the Eagles offense did it last night.

It almost makes me want to see Vince Young start next week.  Or at least play the 4th quarter.

The defense was OK, but the Giants offense was pretty bad.  Dropped passes, Eli’s terrible throws, and their rushing game was nonexistant.  The Giants definitely helped the Eagles out last night, but a win is a win is a win is a win.  Or something like that.  Next is the Patriots.  A win against them and a Giants loss against the Saints and a Cowboys loss against the Dolphins (pipe dream) would pull the Eagles to one game out of the divisional lead with tiebreakers over both the Giants and Cowboys.  It’ll be an interesting week to say the least.

Nick Camillo Piccone

Philly sports fan that grew up as a four for four guy. Love the sports biz. Follow me on Twitter @nickcpiccone

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  • Did you just write that the Eagle’s “Defense was OK”…
    What game were you watching Nick, this was the Eagles best overall performance on the Defensive side of the ball the team has played in a long time…many of Eli’s throws were bad and off-target since he rarely had time or the space to step up in the pocket and when he did the Giant receivers dropped them… …

  • The Giants offense was terrible. Eli wasn’t under pressure THAT much. The defense definitely played better, they even played well. Therefore, they were OK. It wasn’t a dominating performance by any means. Eli made a ton of mistakes that the Eagles didn’t force. He threw an interception to the only Eagle in the area. That’s not great defense, that’s luck. And the Giants’ receivers dropping passes doesn’t mean the defense had anything to do with it.

    The defense’s best game was against Dallas. That game Sunday night was an ugly offensive game. Don’t overrate this defense based on that terrible Giants performance.

  • I think you are missing the mark Nick..
    The Cowboys gave up as a team and packed it in after that 1st Quarter versus the Eagles which was pretty obvious to most observors. This Eagles Defensive performance versus the Giants was more impressive in my opinion for they have to play hard an entire 60 minutes and outside of 3-4 plays all game, did an excellent job across the board… Give some credit where credit is due Nick and I am in no way overrated this EAgle Defense, all I am saying was that they played pretty damn good and not jusk “OK” as you indicated…

  • If you saw or heard some interviews from Giants players after the game, they admitted they weren’t “up” for this game and they got “punched in the mouth and didn’t do anything about it.” Sounds like they gave up, too. The defense wasn’t terrible Sunday night. But they weren’t great.

  • I did not see/hear any Giant players interview, but that doesn’t surprise me to hear (Most teams players when they lose, say the old, we didn’t have the energy,we were sloppy,etc,etc) The Giants were not on all cylandirs offensively (nicks s1st game back was out of sorts, their TE dropped 2-3 wide open passes which really hurt the Giants offense, but I do believe a lot had to do with how te Eagles Defense was playing and to be honest, I rather start hearing about excuses on “why we lost” from the other teams for a while now since we’ve heard it enough already from the Eagles already this season.. Giving up 10 Points on the Road in game to keep you alive in the playoff chase and on the road is impressive no matter what in my book..

  • I will concede your point that it is impressive that the defense held them to 10 points on the road, especially after three Vince Young interceptions.

  • Now you can have a nice Thanksgiving Holiday weekend … Nick…ha ha …

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