Zone Read: Eagles-Vikings, the Day After

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Minnesota Vikings

Going into Sunday’s game against the Vikings, the Eagles appeared to be peaking at the right time.

They had won five straight, were in the driver’s seat in the NFC East and looked like a team capable of making some noise in the postseason.




Less than 24 hours after kickoff, the outlook has changed a bit. The 48-30 loss to the Vikings was either just one bad letdown game or a true reality check of where this team is.

Keeping that in mind, let's take a point-by-point look at some of the issues that surfaced in Minnesota, debuting The Kapadia Concern Scale. Each issue is given a ranking from 1 to 10.

1 = No big deal. It was just an isolated issue.
10 = If anything's going to ruin the season, this might be it.

The leaky defense
Concern level: 9

Entering Sunday's game, the Eagles had limited opponents to 21 points or fewer in nine straight. But Matt Cassel lit them up with a 382-yard performance. To put his numbers into perspective, consider this: Through the first 13 weeks of the season, there had only been three instances where a QB had completed at least 74 percent of his passes and averaged 10.9 YPA.

Philip Rivers did it against the Jaguars; Aaron Rodgers against the Redskins; and Nick Foles against the Raiders. Cassel became the fourth, completing 74.3 percent of his passes (26-for-35) while averaging 10.9 YPA (Alex Smith accomplished the feat yesterday as well).

The coaches have pointed out all year that the Eagles' defense doesn't give up big plays. But as we've clarified in this space, that depends how you define the term. The Birds have now allowed 55 pass plays of 20+ yards, tied for fifth-most in the league.

And remember, this was an offense that entered the game ranked 22nd (per Football Outsiders) and was playing with its third-string running back.

Coming up in the next two weeks are offenses in the Bears and Cowboys that have a lot more talent. I don't think the Eagles are as bad as they showed vs. Minnesota, but the issues on defense are atop the list of concerns going forward.

Chip Kelly's game management
Concern level: 6

A couple issues in this one. With 4:26 left, Foles found Jason Avant for a 16-yard touchdown. That put the Eagles down 13. Kicking the PAT would have put them down 12, meaning they'd still need two touchdowns to win. Going for two would have potentially put them down 11, allowing for the possibility of tying the game with a TD (plus two-point conversion) and a field goal.

After Avant scored, the Eagles sent out the kicking team first before wasting a timeout and going for two. Trying to stage a comeback at that point in the game required all the resources at their disposal. Using the timeout ended up not mattering, but it could have. The coaching staff has to know immediately in that situation that it's going for two.

It's also worth noting that on that very same drive, the Eagles had a delay of game penalty in the red zone.

The other issue was the turnover on downs inside their own 25. The Eagles trailed 24-9 with 6:27 left in the third. After failing to pick up a 3rd-and-1, Kelly went for it, and McCoy was stopped on fourth down. Kelly challenged the call, but the ruling on the field was upheld.

I know I'll be in the minority here, but I don't have an issue with him going for it. I thought Kelly's explanation made sense. And this is part of the reason why the Eagles hired him. He doesn't always go by the book and is a risk-taker.

But watching the replay, I think the Eagles might have been able to avoid the fourth-down call altogether. On third down, McCoy ran a toss to the right and appeared to have picked up the first down. I wonder if a challenge there would have benefited the Eagles.

Overall, there have been some lingering game management issues for much of the year. I don't think the two examples above cost the Eagles the victory. But in a closer game in the next two weeks, similar issues could be devastating.

Chip Kelly's game-plan/play-calling
Concern level: 3

There will be an uproar on this day-after about how LeSean McCoy only got eight carries. I completely get that and think it's a worthy discussion point.

Clearly, Kelly felt like the offense could expose the Vikings' secondary, and he indicated he wasn't thrilled with how the line was faring against the Vikings' front. But I'm not sure I buy that. McCoy was averaging 4.8 yards-per-carry and has shown in the past that he can get stronger as the game goes on. So yes, Kelly probably abandoned the run too early.

Having said that, Foles ended up throwing for 428 yards, and the team still scored 30 points. For that reason, I'm not willing to say this is a major issue. Kelly has put together good gameplans all season long. McCoy has more carries (269) than any other back in the league. Kelly is going to use him plenty in the next two games. Should McCoy have gotten more work against Minnesota? Sure. But this seems more like an isolated incident than a trend to me.

Nick Foles' uneven performance
Concern level: 4

The final numbers were great: 30-for-48 for 428 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. But anyone watching could see that there were inconsistencies in Foles' performance - whether that meant missing throws, holding on to the ball or making questionable decisions.

Given that he started the season on a 19 TD/0 INT tear, some regression was expected. And it's not like Foles has fallen off a cliff. He made several plays as the Eagles tried to stage a comeback.

But the margin of error in the next two games figures to be slim, especially if the defense continues to falter. Foles is still showing a strong grasp of the offense. He just needs to work on the consistency aspect throughout the course of the game.

The Bears are mediocre defensively, and the Cowboys are horrendous. There's no reason he shouldn't be able to pick both teams apart in the final two games.

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  • Kraxx

    Eagles: pass pass pass pass lose.
    Cowboys: pass pass pass pass lose.

    One of our goals should always be to not be like the cowboys in coaching. Please.

    • Adam

      Big difference is the Cowboys were passing with the lead, while average 7.5 YPC on top of that. I’m hoping Chip wouldn’t have done that.

  • theycallmerob

    I know I’ll be in the minority here, but I don’t have an issue with him going for it.

    Liking the new Kapadia Koncern Skale.
    I’m in that minority with you. The red zone series, with the mess after the TD, bothered me more than going for it on the 4th/1. Defense had to get off the field. Comeback needed a jump start. Players had to be challenged, and they failed to get half a yard against a basic front. Pathetic.

    Also loved your take on Henery. Don’t get me wrong, he needs competition and probably an upgrade, but the coverage units caused Fipp and Kelly’s fear. Simply bare cupboards on the team, and the DL overachieving and Cole/Allen/Ryans playing at some of their best (cole considering the transition) have carried the others on defense. Guys like Roc, Coleman, and Chung don’t belong on ST let alone a roster.

    Lastly, one of the more upsetting parts was seeing the taunting crap. Sconces and Roc should have to make all the smoothies this week (Fletch has to serve them but gets a pass for lack of penalty). Sconces in particular, because he’s a starter and the next play after opening his mouth he got beat cleanly for a TD.
    I get the spiel he puts on that we all eat up, but the guy is a bum. Get him off our turf. Tired of watching his sorry a$$ underperform at the worst times.

    • Richard Colton

      I’m going to line-item veto your punishment and put Fletch on smoothie detail too. He EASILY could have been called for unsportsmanlike conduct on that shove. IMO – this was the worst the DBs have looked all year.

      • aub32

        Chargers?

        • Richard Colton

          yeah. that was bad too. Rivers is better than Cassel though, and the Chargers have better receivers, so that factors in too. Not to mention the D had been playing better.

          God, this feels like arguing over what’s better – death by firing squad or hanging.

          • cliff henny

            if were talking about chung, cant we just shoot him right as the noose tightens? why choose?

          • Richard Colton

            I needed that visual today Cliff. Thanks.

          • GEAGLE

            Yeah I feel better too now

          • jesse

            In all honesty our D has been playing better yes but was it playing better? still were giving up tons of yards just getting opportunistic turnovers and holding them to short FG’s this week only one TO and let them in the endzone

          • GEAGLE

            I Dunno, sergeant Nicholas Brody made death by hanging look kind of peaceful last night

        • jesse

          honestly looked worse as in the charger game they were allowing the short underneath as not to get burned on big play this game they were routinely beaten deep but how can you blame them they are who they are all our DB’s are on the slow side so cant cover the go routes and safety’s are just as slow and tend to take poor angles to the ball/receivers hoping we can pick up Byrd in FA next year and a top CB via draft or FA along with a beast rush OLB . those 3 will bring our D to the next level

    • Bird of Prey

      Totally agree, but how’s this for a question; One foot to go, 6’5 QB, Polk on the bench and you run it out of the Shotgun with only one back? The formation was all wrong(again) for the situation. Last week they went under center in the I, and were successful in short yardage. That’s what they’ve got to work on in the coaching side of things.

      • jesse

        i agree if going for that half a yard why not go in Iform. with Casey as your FB?

  • theycallmerob

    But this seemed like the first time all year the Eagles have come out flat.

    Did you really think that Sheil? I get execution errors, but didn’t MIN just expose some of our defensive issues that have been lurking all year?
    Of everything that went wrong yesterday, I don’t think flat affect was a culprit. The Eagles simply were outplayed, overmatched, and outwitted.

    • Adam

      Eh, I’m not really sure it was that grim. I think they were a very beatable team but I think the defense just didn’t show up to play. Missed tackles were plentiful. The pass rush didn’t get it’s usual push but credit to Cassel for his quick releases. That bogus PI call on Fletcher had huge repercussions. The team showed up expecting a heavy does of the run from a team playing with a back up QB. We looked past the Vikings and lost because of it.

