Posted on December 16th, 2007 at 6:54 pm by Cheesesteak Hoagie
Though it’s probably just a bump in the road for what is still the best team in the NFC (staring at ground in abject humiliation), it’s never disappointing to beat the Cowboys, especially in Texas Stadium. Some quick bulletpoints about the game this afternoon:
1. B-West man-crush warms the depths of my soul. I really can’t get excited enough about the game-ending run to the 1-yard line by The 36 Chambers of Brian Westbrook. That was an extremely high-I.Q. moment, and is yet another proof point in re: why Brian Westbrook is the best running back who’s played for the Eagles in my short lifetime. I also like that Westbrook got carries in the four-minute offense. And he was up for it.
2. Speaking of the four-minute offense. The completion to Brent Celek on third down with a ton of pressure on McNabb was the play of the game. Without focusing on how big a play that was for Dunavin (more on that in a minute), let us say that it is most certainly an encouraging sign to have a rookie make that kind of play late in the game.
3. There were other rookies who didn’t make big plays. Remember when Westbrook took a play off with a minor knee injury and Tony Hunt entered the game? And promptly watched Demarcus Ware run right past him and drill McNabb? Yeah. That’s why there were all those articles this week about how it’s hard for rookie backs to figure out the pass protection stuff. Ouch.
4. A young defensive front and a veteran secondary looked pretty solid out there. Lots of energy from the Birds’ front seven today. They could have used a few more sacks, but they definitely were able to pressure Romo and did a nice job of putting a bunch of licks on him. I thought Gaither and the tackles were especially strong (which certainly bodes well for the future of the defense). At the same time, this was the best game that the Eagles’ secondary has played all season, and about six orders of magnitude better than the first Cowboys’ game (which was the secondary’s worst game all season).
5. Does Jim Johnson still have it? I begged for this in my pre-game post, but maybe Jim Johnson actually had a clever plan for confusing Romo? It sure looked like the Cowboys had a terrible time getting the ball to their outside receivers and had to settle for Jason Witten all day (which is not a terrible thing for which to settle).
6. Speaking of Dallas’ outside receivers. After watching T.O. gloat about how the Eagles would be watching the playoffs from their couches, it sure was nice to see him have an absolutely terrible game today. Not only did he drop a bunch of balls and fall down on the Dawkins pick, but he also threw a patented tantrum ™ on the bench. It’s a beautiful thing. How many playoff wins has Mr. Owens earned in the past four seasons? Right.
7. No matter what, it’s still all about 5. It’d be nice to enjoy the win — and the strong/ gutty performance of a nimble and confident Donovan McNabb — without speculating on the future of the embattled and embittered Eagles’ quarterback. But alas, Pam Oliver told us that Donovan apparently doesn’t believe a word Joe Banner says and expects to be playing somewhere else next season. Ugh. The drama continues! Expect about five articles about that in tomorrow’s papers. (I’ll resist the urge to fire up WIP on the internets for now.)
Anyhoo, all is right in the universe. I shall toast this victory with the gratuitous consumption of barbecued pork products this evening!
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