Playoff Bound!

As an Eagles fan living in the UK, timezones can be a real issue. Primetime games start at 1.20am and keeping in touch with friends in Philadelphia is difficult because when I want to chat during the evening, they’re still at work or spending time with the family. However, there are advantages.

1pm and 4.15pm games start here at 6pm and 9.15pm respectively which is very convenient. I can spend my Sunday doing whatever I like and then settle down for an evening of football. Also, breaking news late in the afternoon is often when I’m free in the evenings and so I can tune in to sports radio and Tweet away.

The news of Nnamdi’s signing broke quite late in the evening for us Brits and it was exciting! Not only had we snatched him from under the cosmetically enhanced nose (allegedly) of Jerry Jones, but it was a serious upgrade of our defense. Twitter almost exploded as Eagles fans all over the world celebrated the news and in Las Vegas, the bookies quickly slashed the price of a Superbowl win for the Birds.

It was late in the evening here though and many of the UK bookies had called it a day. A few were aware enough to cut their odds, but many of them had no idea what had happened so I was able to back the Eagles to win the Superbowl at 16/1. By the next morning, the best price on offer was 10/1 and this went even shorter as the other signings rolled into the City of Brotherly Love.

The start of the season certainly hasn’t lived up to expectations for us Eagles fans. But with the rest of the NFC East also struggling to dominate, the season is far from over. It’s not even that unlikely that an NFC East team could clinch a wildcard spot. The NFC North will probably grab one and that leaves the South and East to fight over the other.

At 3-4 the Eagles must be a pretty big price to win the big one though, right? Wrong! The best price quoted today is just 14/1 for the Vince Lombardi Trophy to finally head to Philly. There are 14 teams in the NFL with a better record than the Eagles but with less of a chance in the post season, according to the bookies. That’s a HUGE vote of confidence in the team and the coaches.

We’re third favourites for the NFC title, almost joint second with New Orleans. Obviously, Green Bay are expected to be crowned champs but we’re hanging in there. The NFC East title looks a cert for Philadelphia too with every bookie I can find making us clear favourites. I wonder how the 5-2 Giants feel about that?!

For me, the next four games will decide our season. If we can win three of them – and the Giants game is a must – then we should be able to win the division.

After that, it’s a case of ‘any given Sunday’…

Cheers from the UK and GO BIRDS!

BYE Week Break – EaglesFanCast 119

So we once again come across the Eagles BYE week, unofficially the mid-point of the Eagles season, despite only being six games in so far.  This is where, historically, fans and analysts (and hopefully coaches) assess the team, what has gone well, what has gone wrong and where things are going. We are no different, and as has been tradition, we invited our friend Jason Brewer from Bleeding Green Nation to join in on the Eagles conversation.  We talk the season so far, the Cowboys game this week, and even dip into the Donovan McNabb pool for a bit.

What we discussed:

  • Eagles grade at the BYE week has to be an ‘F’
  • We talk how the Eagles played against the Redskins
  • The Eagles have three straight Home games coming up against the Dallas Cowboys, Chicago Bears and Arizona Cardinals
  • Sunday Night Football… which Dallas team will show up?
  • The Eagles need to beat Dallas to instill confidence in us
  • Out-think, not out-stink! (quote from Todd)
  • We talk a bit about Terrell Owens and Donovan McNabb
  • Eric Allen and Jim Johnson will be inducted into the Eagles Honor Roll this coming Sunday in a  Halftime ceremony
  • EFC FFL update
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post Glimmer of Eagles Hope – EaglesFanCast 118

The Philadelphia Eagles win their second game of the season, and do it against their NFC East Division rival, the Washington Redskins.  The Eagles Defense morphed this week into a more disciplined and aggressive system, which harassed Redskins’ quarterback Rex Grossman for most of the game, and our newest Safety Kurt Coleman had a career game with three interceptions on the day.  On the other side of the ball, the Eagles Offense put up a very impressive first half, looking more confident, but still struggled in the second half yet prevailed by our Defense to win the game.

This week we have Tommy Lawlor on to celebrate the win.  Tommy’s all over the web now, still writing for PhiladelphiaEagles.com, Scouts Notebook and his Eagles blog, Iggles Blitz.  Also joining Chuck and Tommy is big Eagles fan Steve Malinowski from the blog and podcast, Tailgate 365.  Was a fun time with both.

What we discussed:

  • Eagles get their second win of the season, and this win felt really good
  • Kurt Coleman really shut up any detractors this week with his three interceptions of Rex Grossman
  • We need the Eagles Offense to put together all four quarters
  • The players love coach Andy Reid because he never throws any of them under the bus
  • Team leadership
  • Ronnie Brown is back on the Eagles after a failed trade with the Detroit Lions, after Jerome Harrison failed his physical
  • Eagles go into their BYE week at a good time, then invite the Dallas Cowboys to town
Links:
Blitzing 365:

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post Eagles On The Brink – EaglesFanCast 117

The Philadelphia Eagles find a way to lose again, on the road up in Buffalo against the Bills.  Now the Eagles are 1-4, with many problems ahead of them, and showing very little signs of being able to fix the problems left behind them in the previous four weeks. Fans predominantly blame Defensive Coordinator Juan Castillo and as a result, Head Coach Andy Reid. Now the Eagles are on the brink of a total season failure with a mountain in front of them to overcome for the rest of the season.  This week they play their NFC East Division rival Washington Redskins.  A win there could boost team morale greatly as the team then moves into the BYE week.

