Tag:NFC East
Posted on: December 16, 2008 3:05 am

Post-Cleveland, Playoff Hopes Still Alive

Well, at least the Eagles did what they needed to do this week to keep their playoff hopes alive, even if the teams ahead of them didn't. I was hoping that the Falcons would lose quickly so that Philly could grasp control of its own destiny, but the Bucs seemed intent on shooting themselves in the foot repeatedly late in the game yesterday, and allowing the Falcons to eek one out in OT. No matter... now we just need either the Falcons OR the Bucs to lose one of their last 2, which seems doable, especially given Tampa's unimpressive play yesterday without Garcia. Atlanta has the Vikings and Tampa has the Chargers next week, so fingers crossed that they both suck. Update: Apparently Minnesota's Williams-es (no relation) have finally been suspended and thus will not play against the Falcons next week. Damn you league drug policy, stop f-ing with the Eagles' playoff aspirations!

Tonight's game was a pleasant surprise in that the Eagles took care of business early and kept my blood pressure rather low, despite what was nearly a horrid dose of deja vu from last week when Brandon McDonald returned a McNabb interception 98 yards to the Eagles' 7 as time ran out in the first half. I have to credit Westbrook's hustle in chasing McDonald down to slow him up before he got to the end zone, but seriously guys... stop giving me a damn coronary at the close of every 1st half! It's worth noting that the Eagles saw 3 different passers throw an interception in that game, but fortunately I'm not overly concerned with 2 of them. Overall though I was very impressed with McNabb- I know Cleveland's D is god-awful, but McNabb threw with unusual accuracy and spread the ball around, and he has been looking better each week since the Baltimore fiasco. Kevin Kolb on the other hand.... not so much. Future of the team, my ass.

A few other guys who merit a quick mention... thank you Asante Samuel for following your dumbass ball-flip a yard shy of the endzone with some quick hustle to pick it up and solidify your TD. Glad to see that you're marginally less stupid than DeSean Jackson circa week 2.

Stewart Bradley finally became the first Eagles LB this season to get a pick. Sure, Ken Dorsey essentially threw the ball right at him, but I'll take 'em where we can get 'em. The linebackers have been doing a good job elsewhere so the lack of interceptions isn't really an issue. Bradley is also super foxy, but that's neither here nor there.

And back to DeSean Jackson... please stop running backwards on your punt returns. I know this probably worked against mediocre Pac-10 teams, but it's obviously not doing anything for you in the NFL. You're a great player, but I have to imagine that sometime during your time at Berkeley you gained a brain cell or 2, so feel free to show that off anytime now.

Around the NFC East...

Is anyone buying this sudden T.O./Romo/Witten BFF bullshit? 'Cause I'm sure as heck not. T.O. is still a giant bag of douche, and I have no doubt that he's got one more tantrum left in his arsenal before the season is over. Probably after the Cowboys lose to the Ravens next week. In fairness though, I would like to see both the Eagles and Cowboys win next week so that they go into Dallas for a ginormous week 17 showdown. Then T.O. can throw a tantrum.

I recently heard some mild speculation that Eli Manning could take the 3rd QB spot in the NFC for this year's Pro Bowl. I realize this is still early and hopefully inaccurate, but I still nearly pissed myself at the thought. I know that when a team does well they tend to send a lot of players to Hawaii (e.g. the Eagles in 04-05), but I'm not sure that I'm prepared to live in a world in which Eli is both a Super Bowl MVP and a Pro Bowler. Especially when there are about 5 QB's in the NFC with better numbers.

And then there are the Redskins... remember not all that long ago when I said they were the new team to beat in the NFC? Yikes. This team is falling apart faster than TO after a trip to the pharmacist. OK, nothing short of the speed of light is that fast, but you get the idea... they've lost 5 of their last 6. Nevertheless, they could very well still play spoiler to the Eagles' playoff dreams next week, so that game is hardly in the bag.

Let's hope that the Eagles can make this the 3rd straight year that they finish the last 3 weeks of the regular season undefeated... and then get a smidge of help from the NFC South.

Category: NFL
Posted on: December 16, 2008 2:57 am

This & That, Week 3

Originally posted 9/23/08. When I wasn't agonizing over Eagles injuries and admiring the defensive handiwork, I noticed a few other things around the league and the NFC East in particular.

Let's start with the recent obsession with the
NFC East. Holy God, every football site I go to is giddily pissing themselves over how strong the NFC East is. To be fair, the division certainly makes an argument for being the juggernaut of the NFL thus far. Dallas is clearly the best team in the NFL, the Eagles' only loss was a close one to the 'Boys and they then dismissed the AFC's then-best, the Steelers. The Giants are the defending champs and are undefeated so far, and the 'Skins are looking stronger each week with an impressive Jason Campbell at the helm. And the 4 teams are 8-0 in games outside the division.

I'm just not totally sold on the Giants yet. This certainly stems out of my dislike for the G-men, and the painful offseason I had to live through with Chris gloating about his semi-crappy Giants team that played their 4 best games all season at just the right time. Even if they had their entire team back, I would see them going 10-6 at best, but the Strahan retirement and the loss of Osi Umenyiora take away - or at least significantly reduce - their biggest weapon, that mighty pass rush. The Giants beat the Redskins in week 1, who admittedly are a decent team, but played terribly in week 1. Next they beat the Rams, who, let's not forget, were only down by 7 points (albeit briefly) early in the 4th quarter. The Giants didn't dominate that game until the very end, and this was against arguably the worst team in the league. Finally, last week, they needed OT to finish off the Bengals. Yes, a win is a win, but in predicting future succees, I just don't see it for the Giants this season. But then again, I said that about them last season, so what do I know...

I understand all the hype for this division though, especially considering how other former powerhouse teams around the league are tanking by the second. What irritates me to no end is all of the fans of NFC East teams on message boards and blogs that LOVE to talk about how great this division is, like they take personal pride in it. Why?! I could care less how strong the rest of the division is, and I'd actually prefer that they all sucked. I don't want these teams beating up on each other 6 games a year; I'd rather have the easiest road possible to the playoffs. The shittier the division competition, the better. I mean, it's an NFL division, they don't need to earn respect. It's not like a college team playing in, say, the WAC or MAC or other semi-obscure conference, who might want to support one another to gain legitimacy. I had no problem with the good ol' days when the rest of the NFC East was miserably awful and provided us with 6 easy wins a year. And also... I hate the Giants and especially the Cowboys, and I don't care for the 'Skins. I'd like to see them all go 5-11 if I had my way. I don't want to see them glorified. What's with all this intra-divisional love all of a sudden? Pardon my French, but... suck it, NFC East.

I'd like to issue a special thank you to
Ronnie Brown for making my fantasy team so awesome this week, as I was able to steamroll over Taz despite losing my top pick, Westbrook. And to think, Ronnie, I almost benched you for DeAngelo Williams! It was also nice watching you manhandle the Patriots D. Now what am I gonna do this week for your bye?

It was good to see the
Chargers finally get a much-deserverd win this week after the Ed "I can't control my over-muscled jaw from inadvertently blowing my whistle" Hochuli situation. I don't see that game (or the ugly last-second loss to Carolina in week 1) keeping them out of the playoffs or the top of the division, but it was a very frustrating way to start their season. They may not yet be in the discussion for who the cream of the AFC is, but given the way the AFC teams have been stumbling each week, it's only a matter of time. They're a good team that got off to a slow start, but they'll be a big threat throughout the season.
Category: NFL
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