      • theycallmerob

        Still not quite on board with the whole looking past notion, but I guess we’ll agree to disagree.
        In terms of blame, I’d pry go
        -65% defense (about 2/3). bad pass rush, bad tackling, bad job getting off on 3rd down (MIN went 8 of 13 and had 11 rushing 1st downs). Part of this is the play of Cassel, but a good bit of his play was due to our DBs
        -20% offense (not their greatest game, missed opportunities like the Coop ball and 4th/1)
        -5% coaching
        -10% mental mistakes and intangibles (the penalties and specifically taunting, plus the killer boykin injury)

        • Adam

          Basically what i mean is I don’t think being outplayed and outwitted is mutually exclusive to coming out flat. If you’re not prepped mentally you’re going to get outplayed and outwitted, especially if you’re underestimating the opponent.

          The defense comes up with 1 or 2 stops in the first half, our offense keeps it tight. We didn’t force a punt till the third quarter. We can then run the ball. That opens up the pass a little more.

          Special teams (or lack of trust in) needs to be a big percentage of that blame, too.

          • GEAGLE

            I think when you have tackled really well the past two months, didn’t have breakdowns where safeties let WR get behind them…and you play worse than you have in two months against the least talent you have faced…if that’s not the definition of let down, looking past your opponent, being too overconfident, I don’t know a better example of it then yesterday….

            This defense needs to have Nate and Wolff on the field, playing aggressive while doing their job of us to stand a chance. We dont have the most talent across the board. The deal was, if Guys allow the coaches to coach em up, do their job and be accountable to the team mate playing next to them, we can play good defense that we can win with…deviate from that, and it starts to look like 2012 Swiss cheese defense again….

            I really wanted to run the table, but they clearly still had some lessons to learn. with cowboys losing, I don’t think it’s the worst thing in the world for this team to be knocked down a Peg and get a reality check before getting to the playoffs, especially since I believe we had the locker room leaders and coaches that will keep us from imploding

          • jesse

            yeah i dont care if you have a hybrid of Djax ,,Hester,,Metcalf,Brian Mitchell.. you still don’t give them damn near half the field every time you kick them the ball

  • Broadcasting Wisdom

    Tip your hat to Cassell channeling his New England Patriots success. The guy threw some great balls, made smart decisions, and avoided a few sacks that would have changed the momentum. I thought our line did a phenomenal job against the run – Foles could pick up 51 yards on 30 carries by QB sneaking every play, but obviously to the detriment of our pass rush (that’s the 2-gap trade-off). Foles throws that bomb to Cooper one yard further and into the field of play, and he would have gotten two feet in for a touchdown and changed the whole game. Kendricks missing that pass break up on 3rd and 14 also switched the momentum.

    Look at those two plays – if they go the other way, we probably win the game. In other words, my panic meter is at about a 5 on a 1 to 10 scale, and all 5 of those relate to the pass defense. We can’t get a fast rush on with the 2-gap scheme, and without Earl Wolff they will continue to target slow-footed Chung/Coleman/Anderson.

  • nicksaenz1

    Brad Smith 100% deserves the snaps as the 4th receiver. Maehl and DJ2 should never see the field again unless we’re resting starters.

    • Adam

      He should be KR/PR as well.

      • nicksaenz1

        Agreed.

      • jesse

        can he play DB?????

    • Andy124

      I’m thinking he should be seeing some snaps as the #3.

      • nicksaenz1

        Can’t argue that. Avant’s hands are great but leaves a lot to be desired with speed and breaking a play.

    • aub32

      Agreed. He should also take over as the kick returner. Next year’s lineup should be DJ, Coop, Mac, and Smith. I like that group of receivers.

      • Dominik

        I’d pick a WR in the draft if someone Kelly likes falls to us. But WR would be the only Offensive player I pick this year. 2015 comes the O-Line, then.

        But I like Smith, too. Solid #4, good #5 WR.

  • Kev_H

    I don’t have a problem with going for it on 4th and 1 with the exception time expiring in field goal range. What I take from this game is the importance to the Eagles’ defense of getting ahead and playing with a lead.
    I was actually hoping that a hobbled AP was cleared to play. I think the Eagles would have been better prepared and the Vikings would have been more conservative. I was a little worried about Cassel against our secondary because he’s a good QB.

  • GEAGLE

    Before I eat this article, I want to give my thoughts after re watching the tape before my oppinion gets skewed by those of others..now before you read me tear this organization a new one, understand that yesterday wasn’t that big of a deal to me, I would have loved to run the table, but I do understand that yesterday was the cost of doing business in the NFL with a young team starting from your coach. All the way down. With that said, I gotta call it how I see it and yesterday was horrible. Basically what we saw was a coach who was coaching scared, and players who were overconfident…weird dynamic.

    Under this post I will get into the specifics

    • GEAGLE

      Why are our special teams players collecting a paycheck today?
      ..
      ST was such a major component of who made this roster, yet I watched a coach send a horrible message to his young team. You can’t basically tell your cover guys, that you won’t even give them 1 stinking chance to cover a rookie return man, putting your defense in a horrible position the entire game.
      ..
      “Respect all, fear no one”-Chip…well yesterday you were scared to death of a rookie return man and it was digesting to see. I will tear the defense a new one, but not before We talk about what a bad position we placed them in all game. From ST to going for it on 4th in your own redzone.
      ..
      Last week I talked about the importance of not allowing ST to junk up a letdown game, but conceding ST completely and putting that pressure on the defense was NOT what I had in mind! We spent a 4th round pick on a kicker who can’t kick it out the back of the ENDZONE in a dome? Really?
      ….
      I would honestly have rather seen Cordarelle return two for TDs yesterday, and ATleast make them go the length of the field on the other 3 kicks…it just sends a horrible message to your players that you don’t trust them to give them one chance to cover a rookie…
      ….
      As bad, as yesterday was….I’m willing to bet it was a major learning experience for everyone starting with Chip

      • GEAGLE

        Now the offense. Up and down game by our young gunslinger, but he played well enough to win an NFL game…

        Shady got 8 carries, two of which were the short yard runs on 3rd and 4th…that’s unacceptable on so many levels…early we tried to run the inside zones we had so much success with against the Lions but the Vikings were well prepared. What they did was bring a safety up, and immediately they crashed the ILBs into the a game. What that did was break up our double teams. Last week our linemen were able to double team the DTs which was very successful, but when the Viking LBs crashed the A gaps so quickly it forced our linemen to peel off the double teams and take care of the LBs…and our interior linemen weren’t moving the DTs without help….Instead of ADJUSTING, we just decided to abandon the run game…this leads me to believe that Chip had no intention of running the ball yesterday. he looked at what was supposed to be a dreadful secondary, and to me it looked like he was going to show the world how great his team was and try to coach a BCS type 50pt ass whooping….I HATED the coaching yesterday! HATED IT! The entire first half, we just swung for the fences, instead of taking what the defense gave us, try to get into a Rythem and it blew up in our face…

        Lane and JP looked worse then they have in about a month and a half. Horrible game from both.

        yesterday, Dialed in Desean had a momentary breakdown and that can’t happen when he is a leader on this team. Re watching the game, the first thing I thought was thank god we don’t have a rookie high draft pick at WR who was looking up to Desean yesterday…basically Desean was pouting in the middle of a play, because he was open and FOles was late with the ball. Instead of trying to break up that interception, he was busy pouting. Instead of trying to chase down the defender who intercepted it, he was busy pouting which Forced Cooper to have to run across the entire field to make the tackle..to make matters worse, he clearly flipped out on a coach when he went to the sideline who I assume said something about the lack of effort and pouting displayed on that play…one of our leaders can’t be doing that In December and it’s a shame because it casted a dark cloud on one of the he best games he has ever played as an Eagle..

        One positive when watching the film was Ertz. The spectacular one handed, back of the ENDZONE was obvious, but the kid is really starting to flash skills seen from the GREAT TEs…His progression these past two months has been very exciting. This kid has a very real chance at becoming GREAT!

        • GEAGLE

          Now, to my beloved defense…SMH

          While Chip was coaching scared, they clearly were way too overconfident. They came into this game feeling themselves way too much and clearly needed to get knocked down a Peg. Because Dallas lost, I think yesterday’s loss can be good for us, but it’s up to the coaches and players to turn yesterday into a valuable loss! instead of acting like the cowboys and imploding because of the loss..