One other thing, Philadelphia Eagles football legend Sonny Jurgensen will be recognized by the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company in Wilmington, N.C., on Tuesday, Oct. 18, as part of “Hometown Hall of Famers.”  Please visit the site, Pro Football Hall of Fame for more information about this event.

What we discussed:

  • Eagles lose the fourth straight game, to the Buffalo Bills.
  • Frustration of fans boils over with public displays of anger both online and outside with protests outside the Novacare Complex.
  • There is optimism by fans, one such message we highlighted from a listener Tom’s email to us earlier today.  Please take a look.
  • Eagles fans have not been jumping off the bandwagon, and still support the team, but are calling out the coaches and players to fix the major problems that have developed.
  • Jason Avant calls a players only team meeting today, and it’s about time someone has done it!
  • Late-breaking rumors that the Eagles are in negotiations with the Denver Broncos to trade a 3rd or 4th round pick for Linebacker D.J. Williams. So far there is no credence to this rumor at all, and we don’t expect it to happen.
  • The EFC FFL update
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post A Positive Spin

The following email came in to us yesterday by a listener.  It is too long to read on our show, but it is such a good read that we absolutely wanted to share it with our listeners and readers.  As Eric put it, “It is very thought-provoking and the positive spin on the situation is sorely needed right about now.”  Very well put, and Tom, thank you for your feedback and taking the time to write this, we really appreciate it.

The Eagles had a bad game against the Giants. It was brutal to watch, and the Birds lost by 13. We know we always have tough Divisional games, often splitting the season with our NFC East opponents. (Owen) Schmitt happens.

In each of the other losses, we lost by 1, 4, and 7. Close Games.

Except Atlanta, the 3 teams we lost to have winning records; San Fran and Buffalo are both 4-1! Buffalo even took care of the perennial world-beaters, the New England Patriots (in which game, incidentally, the Bills also picked off Tom Brady 4 times).

It is not inconceivable to think that at the end of the year, Buffalo and the 49ers are making hay in the Playoffs, and everyone expects Atlanta to win their division (especially after watching Tampa get brutalised by the Niners this weekend). What if we look back and realise that not only did we start the season with a whole lot of new blood, and a truncated off-season in which to put them together – but that we also started the season against 4 out of 5 Playoff teams?

Then instead of doom and gloom, we had close games against real contenders.

After getting our brains blown out for most of Sunday’s game – the team visibly turned it around, and started turning it on. For the first time, I saw that determined spark – both offensively and defensively – and the Eagles clawed their way back, making critical stops and marching the ball downfield. It looked GOOD. There were some unbelievable blunders, to be sure (PARKER!!!!!!) – but we almost got it back.

Peel back the red mist of anger, and the bitter taste of another defeat – and there was some hope in the later stages of the game.

The rest of the season, we play a whole slate of teams that also have losing records at this time. Notable exceptions are the New England Patriots, and the teams in our own division: Washington and the Giants have winning records, Dallas is tied at 2-2. Everyone else that we play for the rest of the season has a losing record. Also, our Bye is in two weeks, and we almost never lose during that week.

Week 6 – Washington (3-1): I don’t know if Torrain or Hightower will be the problem, but I do know it WON’T be Rex Grossman. They sit at 3-1, but I don’t buy this team as a contender. I believe we put up too many points for their foot-slogging ground and pound to overcome. We’ll yield a 100-yard rusher, for sure – but as long as the penalties and turnovers get under control, they just can’t stop the Vick-Jackson-Maclin-McCoy-Harbor (!?!) show. WIN. 2-4

Week 7 – Bye: As I said, I can’t see a way we lose this week. I know we make a ton of mistakes, but still. Still 2-4.

Week 8 – Dallas (2-2): I had bruised ribs, and they hurt for almost 6 months. Romo’s got cracked ones that are poking through his lungs? Babin is going to eat his lunch. Andy Reid after a bye never loses. WIN. 3-4.

Week 9 – Chicago (2-3): Did you see the garbage Chicago is putting on the field? That Monday Night game in Detroit was HILARIOUS. Cutler… oh my god, scrambling for his life behind that high-school O-line of his. (Wait, sounds familiar…). Our QB is more of a Wizard than theirs – We’re going to sack him 14 times. Matt Forte vs our entire offense? Oh, and Bears? We’re not on Soldier Field THIS time. WIN. 4-4 (.500, baby!)

By this point, you’ll note that experience plus a bye week has got our team improving week by week, while those teams that were peaking from the get-go – Packers, Detroit, Pats – will start stumbling.

