Sunday, August 25, 2013

Eagles - Jaguats: I Know It's Preseason, But...

Lead On, Chip
Tonight in Jackson- ville, the Eagles turned the ball over and fell behind early. They made mistakes in special teams and the running game, with promising youngsters Damaris Johnson and Bryce Brown having killer fumbles. The defense gave up another huge long touchdown run. The game was on the road, in muggy conditions, and after a perfect punt, they were 99 yards away from paydirt and a win, with their scrubs in. Who cares, right?

Well, the guys on the field did. Behind back-up Nick Foles and the chastised Brown, they went 99 yards on the Jaguars, with RB Chris Polk pushing it across, then picking up a 2-point conversion on a mush run into the middle that was comically easy. The defense spent the last few minutes getting reacquainted with the woebegone Mike Kafka, and the club left with a win.

I also have to say that after three games of watching this team... I *adore* the offense. Hurry up and run it down your face? Never suffer another delay of game penalty again? Take the pressure off your QB to stand still for four seconds and go deep? Yes, please, and thank you. And I just don't get the sense that they are going to turn it over as much as previous years, if only because that seems statistically impossible.

Does any of this matter in the least? Well, no; last year's 4-12 ship of fools team went 4-0 in preseason, and if this defense has five current starters on the next Eagle playoff team (ETA: 2014), I'm an airplane. Shouldn't I focus more on the fact that 2-14 Jacksonville kind of handled them in the trenches, with the exception of the team getting a nice pass rush? Probably.

But it's still telling I think, to see the team show actual heart and grit, even if it probably has more to do with playing guys with experience who will get cut in the fourth quarter, over Jacksonville's guys with no experience in the fourth quarter who will get cut.

Oh, and a final point before I close this one up: is there anyone (and I mean anyone) who roots for this laundry that is pining for Andy Reid about now? Or the guy who got the Jags job, Gus Bradley, who Chip beat tonight? No, didn't think so.

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