          When players were getting onto the Bus, Derrick Gunn said to an Eagles defender “man, I never thought that team would be able to put up 48 points on you guys”
          ..
          The Eagles defender replied “Neither did we, and that was exactly the problem”
          ….
          Now it’s easy to look at that game and blame the CBs…all 3, including Boykin who we only praise, played one of, if not the worst games of their season, but I know what they can do when everyone is doing their job..As bad as yesterday was, I got way bigger fish to fry then our CBs,,,our safeties were pathetic! and I don’t know a better word to describe how they played yesterday then pathetic….Few things bother me MORE is when a safety has over the top responsibility double teaming a WR, seeing the WR get behind the safety is one of the most infuriating things that I can see during a game…Safeties run a 4.4…there is NO excuse to ever see a WR running behind your safety when he has over the top responsibility…
          ..
          We score two TDs in 3 minutes, close the gap to 5 points, Chip calls another ridiculous kick off…it’s 3rd and long, and our defense has a chance to hold them to a FG which would only put us down 8. We are in simple Man under coverage, and one of our safeties blows the 15th missed tackle, which ended up leading to a TD…..you can’t ask your CBs to get up on their man instead of giving the WR a big cushion when their safety help is constantly blowing open tackles, and when they can’t count on safety double team help not allowing the WR to get behind them…Cary is feisty DOG. he overcomes not having shutdown ability by battling WRs early in the route disrupting the timing. That’s how he always played…when you see a dog like him give such a big cushion to his man, that just SCREAMS not trusting his safety help….there are very few CBs in the NFL, that can just shutdown their man all game, with no help regardless of how the other members of the secondary play..IF YOUR SECONDARY isn’t in complete unicen, if CBs can’t trust the safeties to do their job and provide the neccessary support your CBs will rarely stand a chance at this level.

          If you look at yesterday’s game and think CB is close to as big of a need as safety, then you are sorely mistaken. Brad and Cary will be the eagles CBs the next few years. They won’t be the strength of your defense, but you can go to war with them if you are getting pressure on QBs and they are given consistent,quality safety support

          Trent Cole got completely OWNED by Loadholdt. If the OLB opposite of the Jack isn’t getting sacks! he better be so disruptive that the attention he gets is opening things up for the rest of the rushers to get the sack. You will NEVER take the next step as a 3-4 defense, until you get a young disruptive, pass rushing force opposite of Barwin…Once we get a player that commands serious attention, and has the ability to beat a double team….this is a high quality front 7 we have in place that isn’t even close to playing it’s best ball yet..Cox,Thornton,Mykal,Curry,Logan these guys aren’t done growingl we haven’t come close seeing their best ball. If you get that OLB pass rush force, we will have a scary front 7 when our puppies grow up…

          If you add two quality playmaking Talents at Safety and OLB, our CBs will look drastically better and be good enough for a few years…if you break the bank open for a CB like Verner from the titans. You STILL have to upgrade OLB and Safety…so you might as well dump serious assets into getting serious Talents at those positions who will allow us to not hav to dump serious assets into improving our CBs..

          • jesse

            trent may have lacked a good rush but played the run outstanding dropped the rb for a loss at least twice which is as good as a sack

        • aub32

          I think you are being a bit harsh on DeSean. The guy was open much more than just that one play. Also think about how much that game meant. We are much more level headed today because we know the Cowboys lost. At the time don’t you think that the Eagles thought that there is no way the Cowboys lose and saw the division lead slipping away. Many players blow up on coaches. We saw Brady do this not too long ago. The fact he is so passionate is what makes him fit to be a leader on this team.

          • GEAGLE

            Harsh on Desean? Was open more then one play? He had 11 catches for two hundred yards…He GOT HIS, and is supposed to be a LEADER on this team…there is NO excuse for quitting on a play because you are busy pouting, throwing your arms up showing up your young QB who is learning on the job, and then snapping on your WR coach for trying to get better out of you on the sideline…yesterday was one of the very best games I have seen him play as an Eagle, but that doesn’t excuse that play….THATS what happened, I’m not sure what’s harsh about it….It’s NOT acceptable….and it’s not just Desean. Roc,Cary and bunch of other players yesterday didn’t have their emotions in check! and NOTHING good comes from it

          • aub32

            Do you consider Brady the leader of the Pats? Of course you do. Who wouldn’t. Did you happen to watch Brady early this year? He was chewing the crap out of his young guys. He did the same to the old OC. Have you ever heard a Rodgers PC? He rips young guys constantly. It’s called holding guys accountable. That’s something that has been missing from this team. Sorry that your favorite player got yelled at for having a bad day and throwing a bad INT.

      • jesse

        why can’t i hit the up button 10 more times???

    • jabostick

      Re: overconfident players – I’ve felt this for a long time with this team (stretching back to the “Dream Team fiasco) that they’re not good with accolades. It feels like they believe their own hype a bit. I think humility does this team a lot of good. During that win streak, a lot of talk was about opponents, and bad opposing QB’s, a D that was still living off it’s rep from earlier in the season, etc

      This team needs to be in ‘prove it’ mode the rest of the way

      • GEAGLE

        I agree…but it’s part of the natural progression of a young team….this is a brand new team, and while I would love to just skip 10 phases and just go win a Super Bowl, that’s probably not likely…

        We grew out of being a bad team under Andy….but part of taking that next step is learning to play up to par when you are start being expected to win..it usually takes time, it usually takes a lesson or two like yesterday…so while I would have loved to be able to skip this phase, yesterday clearly shows that we aren’t their yet, and that’s ok…we probably weren’t supposed to get this far this year…as long as you have the coaches and leaders to grow from yesterday, yesterday can be valuable to our future….prior to yesterday, Chip had done a fantastic job of keeping our players grounded and focused…hopefully yesterday was a step back to take two steps forward…hopefully!!!

    • cliff henny

      silver lining is the holes we knew this team had, and were being covered by good coaching were exposed. hpefully talk of resigning nate allen is done. this roster was built to have major turnover this spring, kelly is playing his style with 1 hand tied behind his back.

      • aub32

        I thought most the talk about resigning Allen was as a backup or a spot filler until Wolff was ready. I am not opposed to that.

        • cliff henny

          hear 2 ways, 1st, that davis has him playing at reasonable level, so could be functional starter…i dont see it. 2nd, backup, but a, not a special teamer and b, he will cost good money, chung makes 3m for heaven sakes. i want him, avant, chung, casey, benn, celek and avant all gone, get me cash and get kelly his player. know celek and avant wont be popolar opinion, but 4m for blocking TE is insane, 4m for slow 3rd no RAC slot wr has to be upgraded. kelly may like celek now, but money is spent, see how he feels when reloading cap/team.
          .
          tell you the guy i’m really am over-acting to today, Peters. you get 10m, you dont get bad games. achilles new scheme, at some point 10m is 10m.

          • Adam

            Woah man, cool your jets. Every player, regardless of salary, has bad games. What is he supposed to do, give the money back every time he gives up a sack? He signed his contract before his injury and other than yesterday he’s been playing well.

          • cliff henny

            i like peters, but he isnt playing at 10m level. sal cap, so money counts. i’ve been mostly for extending and getting him little more cap friendly. but is 2nd time he’s gone against above average d-end and been worked, hali had his way.

          • nicksaenz1

            Jared Allen isn’t exactly average.

          • cliff henny

            10m, neither is peters. or at least being paid not to be. also, did write above average.

          • Adam

            Unless players get their contracts renegotiated every week this isn’t the way you look at things. He was paid that 10m pre injury. Eagles didn’t have a choice but to pay him that this year. He won’t be making 10m next season. He can’t just magically get better because his contract number is high. It is what it is, and unless you want to cut him mid season to make a point we kinda have to deal with it.

          • GEAGLE

            Yup…that’s just not the way coaches and front office people, look at things

          • nicksaenz1

            Missed the above. I agree he’s had some struggles against Hali and Allen and I get he’s a $10MM player but it’s better than him having some struggles against some 2nd rate player. Obv he’s paid to not have those struggles, but I think we both realize he’s likely to get restructured. But even if he were getting paid $7-8mil now you wouldn’t feel very good about the fact that he struggled with those two.

          • GEAGLE

            No player, coming off an Achilles injury should EVER be expected to play at the 10million level in his first year back from surgery.. If you were willing to pay him that this year while you knew you wouldn’t get his best all year, I assume that you expect him to be a part of this new era of football.

            Paying him what we paid him this year, knowing you wouldn’t see him at his best, leads me to believe you are committing to getting him back y his pre injury form, that takes TIME. No front office guy or coach will bring a guy back from injury, and get rid of him before seeing if he can get back to his pre injury form in his second year back from injury…i just don’t believe it works that way, especially when talking about a special talent who is one of your leaders…..I don’t know how much JP will make, but I will be absolutely shocked if he isn’t keeping FOles clean next year…not only do I expect him to be back, but I expect him to be the top LT in the NFL next year.

          • aub32

            I have to disagree with you on Celeck, Casey, and Peters. Peters has been playing really well for the most part. Is he overpaid? Maybe a little, but there are certain positions that you overpay for. Please tell me the alternative before you jettison out LT.

            Celeck has been more than a blcoking TE. The guy can get RAC. He has been underutilized, but the guy can play. Casey is just stuck behind two guys, but have you been watching other teams that lost their TE? I don’t know about you, but I love knowing that if we lose a TE there is another there to step in and not be terrible.

