With 10 games gone in the season, the Eagles have hold of a very respectable 7-3 record. So what’s in store for the rest of the year? Are we cruising towards a 13-3 NFC East domination or heading into the face of a 7-9 collapse? Here are my thoughts.
Of the 10 games so far, Michael Vick has a 5-0 record when starting the game and not being knocked out of it through injury. That’s an impressive record that surely no-one predicted before Vick 2.0 was unleashed. Kolb has managed a 2-1 record, which when added to Vick’s efforts, gives 7-1. The other two games were when one of the Quarterbacks was knocked out of the game (Packers and Redskins) and both resulted in losses. Probably not a huge surprise, given that Vick and Kolb are very different players working within a set game plan. Without those injuries, we could be looking at 9-1. However, without Kolb’s injury in Week 1 we probably wouldn’t have seen Vick’s exploits. Let’s take 7-3 and be very happy with it!
Incidentally, those 3 losses were all against .500 or better teams (Packers, Redskins, Titans) while the Eagles have beaten 5 .500 or better teams (Jaguars, Falcons, Colts, Redskins, Giants). The other 2 wins were against teams with a losing record (Lions, 49ers).
Of the remaining 6 teams to play, 4 of them have a losing record, though the Cowboys are included in that number twice and surely won’t be as easy to beat as their record suggests. Or will they?!
Week 12 @ Bears
The Bears are all about defense. They’re 3rd in the NFL in yards given up (Eagles 9th) and they’re 2nd in interceptions (Eagles 1st) going up against Vick who hasn’t thrown one all year. Add to that that they’re only the 21st ranked team for sacks (Eagles 9th) and I start to feel confident that another big game is in the cards for #7. If they sit back in their Cover 2, Vick will hurt them with his scrambling ability and if they load the line, Jackson and Maclin will have a field day.
On the other side of the ball, the Bears are the 30th ranked team for total yards (Eagles 2nd) and 26th for touchdowns (Eagles 3rd). The Bears appear to end most of their drives in field goals, being ranked 9th. The Eagles are ranked 5th for the same stat and that would be more of a worry if it wasn’t for the amount of touchdowns being clocked up. Safer hands from the Receivers and a certain Mr. Celek could up the touchdown percentage considerably.
I’m putting this one down as a win.
Week 13 v Texans
Win. The Texans suck. Badly. Their game at the Jets was shown on TV over here in the UK last Sunday and it was blindingly obvious that Mark Sanchez would get the late touchdown he needed to win the game. The Texans Secondary is awful. Worse than awful. If you have Vick, Jackson, Maclin, Avant, etc. on your fantasy roster make sure you start them in Week 13!
Week 14 @ Cowboys
The news this week is that Tony Romo’s collar bone is still not healed (shame!) and that he won’t play in this game. The Cowboys are picking up, but Jason Garrett was Offensive Coordinator under the previous Head Coach, so if he was that good then surely the team wouldn’t have been so bad before? The Eagles have some revenge to inflict for those two games at the end of last season and the Receivers especially have a point to prove. By the time game day comes around, the Cowboys could well be 3-9 with games against the Saints and Colts in Weeks 12 and 13. That’ll destroy any momentum that the coaching change has given them and play right into the hands of the Birds. [Already a loss in 12, as the Cowboys lost to the Saints. Steve wrote this before Thursday. - Chuck]
Week 15 @ Giants
The Giants are the only credible threat in the NFC East this year. They also have a fairly kind schedule between now and the end of the season which includes the Jaguars, Redskins (twice) and Vikings. It also, however, includes the Packers and Eagles. This game could go either way. The Eagles certainly had some luck against the Giants last Sunday, though the Eagles Receivers could have had the game won by half time. As it’s at the Meadowlands, I think the Giants just about have the edge.
Week 16 v Vikings
The Vikings are dead in the water. They sit at 3-7, they’ve fired Brad Childress and by all accounts Brett Favre has headed to Mississippi to “think things over.” What’s the betting that he’s placed on IR to save face and the Eagles come up against Tarvaris Jackson? The Vikings have to play the Redskins, Bills, Giants and Bears before they travel to the Linc and by that time they’ll be looking forward to the summer.
Week 17 v Cowboys
Maybe Tony Romo will be back. Maybe Jason Garrett will need the win to secure the Head Coaching job permanently. Maybe the Cowboys will have fought their way back to 7-8. Only one thing’s for sure; the form book will go out the window and anything could happen. Whatever the Cowboys are playing for, none of it will include a trophy while the Eagles could be looking to secure home field advantage for the post season. Has to be a win, surely?
So there we have it. The Eagles will end the season 12-4 and battle it out with Atlanta in the NFC Championship Game. Mike Vick will destroy his former team and win Superbowl MVP in Dallas as the demons from 2004 are exorcised against the Patriots. Glad that’s settled then. Now let’s sit back and enjoy the football this team is playing!
Cheers from the UK and GO BIRDS!