Sunday, November 2, 2008

Gameday Thoughts

You have a healthy Eagles team on a 2-game winning streak playing at Seattle against a banged up, struggling Seahawks team. The Eagles have to win this game. Forget about what it means in the standings. I'm talking about the Eagles needing to beat teams that they are clearly better than.

The Eagles got off to a slow start. They already blew their opportunity to have a down game. They need to win in Seattle. Even more than that, they really need to play well and win comfortably. This game should be decided by the late 3rd or early 4th quarter.

That may seem like an unfair standard to hold the Eagles to. The standard mantra is "a win is a win". There's a lot of truth in that, but this Eagles team has to show us something. They have to put together a complete game. We haven't seen that since the season opener. And clearly that result had an awful lot to do with the dysfuctional Rams.

I'm not saying the Eagles need to dominated and win by 28 points or something crazy like that. They need to get up by at least a couple of TDs and retain control of the game. Last week they had a 20-7 lead in the 4th Qtr, but then let the Falcons get right back in it. That can't happen this week.

The 2-game winning streak has built a little bit of momentum for the Eagles. Now they have to build off that. Winning isn't enough. They have to win the right way and build some confidence that they are a good team. Put teams away when you have the advantage.

A bit part of putting teams away is scoring TDs in the Red Zone. The Eagles failed to do that last week when up 17-7 and near the goal line. Had they punched it in the lead would have been 24-7, a 3-possession advantage. That would have meant "game over". 20-7 gave the Falcons hope and they made it a game. I was very nervous when they cut the lead to 20-14. I was off the charts nervous when they stuffed us and we punted the ball back to them. The ball bounced our way, so to speak, and we won 27-14.

I don't know what to say about the Red Zone issues. I hope we continue to feed the ball to Westy when we get down there. He lacks the size and power to push the pile, but he has the ability to go over the top, find a small crevice up the middle, or possibly bounce a run outside. We need the OL to win the battle up front more than they have in the RZ. Keep running the ball and I think good things will happen.


* The last two games vs SEA involved our backup QBs facing Matt Hasselbeck. This time their backup faces Donovan McNabb.

* Watch Trent Cole vs Walter Jones. That matchup will be frustrating to Eagles fans because Jones is likely to win most of the time, but we know Trent is going to give it everything he's got.

* Let's see if Brod Bunkley can have another strong game. He's played quite well the last 5 quarters. Don't stop, big man. Keep it going.

* We ran for 192 yards last week. Don't stop, Big Red. Keep it going.

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