          • cliff henny

            for 10m, you can sign someone-plus, am admitting over-reacting. why in the world pay casey? going to be some unpopular moves. maybe some restructuring. but ertz is getting more snaps. remamber, due to tri-mester bs, he had no ff season or camp.
            .
            these games show you one thing, the difference between 25th best wr/te/cbs etc and 50th is very minimal. the difference is getting top 5-10 guys like shady and d-jax, mathis.

          • aub32

            My question is who. Who can we get? Names? Please name a LT that we can get that is better than Peters? If you do that then I suggest calming down. Keep in mind the Steelers traded for Lebi Brown earlier this season.

          • Andy124

            I think the idea would be to move LJ over to the left side and let Kelly, Bamiro and Barbre compete for the starting RT spot.

            Similar to the scenario where we move Peters to RG.

            Personally, I think he’ll be better next year than this, before he starts aging. And OL tend to age a little better than most other positions iirc.

          • BlindChow

            Yeah, I don’t get the rush to get rid of Peters. Maybe if we need the cap room, but looking at all the teams with awful tackle situations, Peters is just fine.

          • Richard Colton

            I’m one of the guys who thinks OT is a top three/top four need on this team, but no, I’m in no rush to get rid of Peters.

          • bentheimmigrant

            Definitely a high priority, unless we think Barbre would be fine starting for a full season if it came down to that (which he might, based on limited snaps). You’ve got to be in a position where losing your LT or RT won’t ruin your season.

          • GEAGLE

            I would expect us to draft a OG before an OT

          • Andy124

            If we did get rid of him, we’d have to sign someone else with a fallic last name.

          • Adam

            We can’t leave our Johnson dangling out there without some help from Peters

          • Richard Colton

            that’s what happens when you throw away Ed Wang without thinking. Come on Howie!

          • Guest

            Why didn’t we dangle our wang in front of other teams before just cutting him?

          • GEAGLE

            JP Next year will be so much better then he is this year, and our coaches and front office people know it…you don’t RUSH a SPECIAL player at a CRUCIAL position out the door before you see him in his second year back from injury…it just doesn’t work that way…if you weren’t willing to be patient with him then you woulda cut your losses before this season…no front office person would expect him to just step back on hey be field and Immediately be the player that he was…and actually, for the most part, JP has been a TOP LT THIS year! NOT the DOMINANT best LT in the game he was pre injury, but Yous are talking about him as if he is a liability to who looks like Demetress bell

          • Adam

            It would be nice if he was so much better, but the dudes gonna be 33. It’s important to temper expectations.

          • GEAGLE

            Which means he is like 28yrs old at other positions.
            ….
            If I whole heartedly believe he will be starting for us for ATleast another two years, what do you want me to tell you? I Genuinly believe that…you can disagree with me all you want, but I can only give you my point of view and what I THINK our decision makers will do…

            Was enthusiasm MY thing when I spent months talking about how bad:
            Nate
            Vick
            Celek
            Herremans
            Coleman????

            About 90% of the players I was “enthusiastic about” PERFORMED and proved doubters wrong…so am I an enthusiast, or a realist that tried to factor coaching, improvements of young players, untapped potential, into my oppinion? Just asking…lol and Cliff is my boy, so I’m not exactly sure why anyone thinks I was coming at his neck, just giving my thoughts on what I think will happen

          • Andy124

            I’m pretty sure you talked enthusiastically about how bad they’d be, and I would never begrudge you that. :)

          • Adam

            Where does the 28 at other positions come from? I’ve never heard that about offensive lineman before. That’s a lot of weight on those frames and those knees, especially at LT battling the other teams top pass rusher every down. Plus rupturing your achilles not once but twice doesn’t help either. He’s still a great player but I think after next year Howie and company are going to look to their number 4 overall pick and figure out if he can the cheaper, younger answer. I’d love to have JP around till he retires but there are going to be teams who are willing to pay him more than we are soon, especially with Johnson waiting in the wings.

          • GEAGLE

            Do you disagree that players at different positions have longer shelf lives than other positions? For example would you disagree that a 31yr old RB probably isn’t the same thing as a 31year old OT?
            ,…
            When did Runyan and Tre hang it up?

            There is plenty of precedent for guys being much better their second year coming off a serious leg injury….if JP was really struggling to play this year, or couldn’t get on the field his first year removed from injury, THEN I would understand peoples concerns…but if you take the 10mil price tag out of the equation, for the most part you have gotten some quality OT play out of him…so I really don’t understand why anyone would think this is the best it’s going to be for him? I would have hoped we learned from Demeco…..
            ..
            A guy like Derrick Rose who can’t play a year removed from injury is WHO you worry about…a guy who is playing as a top 20 OT a year after being injured is not a cause for concern, actually his play THis soon, should EXCITE people for how he will play in year two…..you aren’t watching some Shell of his former self, you are watching a guy perform well for the most part in the most high tempo offense in huge league…when it comes to JP, I GENUINLY don’t even understand peoples concerns…

          • Adam

            RB’s age faster than other positions, but 32 is still old in football terms no matter how you slice it. Runyan and Tre are the exceptions, not the rules.

            You can’t just take the 10 mil price tag out of the equation, it’s the biggest part of the equation.

            This is what people are concern about GEagle:

            Peters makes 10 mil next year. Unless he gets substantially better before the season ends, there’s a very real chance the Eagles don’t feel he’s worth that much money. He’s playing fine right now but fine isn’t good enough for that much money. They will either A) Look to trade him B) Ask him to renegotiate or C) Cut him. You simply can’t wait for camp to start to figure out if he’s bounced back.

            He won’t take a cut. He can get top LT money elsewhere from a more desperate team, and he’s in the twilight of his career so he has to chase the paper. If you can get a 2nd or 3rd for him and you feel confident enough in Lane I think you pull the trigger on that.

            Eagles don’t have a ton of leverage in this situation as far as getting that cap number down, which is why I don’t think JP will be here next year.

          • GEAGLE

            Meco makes 7mil, should I be concerned with price Tags? The year to worry about price tags was last year..you aren’t going to lose intrical parts of a playoff team…you are going to add to It, and seeing how Chip operates, I don’t we will ever see quality walk while we are a contender, unless we have someone we can count on being ready and not skip much of a beat waiting in the wings…Howie might have not earned his stripes as a personel guy, but I couldn’t trust a GM more with Cap management…for over a decade we haven’t lost ANYONE do to money. banner might have not thought you were worth what you were asking. But we ALWAYS had the money to do whatever we wanted. We have had a top Team for half a decade and never had money concerns…why would that start now? Howie is a whiz, we don’t NEED JP for 5 more years, but we could certainly use him for two more years until we groom his replacement or lanes when Lane replaces JP…A Cap whiz like Howie can find a way to keep JP and make the money work..you give him a higher signing bonus. Incentives he knows he will reach that, and structure it so he still gets his money without it crippling us and in a way we can get out of it in two years without taking a Cole type cap hit…

            I won’t seriously discuss cap issues until I see us Not have the money to do whatever we please one single time..until that happens, it’s one of the few things that don’t concern me and that’s a testament to Howie…
            ….
            You will pay him more in signing bonus, IF NEED BE, rather than Lose one of your leaders and break up our strength at Oline which if you haven’t noticed is our CONTINUITY!!!…

            I caution not to be spoiled by lanes ability into thinking we can just easy replace OUR OTs and find guys with their ability to operate in space, in a high tempo offense, while protecting your QB…
            ..
            JP isn’t GOING ANYWHERE!!! If he isn’t here in September who can count on my appology

          • aub32

            I could argue Celeck Herremans and Vick did well in what they were asked to do. Also, some of the players you championed *cough* Clay Harbor couldn’t even make the team. So….

          • GEAGLE

            Dude, I never been much of a Clay harbor fan..NEVER. Thought he had a chance to make a team when it seemed like our coach wanted 5Tes….but you won’t find one archive of me complain ning when we cut harbor???try agin troll.
            ..
            And you don’t have to argue ANYTHING when talking to me because I always keep it real. I praised Vick when he played well, I gave props to every single eagle that has ever deserved it. YOU think I wouldn’t WANT to be wrong about every player we ever have that I think sucks? You think I wouldn’t want a better team because I care about being right in your eyes? Then you must not be familiar with me at all.
            .”
            Yo don’t get to argue anything about me, because I own every time I’m wrong front and center before you will ever get the chance to call me on it. Always have, always will…and considering my success rate, compared to the rest, why would you think I can’t comfortably admit to being wrong?
            Lol
            All I did was talk about how wrong I was about Celek and nate(prior to yesterday)…I was always more wait and see with Herremans so I don’t have to own nothing to him….and you have some nerve bringing up Vicks name to me after leading the FOles brigade…leave it up to fools like you and FOles would be tearing it up for Kansas City and we would be watching Vick fumble 6 times a game til he got injured and had to watch Barkley close his eyes while running zone reads because he is scared to death…haha

          • Andy124

            cliff likes to play with the cap and see where he can save money. It’s his thing. Enthusiam is your thing. Lets not begrudge each other our things (awkward wording intentional).