Week 10 – Arizona (1-4): ‘Nuff Said. You’re dead, Kev. Win. BIG. 5-4.

Week 11 – New York Giants (3-2): Angered by the early season loss, the Birds come back and embarrass the Ginas like we always do, splitting the season. WIN. 6-4.

Week 12 – New England Patriots (4-1): Tom Brady and Wes Welker are probably going to break our nice little winning streak here. There is hope, as they are coming to OUR house. Heartbreaker, LOSS. 6-5.

Week 13 – Seattle (2-3): Short week (Thursday game) after a hard game (Pats) and travelling 3000 miles west? Oi vey. Luckily… It’s the Suckhawks. WIN. 7-5.

Week 14 – Miami (0-4): Not only are they terrible, the Fins are even worse at home, and will be well on their way to winning the Suck For Luck sweepstakes. WIN. 8-5.

Week 15 – New York Jets (2-3): We welcome Rex’s big mouth into the Linc. Sanchez is terrible, and they at least have no good runners (Greene and Tomlinson). WIN. 9-5.

Week 16 – Dallas (2-2): Big game, Christmas Eve, in Texas. We usually split… so, LOSE. 9-6.

Week 17 – Washington (3-1): By this point, they’ll have benched Grossman for Beck, and switched back again – the team will have no confidence, a losing record, and will come into our house to be a punching bag. WIN. 10-6.

And that 10-6 record is going to be the best in the NFC East. And by that point, we’ll be peaking at exactly the right time.

Bring it on season, the Birds are ready.

GO EAGLES!!!

Tom Schadle

Phoenix, AZ


post Eagles Dream Team Lost

It’s Friday, and usually we are looking forward to watching the Eagles play in two days. Things have changed.

Now it seems Philadelphia Eagles fans are looking at this game with much trepidation. Andy Reid, when pressed for answers in various press conferences and shows, reacts with impatience and with terse replies, if replying at all.  Sports analysts spell out numerous shortcomings, Eagles bloggers spark discussions on the issues, and the loyal fans scream out their frustration and anger.

Any of the above occurs after any Eagles loss.  But now the Eagles have lost three straight games, at the beginning of a season that essentially promised nothing short of a Super Bowl appearance.  Three losses in a row.  Three games where the Eagles held a lead, and three games where they scored zero points in the 4th Quarter. Among fans, panic has set in, anger, confusion and frustration are flowing, and some are calling this season done already.  The “Dream Team” moniker that started in the shortened pre-season (which I abhorred from the beginning) is now used quite often to mock the Eagles and the fans.

The team still has to play, and as fans we can choose to watch and follow the team that we love.

Are the Eagles done for the year? Is this dream over? Should we go on and write this team off and call publicly for the termination of much of the coaching staff? I, personally, cannot.  I’m a “half glass full” kind of person with everything in my life anyway. I don’t think this Eagles team is over this year.  There is a lot of talent on the team.  The coaches are some of the best in the league. I am confident this team has the heart to turn it around.  I don’t want to think otherwise!  I look forward to football season more than anything else, only to see my Philadelphia Eagles take the field. I love the team, I love the fans, I love the passion that this team inspires everywhere.

I, for one, am not writing this team off yet.  I feel that a turnaround is possible.  I want it to happen. I want the players to dig down and make it happen. The city, the fans everywhere, deserve for it to happen.

I am looking forward to football on Sunday.  I am waiting for the Eagles to line up against the Bills and play their hearts out. I am expecting a WIN for Philadelphia.


post EaglesFanCast 116 – Eagles Crumble

The Philadelphia Eagles lose yet again, this time to the San Francisco 49ers at Lincoln Financial Field.  They blew a 23-3 lead and lost by a score of 23-24, for the third game in a row scoring zero points in the 4th Quarter of the game and allowing their opponent to effectively run their Offense.  The fans’ heartache and frustration were displayed as a good portion of the stadium started chanting “Let’s Go Phil-lies!  Let’s Go Phil-lies!” during the last quarter of the game.  There is blame landing throughout the organization by fans, from the players (Maclin carrying the ball like a loaf of bread and easily getting it knocked loose, Ronnie Brown deciding to pass as he is falling to the ground, and Alex Henery missing two chip shot Field Goals), to the Assistant Coaches like Juan Castillo.  But none are feeling the anger like Head Coach Andy Reid.  Most feel he bears the brunt of the blame, and already some are saying he should be fired for yet another loss and not getting the players and coaches prepared.

What we discussed:

  • Most people are blaming Andy Reid for this loss, but Eric is blaming less Reid, and more on the players mistakes
  • Injuries are now adding up and could hurt the team further
  • Emails, voice mails and feedback on Facebook and Twitter reflect the Eagles fans’ anger
  • The EFC FFL update
Connect and let us know:

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Older Posts

EaglesFanCast 115 – Giant Crash

No More Dream Team Talk (Please)

EaglesFanCast 114 – Eagles Fall to Falcons