          • GEAGLE

            Doubt Casey will be gone. Expecting his role on this team to continue to grow with time…and since he is a solid and willing ST contributor, I expect it to keep him here while we wait for his role to grow….we haven’t seen closely Casey’s best yet, so I doubt we will get rid of him after just one year

          • GEAGLE

            I’m not going to agree or disagree with your wants..what I will say is I expect coach and the front office to bring back:
            Celek
            Casey
            Demeco
            Peters
            Cooper

            I’m always going to be down to upgrade EVERY and ANY position. That’s what fans do… But I will be absolutely SHOCKED if this offense let’s any of them walk. Now I don’t know how they will retain them, whether they continue to pay their exsisting contract or restructure it, whether they overpay for Coop of talk him into giving us a discount…I don’t know how we decide to go about keeping those guys! but personally I will be shocked if any of them aren’t here next year…
            ….
            The guys I have no idea about their future here are:
            Maclin
            Rejus
            COlt who I want to see on ST with Jason Phillips
            Nate…probably gone tho..

            Players who have no shot of being here:
            1) Kurt Coleman
            2) assuming Chung is gone

          • jesse

            you my friend are wrong on more then one thing here Brent Celek Is a great player he blocks well and is a well above average receiver and peters is a beast what season have you been watching?

      • Scott J

        Nate Allen’s nickname should be Caboose because he’s always following a receiver into the end zone.

      • GEAGLE

        Another silver lining is: SB is far fetched enough this year…an 11’game winning streak is even more far fetched…realistically we had to take a dip at some point, hopefully this weeks letdown allows us another 3-5 weeks of inspired play…
        ..
        Other silver linings…Kendricks played really well yesterday when you watch his film…rookies Benny Logan, And Ertz were fantastic..

        But yeah, you still need a young WR with playmaking potential or possession WR type.
        ..
        Still desperately need your pass rush OLB force
        ..
        Still need that playmaking Safety. I honestly believe if you get Byrd or someone of comparable talent and playmaking ability and pair him with Wolff, Cary!Brad and Boykin will form a secondary we can go to war with…however, because drafting CBs these days SUCKS and they need some serious time of seasoning before you can start them and count on them(if you have playoffs hopes), we still have to take a CB somewhere around the 4th or 5th(we have two picks in that round), who we can develope for a few years and step in for Cary or Brad two years from now.

        As strong as our Dline is, especially in terms of potential, we need to be 6 deep with impact linemen, and we don’t have that yet. Eventually we have to do away with square and Gaethers. Hopefully Kruger takes one of their spots next year, but that would still leave room for another Dline talent…..while Dline isn’t our biggest need, I think we are in a real position to draft BPA so if Shede Hagemen is on the top of our board when we pick in round 1, I would be ok with passing up on positions of bigger need….6/7 Shede and 6’6 Kruger could come off the bench with Curry to form a strong 2nd unit next year

  • Alex

    Eagles 4 point favorites on Donbest, and the action seems to be coming in on the Bears.

    http://www.donbest.com/nfl/odds/20131217.html

  • fartman

    With the pooch and squib kicks (playing scared) and so many Viking starters out of the lineup (overconfidence?), I can’t imagine what was going on in the back of Eagles players’ minds… like, we’re afraid of getting burnt by Patterson, but we should be KILLING this team. In either case, execution on both sides of the ball (D especially) and ST was lacking and Chip needs to be a little sharper on things, like when to go for it on 4th down, when to go for 2 (everybody watching knew he should have), and how to establish a run game even when the opposing D is stacking the box. All in all, this is a game you need to learn from and forget quickly. Also, DALLAS SUCKS

  • jabostick

    Great post Sheil! I’m absolutely on board with Chip going for it on 4th and 1. They needed the sense of urgency and it was a short yard. They should’ve got it.

    I thought the PI on Fletcher was a phantom call. Acknowledging my homerism, I thought it was an awful call. Take the extra 4 the Vikes got there, and the 4 Philly left on the field with the Foles illegal block, and that’s a pretty big swing

  • Bdawkbdawk

    The decision to squib on kickoffs does not seem too crazy to me. Going into the game against a backup QB, a third string running back, and a generally underperforming WR corps, Chip and the staff thought we had a favorable matchup. Against Patterson and the Vikings’ return unit, we thought we had an unfavorable matchup. As a result, you shift burden from the unfavorable matchup to the favorable matchup.
    Obviouslty, they were grossly mistaken about the first assumption, but I don’t think we could have known that until we played the game. And after we practiced it all week and were already losing, we didn’t want to change our strategy (trading practiced and quantifiable risk for unpracticed and unquantifiable risk)
    Seems like a sound strategy to me (exactly the type of moderate risk, high reward strategy that we hired Chip for) – just terrible execution.

  • Farrukh Siddiqui

    “But watching the replay, I think the Eagles might have been able to avoid the fourth-down call altogether. On third down, McCoy ran a toss to the right and appeared to have picked up the first down. I wonder if a challenge there would have benefited the Eagles.” Great observation Sheil. I didn’t see anyone else point this out. A challenge on the 3rd & 1 would have worked from the replay that was shown. This is an instance of the super fast Eagles pace hurting them. They had time to check replays and throw the flag after that play.

    “… LeSean McCoy only got eight carries” This was big deal. Sure the Eagles scored 30 points and Foles threw from over 400 yards but by running more, they could have avoided so many 3 and outs, slowed down the Vikings pass rush and probably woud have established much better rhythm on offense. Not to mention, McCoy may have broken a couple along the way. It is inexcusable for the leading rusher in the NFL to get 8 carries. Nick Foles has been great but McCoy is the best player on offense. Foles should be eased into the type of quarterback who can throw 50 times a game and win games single handedly. When that day comes, he would have had an 75% completion rate in a game like yesterday instead of 62%.

    “What the deal was with Kelly’s kickoff strategy?” This one is truly dumbfounding. To not even attempt to stop Patterson one time in the game by first kicking it out of the end zone is crazy. You mentioned Eagles were 4th worst in coverage but I am sure last week’s crazy snow returns factored into that. Before last week, the Eagles seemed to be doing fine in kick coverage. Anyway, this was a defeatist move by Chip Kelly and really hurt the birds and was compounded on a day when the defense just didn’t show up.
    Overall, this was by far Chip’s worst game from a game planning, adjustment and in game situation management. No matter what he or anyone else will admit to, he simply didn’t have his team ready to play. They most definitely looked past the Vikings and the defense really smelled themselves. From the fans perspective, they stunk from Minnesota to Philadelphia.
    Great job Sheil for all the innovative writing you’ve been doing. Birds 24/7 is a must read everyday. Kudos to Tim as well.

  • cliff henny

    unacceptacle for over-reaction Monday…Kapadia Concern Scale should be 10’s across the board. seriously, if you have couple minutes and want to really read some devistated fans, bloggingtheboys.com is a good time. just a warning, i started reading around 11pm last night and could not log off.

    • Richard Colton

      Always makes me feel better. I wish they used Disqus. I’d love to see Andy or Nick troll some dimwitted ‘Boys fans.

    • BlindChow

      It’s nice they still don’t think they can beat the Eagles, even after we had our own kind of meltdown yesterday.

      • cliff henny

        yup, the pain just pours thru the screne, doesnt it? best part is, when discussing how to fix teams, the rational ones pointing out how collosally cap screwed jones has them get shouted down. can fire all the coaches they want, i have no clue unless jones have 2 or 3 historically great drafts, how dallas is going to be anything more than 5-8 win team for next 5 or 6 yrs.

        • BlindChow

          Also, if the Cowboys do beat us in two weeks, that almost guarantees Garrett keeps his job.

          So a year from now, while we’ll probably be much improved, they’ll still be as inept as ever, choking away huge leads by putting the ball in Romo’s wonderful, wonderful hands…

          • cliff henny

            yup, he’ll think he’s closer than he is. bring in couple more free agents, kick the cap can down the road some more. if being honest, think dallas gets away with it 2 more yrs, maybe get lucky with 10 wins, but starting ’16 it is a pwderkeg. he has to extend so many underperforming expensive vets just to resign draft picks and has dez in ’15, romo will get old, it’ll be ugly.

          • GEAGLE

            I have a question…how does Garrett have a job TODAY?
            SERIOUS Question!!!
            ..
            You are in the middle of an epic meltdown with your playoff hopes on the line. You are sitting with the lead having the biggest known choke artist in the NFL at QB, who has two times as many late 4th quarter INTs with the game in the balance as any other QB(since 2006)…how do you get to keep your job, when with the game in the balance, you call a run play and give THAT QB a pass option? HOW???? WHY???
            ..
            If I’m coaching Romo, trying to preserve a lead so late in the game, I would call a timeout so I could tie his arms to his body so he could do nothing other then take the snap and hand it off, instead this idiot who has been coaching this QB for YEARS gives this idiot the option to change it to a pass at the LOS? How does he have a job today? it’s been YEARS and you haven’t fixed a single mistake and you reward these idiots with big money contracts?

            fans who don’t give Nick enough credit need to really understand how incredible he has been. You see 100 million dollar QBs with half a decades experience in the offense they are running make mistakes that FOles doesn’t even consider making. Our entire offense is predicated on giving the QB options at the LOS and TRUSTING his judgement to choose the right play and then execute it. We have a QB with 16 games of experience, who hasn’t even seen this offense for a year yet, and has to not only read the defense and chose the right version of the play to run, but he also has to be on the same page with the WRs who have option routes within the play you chose….It’s INCREDIBLE what the kid has done and people are a JOKE if they think they seen what FOles is yet..this kid has SOOO much room to grow yet I just had to listen to a dope like Skip Bailis call him “FOles Gold” as in fraudulent fools gold….for so many different reasons, there is NO WAY Nick should be playing as well as he has played so soon in his inexperienced career, playing so soon in an offense he has only experienced for about 8 months…what he has done is special, and it’s a shame that so many people are so clueless. People just think playing QB is easy and that the moment you are drafted and take the field, you should look like Peytcn…what this kid is doing is special, and it gives serious hope for greatness….then when you add his leadership,accountability,work ethic, fearlessness, you have all the ingredients for a special QB who is going to make a lot of people look stupid

            You give Scandrick a big money extension and Jordy Nelson just jumps over you and catches what should have been an easy ENDZONE INT?

          • cliff henny

            the problem is romo had cowboys over barrell with this last contract. if they didnt sign him, he was walking, and they had no one behind him. sounds like romo was given more control over offense by jones than garrett has. getting 7.5 yards a pop and romo audibles out of run and tosses pick. but nothing JG can do. meddling owners are the greatest…thanks jones thank you snyder!

          • GEAGLE

            JG can’t call a run play without a pass option?

            I might sound crazy,and it’s not even about this year…I woulda just let him walk, or even try trading him to some ready to win team like the Texas…what’s the point of stats when you have a mental midget who clearly does not have the right mental wiring tô EVER win a SB….
            ….

          • cliff henny

            think your 10 yr vet would know to run it. or, not toss a pick. JG can only do so much.
            .
            they cant, he is basically cowboys starting qb till ’20. they’ll be in serious trouble if he starts missing games. no one behind him. orton is gone, about only guy that give them relief in cap

          • GEAGLE

            Til 2020? Hahahahahaha

          • cliff henny

            yup. forget who sent the article-reg poster on 24/7, but it’s on overthecap.com. jones has cap so messed up, that romo’s extension was built with 2-3 load years in the back end, so in effect dallas needs to give him threw ’19 to make cap work in 2 yrs. (like they did with scandrick). they have to do something regardless, ’14 his cap number is 21m in ’15 it’s 25m (sal cap isnt schedule to go up till ’16). romo had cowboys over barrell, and what looked like a team friendly 3 yr extension, thru ’16, is going to end up having him make top qb money right on thru rest of this decade. thank you Howie!

            http://overthecap.com/cap.php?Name=Tony Romo&Position=QB&Team=Cowboys

          • Maggie

            Jason Garrett doesn’t call the plays, remember?

          • GEAGLE

            What’s worse, their cap initiation or the national debt?

          • Maggie

            Injured Green Bay score 37 points. Injured Vikings scored 48 points. Why is the losing QB in one game still okay, while the losing QB in the other game is absolutely 100% to blame for everything? Reasonable question, even from a biased fan.

          • Andy124

            Because Romo sucks. Join us Maggie. You know you want to say it. It’s like a drug. First hit’s free.

  • jabostick

    That was a super frustrating game but a ‘big picture’ silver lining was that, with the Xmas gift the Cowboys gave, it is sort of a good thing to get this loss out of the way. 7+ game winning streaks aren’t terribly common in the NFL. We got our stinker out of the way and all the problems that manifested itself seem fixable. A lot of it is effort and sharper execution kind of stuff. Secondary depth looks to be an issue (especially if Boykin’s out) but Nate and Flecther and Sconces can all play much better.

    And I hope Chip lets Roc know that, when you’re getting lit up, a taunting penalty is not an option. We’re not the Giants.

    As others have said on the kickoffs, I didn’t agree with it, but it was apparent listening to Chip that the players didnt do what was asked of them so its hard to knock the strategy

  • Andy

    Totally agree they need to put two microchips in the ball for the purposes of spotting–determining forward progress, where the ball is when someone steps out of bounds, and when it is across the goal line. What’s the hold up?

    • Andy124

      It’s amazing this hasn’t been done already. Of course, could be something like baseball refusing to use technology to determine balls and strikes. Hopefully football isn’t as stupid.

      • DLRJ

        I agree that it might help somewhat, but it doesn’t solve the problem completely. You still have to figure out when a guy’s knee is down and such to determine at what moment you take the data from the microchip(s).

        • ztom6

          they can sync it with the tape surely.

          • Warhound

            Yeah, but someone still has to use the human eyeball to determine when he’s down. Still,
            I’m all for the chips!

          • BlindChow

            I say use a glass field with cameras underneath, so you can see from below exactly when various body parts have touched the ground. Also it would make sliding easier.

  • Stephen Staedtler

    The game turned when on 3rd and 14 after the Eagles pulled within 27-22, and the defense gave up a 38 yard play to backup TE Chase Ford.

    • ztom6

      Looked like Kendricks got a hand on it too… so close, yet so far.

      • Adam

        He should have went for the tackle instead of the ball, and he said as much. Big mistake but its tough to fault a guy for trying to make a play. He had a good game otherwise.

        • GEAGLE

          I put it on the safety…sure I would like to see Mykal shut that down, but when you are playing a simple Man Under coverage your safety can’t whiff on an open field tackle…our safeties certainly didn’t do the heir job and keep the defense safe on that play..I can’t remember which safety blew that tackle, but does it really matter when you trot 4 safeties on the field and every one of them allow WR to get behind them and whiffed on multiple tackles?

          After yesterday, people will re think their Nate love and whether we should sign him…but I don’t know why you wouldn’t try to upgrade that position when a players contract expires to begin with? I’m also NEVER all in for signing a guy who plays drastically better during his contract year then every other year prior

          • ztom6

            I think it was Colt Anderson.

          • GEAGLE

            Probably was, by that time of the game he was back there a lot….but you can’t have a safety miss an open field tackle in the middle of the he field when you are playing man Under…it can’t happen! Then again, Colt really isn’t a safety, he is a special teams player so I guess I have to live with it when he is on defense…Colt should never be put in that position, but we need a safety who can make that play

        • aub32

          He was feeling himself a little too much after the INT and the sack.

  • Max Lightfoot

    Mini blanket party for DJax. Someone needs to take the little fellow aside and tell him to STFU on the sidelines. He’s good – but prima donna good? Nah

    • aub32

      The guy got upset because he could have easily had 50+ more yards and 2 more TDs. How is that being a prima dona?

      • Richard Colton

        is that why he got upset? because it looked like he got upset at Avant for calling him out for dogging the INT.

        • GEAGLE

          I think he was upset at the WR coach for calling him out on his pouting/lack of effort and Avant,Coop got in the middle

      • theycallmerob

        he was upset because his teammates called him out on the prater INT. Cooper was the one who hustled all the way back from the end zone to catch prater from behind at the 30. DJax was already pointing fingers.

        • aub32

          He was upset that he did not get the ball. The argument may have been about him being called out, but let’s not question the guys hustle. Remeber in ATL when he stopped the INT or FUM return bringing down a guy twice his size. The guy cares.

          • Richard Colton

            He cares a lot. Then he doesn’t. He’s not consistent with the effort or emotion. Jason Avant would never have done that. Neither would Jerry Rice.

          • aub32

            Jason Avant doesn’t have the ability to do what Jackson does. If we are talking about guys that don’t have the right to be upset, he is the definition of that.
            ….
            The only time DJax didn’t care was in 2011. I have had this debate with others, but personally I give the guy a pass. He was one of the teams best players and they paid everyone else but him. As much as he owes this team, he owes his family and himself more. Had he blown out his knee that year, do you think the team would have cared? Would they have given him a hometown contrct? We always talk about players giving a hometown discount or playing for peanuts but rarely get on the team for treating a player poorly.

          • Richard Colton

            You’re not going to get an argument from me about his value. We’re a better team with DeSean than without him. But he isn’t a leader. He’s not a “character guy.” He’s a petulant brat, who also happens to be one of our best weapons. Like you said, he’s taken ENTIRE SEASONS off. He’s taken plays off. Is he a cancer like TO or Randy Moss? Not even close. But man, plays like Sunday make it hard to love the guy.

            With his size/speed/heart – he could have been Allen Iverson in this town. But he never will be. Sunday showed why.

          • aub32

            Every player in the NFL takes plays off. Even Jerry Rice will admit to taking plays off.

          • Andy124

            Rice hasn’t taken a play off in like 9 years.

          • OregonDucker

            I agree with your points but we need a receiver with attitude who can give sh*t to taunting DBs like Sherman. You take the bad with good. A lot of crap goes on out there between receivers and DBs.

          • Adam

            There are very few receivers in the NFL that are talented as hell that don’t have a bit of diva in them or have some sort of baggage. I’m hoping we can find one in the draft to compliment DeSean.

          • theycallmerob

            No. See richard below. Your logic is flawed. Because he cares once does not mean he always cares.
            Yesterday, like plenty of other games, he stopped caring at bad times. It is who he is. But you can’t pretend it didn’t happen

    • Richard Colton

      that ship has sailed. at this point he is who he is. have to take the good with the bad, he’s the best deep threat we have…best cliches I could think of

      • aub32

        He has shown this season that he is much more than just a deep threat. The guy is a legit receiver. top 15

        • Richard Colton

          I agree. That’s why you kinda have to live with some of the nonsense. That said – it’s still nonsense, and he needs to grow up. As long as we’re winning, I can live with Leon acting like Leon.

      • Andy124

        Take the good with the bad is my view as well. As long as the coaches don’t think it’s ever going to go beyond being a little pissed on the sideline, I’m happy to look past it.

        He didn’t seem to let it affect his play. Had a great effort play that happened after that incident.

        • Richard Colton

          hard to argue with the stats – career day for DeSean. 10 catches, 195 yards, TD, 1 sideline meltdown, 1 hissy fit, 1 self serving passive aggressive press conference.

          All in all – a banner day.

          • Adam

            Are you new to the NFL or something? Jeeze man, WR’s acting like this just happens. You deal with it. Our offense would be in he basement of every category without DJax.

          • Richard Colton

            hahaha. Not taking the bait. Notice he didn’t take me up on my offer to come on this thread and rip Sheil?

      • Max Lightfoot

        You’re probably right – what’s bred in the bone will out in the flesh. But it is annoying, ain’t it?

    • OregonDucker

      We need his attitude when he goes against Sherman in NFCC game.

      • GEAGLE

        I ripped him a new one earlier, but I’m fully aware that it’s a neccessary Evil…we have to taken the bad with the good…he is just too valuable….With Chip still knowing the college kids so well, I’m dying to see which WRs he choses to drafts and how well he develops them….if Chip is able to add 1 or 2 WR version of Lane,Logan,Ertz,Wolff in the draft our offense really really becomes Scary….I WANT Chip to be able to draft his own WR or two especially if we continue to draft the way we have been…I’m also so curious to see who and what type of WR he goes after…
        ..
        Just imagine what this offense will look like if FOles continues to develop, I expect his first offseason as the man (second offseason in a new offense) will be the biggest and most important offseason of his career. I expect him to grow darastically in this offense this summer…if he sticks to the script, and our line/shady stay healthy, this offense could really be an NFL POWERHOUSE if he is sorrounded with:
        Desean
        Cooper
        Brad Smith
        Allen Robinson
        Jarvis Landry
        Ertz who looks legit
        And a bruising Celek who found his long lost hands

        I’m not married to Landry and Robinson because this is such a strong WR class in terms of depth, I just used them as examples…basically as proxies for two high draft picks that pan out with these coaches

        • OregonDucker

          He will also look at Brandin Cooks. He knows his play and the kid’s low 40 is 4.42. He’s a little short at 5.10 but his play makes him interesting.

          http://www.nfldraftscout.com/ratings/dsprofile.php?pyid=119851&draftyear=2015&genpos=WR

          • GEAGLE

            Ducker, I’m sure you followed more Oregon WR corp than I have..from what you have seen from Chip in the past, when you look at what we have, stylistically what type of players are we missing that Chip covets?
            ..
            If we are going with Desean!Coop and Brad smith…what is a Chip Kelly WR unit missing stylistically?

          • OregonDucker

            He likes fast WRs who are not afraid to block. Really. what the Eagles have now is pretty close. He likes at least one tall, big threat (Coop) and a speedster (Djax). They have to be teammates who work hard in practice, don’t complain, and are precise in their routes when no blitz, and can adjust routes to blitz situations. Probably, THE major reason Chip took the Eagles job is that the offense pieces are there. You just lack the kind of precise execution as a team that Chip seeks.

          • GEAGLE

            Thank you kindly brother ducker

  • travis papa

    DJ2 & maehl need cut why do we have 5th & 6th wrs active on gm days. We mostly use 3wr sets if 1 goes down we have 2te sets & Casey available. Why not have an extra cb like marsh out thereon ST. Marsh isnisn’t ganna fix the ST coverage but he would be more useful than those dbags plus I’d rather watch him than Carmichael whose a bum. Couldn’t be any worse. An extra LB active for the other spot don’t know don’t care

  • Kevin

    While I am disappointed in the game and the execution, these things happen from time to time in the NFL…. see Sunday… Rams beat the Saints, Dolphins beat the Pats, Steelers beat the Bengals, and even throw in the Chargers over the Broncos on Thursday.
    The way the team bounces back and regroups is going to be the key. They are really no better or worse off than they were before they played. Use this as a learning experience and move forward.

    • GEAGLE

      Absolutely…yesterday was horrible, but it doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things, other then we still have some growing to do mentally.

      Brees sucked against the rams, but that doesn’t mean anything big picture
      Brady loses to Tannahill,..doesn’t change much
      Romo loses to A backup who got there less then a month ago, who spotted romo almost a 30pt head start

      Losses against teams you are supposed to beat literally happens all the time, even to the great. Just think how many times you watch a pregame show and see every analyst pick one team, and how often an upset occurs…it happens all the time….Confident that we have the coaches and locker room leaders that learn a lot from yesterday…if we had Jason garret on the he sideline! romo behind center and Dez in the locker room, I would be Freightened that a let down loss like yesterday would cause us to unravel…i really don’t expect that to be the case, 6 days we find out..if we come out, hell bent on pounding the ball down the bears throats, and our defense getting back to playing the run tough containing Forte…we win the division next week.

      I’m convinced Kurt Cousins will beat Romo next week. If yesterday was a learning experience that was good for us, then the bears are in trouble and we will be celebrating a division title at midnight on Sunday..a hungry, well coached team that gets embarrassed like yesterday, comes back strong and angry the next week, and guts out a win…hopefully this week flies by so we can find out

      • dislikedisqus

        Good persoective. This week, Peyton, Brady & ,Brees all lost. One game doesn’t define a season. It’s your total body of work.

  • ACViking

    Sheil wrote:

    “The Bears are mediocre defensively, and the Cowboys are horrendous.
    There’s no reason he shouldn’t be able to pick both teams apart in the
    final two games.”

    That sounds so familiar. Almost like I heard it this past Saturday.

    • BlindChow

      Exactly what I was thinking. That’s been the kiss of death for this team the last couple years. Maybe time to start thinking about the draft…

      • Adam

        C’mon Chow, don’t be a fair weather fan.

        • BlindChow

          Don’t worry, I was being satirical.

    • GEAGLE

      Crazy stats:
      Since 2006, Romo has double the amount of 4th quarter INTs when their team is tied or has the lead more then any other QB since 2006

      In the redzone these past two years, Brady is completing 28% of his passes to targets not named gronkowski

  • Scott J

    Theres a serious lack of communication with Kelly and the guys upstairs who watch replays. Isn’t it Shurmur’s job to tell Kelly to challenge a call on the field?

  • GEAGLE

    The young gunslinger GETS IT: “I understand Desean. He is such a competitor, wears his heart on his a sleeve, wants to win so bad and make a play for his team..I let him cool off, then I grabbed Desean to the side and told him to just stay with me, I’m gonna keep firing all game, and Desean was with me the rest of the way. We will get better and closer because of a game like that”
    ….
    Basically, on the microphone, he is the anti donovan

    • Richard Colton

      “Stay with me DeSean. One day…it’s going to be you, me, and an audience of 100 million. I’m going to play air guitar to pump up the team and you’re going to…DeSean? Where you going?

      • GEAGLE

        Lol God forbid…the day FOles whips out the air guitar, is the day I just mail it in as an eagles fan

        • Michael Winter Cho

          I disagree, I liked the air guitar. Didn’t like the on-field results. Foles keeps playing at a high level and wins big games, he can play Air Lynyrd Skynyrd for all I care.

          • GEAGLE

            Dude, half the world knew we were losing that game as soon as they saw the air guitar….

          • Nah__Roots

            Still one of the most ridiculous things to apply hindsight to, agreed.

    • GEAGLE

      I’m sure Desean will appreciate his QB defending him, and practically taking the blame for a loss on his shoulders, even if it wasn’t really on him…hey Donovan, you taking Notes? Maybe now you will understand that their is more to being a QB, then how you play on the field…Mcnabb is just a cross between Scooby doo and Yogi bear and Goofy, with the annoying Rodney Peete smile sprinkled in

    • Andy124

      Not impressed. Totally missed his chance to break in to song *Cue the Turtles music*

      Imagine me and you, I do
      I think about leading you, from left to right
      To think about the bombs I’ll throw, next Sunday night
      So happy togetheeerrrr!!!

      I can’t see me lovin’ nobody but you
      My football life
      When you run the stop and go, I’ll always throw
      The ball to you

      Me and you. And you and me.
      No matter how I toss the ball, you’ll give your all
      The only one for me is you, and you for me
      So happy togetheeerrrr!!!

      Riley Cooper seen in the backround looking jealous and heartbroken. A single tear rolls down his cheek as he exits stage left.

      • Richard Colton

        Happy Together was the Turtles. Impressed with the song though. If we want to stick with the Monkeys theme – there’s Jerruh “Davy” Jones and the ‘boys singing Last Train to Clarksville.

        • Andy124

          Fixed. Thanks.

          How about “Davy” Jones signing I’m a Believer to Romo and Garrett? Or maybe to the mirror.

          • Richard Colton

            nice

          • Maggie

            Or Eli singing ‘The Love I Lost”?

      • theycallmerob

        not a single tear. I’m thinking Knowshon Tears. Riley looks like a guy who can really cry, hard.

  • nicksaenz1

    Dear Jeffrey, Howie, and everyone else in the organization I’ve ever criticized: I’M SORRY!

    From Bloggingtheboys.com …. (this site immediately changes your perspecitive):

    This game most clearly proves front office missteps on both sides of the ball

    It takes years to grade drafts and great coaching and scheme can further mask the shortcomings of personnel decisions I wont talk about here. However in this game, most clear of all games in Garrett’s tenure the FO has failed. We run the ball 4 times in the second half and we have Tony Romo almost inexcusably audibling out of a run call on 2nd and 6. At this point, the FO must also be held accountable considering the following:

    1. The FO has long considered Garrett the answer in grooming; The ‘best coach available’ to which the FO has pinned its own reputation of decision-making ability.
    2. The FO either deliberately misleads the public to obfuscate Garrett’s responsibility for the offense or recognizes a change is needed by giving Callahan ‘play-calling duties.’
    3. The FO further obfuscates Garrett’s offensive role by giving Romo “Peyton Manning” responsibility in the film room and from this the FO implies (at least indirectly) Romo’s responsibility to run the offense has increased.

    This is the corner the FO has painted themselves into to keep the charade in place and save face. The offense must now be performing at a contending level if not in the past few years. This performance, these 4 runs in the second half show that the offense clearly isn’t right. The offensive play-calling isn’t right. The offense play-calling engineered by the FO isn’t right. The FO isn’t right…
    Expect a turbulent off-season to hide this fact if we’re eliminated from contention or in the first round. Book it.

    • cliff henny

      wonder who would take over for JG? anyone high profiled has to look at Romo’s production, jones’ drafting, plus meddling and salary cap and think twice. now, they’ve handed the keys of offense over to Romo on top of all that. it’s fun to kick him and cowboys around, but do think he’s a solid nfl qb, back end of top 10. it’s that they treat him like he’s up there with the big 4.

      • nicksaenz1

        Your question makes me think we haven’t seen the last of Garrett. JJ needs to have control, and bringing a high profiile coach in is going to be tough because said coach will likely want things done his way with his players, not Jerry’s. I love the drama down there and reading just a few comments on that blog has made me feel so much better about where we’re at as an organization.

        • cliff henny

          firing JG is like reshuffling the deck chairs on the titanic. http://overthecap.com/teamcap.php?Team=Cowboys&Year=2014

          • nicksaenz1

            Holy s**t!! I knew they were in deep but do you see how many contracts have more dead money than cap value? They should just trade Demarcus Ware for picks and save 8mil right there.

          • cliff henny

            it’s crazy, right? and only way to get under is kick the can down the line. romo’s contract can be massaged to push ’14 and ’15 issues into ’19 and ’20, but then he’s making 20m at 38 and 39. still have to sign own talent, like church selvie carter dez and lee. basically they have 2 yrs and then…ka-bluey!

          • nicksaenz1

            Long live Jerrah!

  • DaBag

    Probably easier from where I was sitting, but does anyone else think that Riley Cooper had a real chance to attack and strip the ball after the Foles interception?

  • Richard Colton

    Still mad about yesterday, but in the interest of healing, here’s my silver lining: the 2013 draft. Nice seeing that both our 2nd and 3rd round picks can play. Not a Jaiquawan Jarrett or Daniel Teo in the bunch.

    • GEAGLE

      Basically, Lane has performed like the top pick overall since he is the best rookie OT in the NFL, even if he struggled yesterday…Ertz and Logan are playing as well as any first round pick…If Ertz and Eiffert were both on the board, no one can convince me that Eiffert would be picked first if there was a redraft….and Logan is playing as well as any rookie interior linemen you can find. AT the very least Wolff looks like a 3rd round talent, probably second rounder…..that’s a heckuva draft

      • Richard Colton

        Boys took Gavin Escobar in round two, didn’t they? He’s struggled, Great draft they had, huh?

        • cliff henny

          hey, let them keep overhyping players. cant wait till dez comes due.

          • Richard Colton

            Dez’s sideline explosion made Desean look like Ralph Bunche

        • GEAGLE

          I don’t even blame that kid…I’m so convinced it’s all about coaching…I would bet a kid like him would look different with Brady and Bellicek….unless you are just a super talent like Dez, I don’t think young players even have a chance with those coaches…basically I think Dallas is a half Joke, half sess pool of stupidity lol..
          ..
          Just look at King Dunlap…he was a joke his entire time here. First year under different coaches and he actually looks half decent.watched him the other day and I thought my eyes were deceiving me lol

        • GEAGLE

          Dude, the center they drafted in the first round would have probably been on the board when they picked in round 2 lol….it used to be hysterical, now it kinda starting to sound sad….lol NOPE,nback to hysterical they are.

          Love you jerry! If you ever need a lung or some important organ to keep you alive and making decisions, cal me, I’m your man!!!

          When Dallas is on the clock and they have to chose a player, is jerry really the guy who looks at the board and makes the final decision on who they choose? If it is,that’s just the greatest most delusional, egomaniacle absurd thing I have ever heard, and i love it

    • phillyeagle77

      This years draft should be very interesting now that we could possibly be looking at rookies that can contribute to our team like players, such as lane johnson, bennie logan, zach ertz, and even earl Wolff.

  • Bird of Prey

    Sheil, the concern scale show’s you’ve got a lot of concerns… I’m just concerned the corners stopped pressing the receivers at the line in long third down situations again. They were back to their prevent coverage standing two yards past the first down marker and letting them run wild through the middle and outside. It’s pretty hard for the d-line to get to the qb when he can get the ball off so quickly to the open receivers. Williams is a strong guy, and when he presses he’s awesome, same with Fletcher. It’s really fundamental coverage technique, but they go prevent too much some times and that kills them. I’d like to see the PFF numbers if they have some on it, but these guys play either a press/contain mix and they are awesome, or for 5 or 6 games they play nothing but contain with safeties back and get rocked for mega yardage. If they don’t press occasionally on Sunday night, those monster receivers of the Bears will have a field day.

    • GEAGLE

      You can’t expect your CBs to get up and press WR all game, when they CLEARLY don’t trust the safety help they are getting, tackling and not allowing a WR to get behind them when they have over the top help….

      You wanna really press WR at the line you better have some sound safeties and secondary that operates as a cohesive unit…we don’t consistently have that yet…the only times we get that this year are when Wolff and Nate are at the top of their game, and we are getting pressure on QBs…

      If you ask Cary to press yesterday, when the pass rush was underperforming and he was counting on Colt Anderson, they might have scored 70 lol
      ..
      Press ONLY works with a pass rush, and over the top safety help you can count on…don’t see how you could have asked that of Cary yesterday
      ….
      We need Wolff on the field against the bears(hopefully he has been taking mental reps), we will respect them, so we will go back to using Barwin to Jam them at the LOS and then release them to the CBs…there just aren’t many CBs alive that can handle Marshall without safety help and a pass rush…

      We HAVE to get a serious pass rush against the bears, and Wolff and Nate need to play up to their ability. Our safeties don’t have to be spectacular because I expect to get pressure on Cutler, but they do need to tackle and be sound in their help assignments…

      bears WR are going to have their moment…they just are, but Cutler is basically stafford/Carson..he will have a few big plays, but he will also give you plenty of opportunities to force turnovers….so basically to win this game we have to get back to our formula of Being physical, playing with more discaplin then our opponent. We have seen that if we do our job, take care of the rock and get a few turnovers, we win games…bears will be no exception.