What Would Buddy Do?
Eagles - Panthers Slopfest Summary
Posted on August 15th, 2008 at 11:16 am by Cheesesteak Hoagie

it almost looks like jackson might be blocking

While I was certainly thrilled to see some actual live Eagles football, I guess my biggest takeaway from last night’s game was “I am totally psyched that I didn’t pay full price to attend this.”  As if the part where it wasn’t an actual game wasn’t awkward enough, the rain delay added insult to injury.  Enjoy your soaking, we’re going to keep you crowded into the concourse for the next 45 minutes, concession stands will remain open, and you’ll be able to return to your soggy seat shortly.  Don’t worry, you should be home by one. 

Anyhoo, my takeaways (big and little) from last night:  

These guys are small.  Dude!  I knew Lorenzo Booker and DeSean Jackson weren’t the largest of fellows, but they looked freakin’ tiny out there.  Get these boys on the Michael Phelps diet STAT!  Seriously, at that size we can’t pretend that they’re going to make it through the full season upright, can we?  And it isn’t the height thing, it’s the mass issue.  Dude.    

In which we all towel off in re: the capabilities of Max-Jean Gilles.  While we remain hopeful about the progression of Gilles, he played like a very inexperienced guy last night.  The huge whiff on that screen pass block was kind of comical.  It almost happened in slow motion: “Come on, big fella, you’ve got him….OOHHHHHHH!”  Also, the penalties were pretty lame.  I guess better now than later.   

Sure they played well, but the Panthers’ offense looked bad.  The defense certainly looked competent, though the Panthers did the Birds the favor of running into the middle of the line (and avoiding the edge runs which had apparently vexed the defense against the Stillers) and not including Steve Smith in the festivities.  So it’s tough to get too too excited about what we saw on defense.  Also, though I’ve always had a soft spot for Jake Delhomme, I would not feel awesome about the QB situation in Carolina if I was a Panthers fan.  Lito’s pick was especially terrible — total floater.   Maybe it was the conditions, but he did not look sharp.     

Speaking of the defense, get ready for Stew Bradley in coverage.  Tip of the cap to the Panthers for a clever play call on the almost-touchdown to Mush.  They bunched the receivers in the slot and got Bradley on Mush.  Were it not for a vicious, completely out-of-line helmet-on-helmet collision between two veteran guys, we’d be talking a lot about Bradly chasing people in the middle of the field.    

That’s gotta be a fine, right?  After the hideous highlight against the Steelers, I’m glad Dawk got his groove back a little bit.  Still, that shot in the end zone has got to earn him a charitable donation from league HQ.  Too much, Dawk, too much.  We want you to last the whole season.     

An early 2006 vibe with the catching.  We hadn’t seen drops like that in a while.  Sure, it was wet, but a lot of those balls were there.  We can forgive a couple drops from Jackson (though we’d prefer less jumping and fluttering of the feet and more focus on “catching the ball”), but Curtis?  Baskett?  The ball from Kolb that hit Baskett in the f*cking face over the middle was not sweet.  Dunavin certainly wasn’t perfect last night, but a number of those balls should have been caught. 

Who really wanted to make the team last night.  Top of the list is Tony Hunt, who ran well, made a great catch on a poorly thrown screen pass from Kolb, and actually made some plays on special teams.  Adios, Ryan Moats!  Also, I had no idea who Fake Jeremiah Trotter was, but he definitely has to have played himself into practice squad consideration.   McDougle looks like he’s definitely making the team.  This was also the first I’d seen of Joe Mays.  More please. 

Who should feel very cold and lonely this morning.  Sean Considine running with the threes!  Yikes!  Also, as noted, Ryan Moats can probably go month-to-month on his lease at this point.   

And finally, the absolute low point of the game.  So we’d heard a lot about the investment in special teams in the offseason.  The Birds acknowledged the problem and tried to address it.  And, um, well, it doesn’t seem to be working.  Booker struggled to field kickoffs (nightmares of Green Bay running through our head), the fake field goal was completely hideous, and I have officially joined the “David Akers must go before he costs the Birds a divisional game” team.  The Birds are telling us that the coverage was good?  I guess so.  But it sure didn’t seem very organized out there.  I have to imagine that this is a Defcon Four situation at the NovaCare complex this morning. 

Still, it was cool to have football back.  Onwards!

Feeling 13 percent better about Eagles’ chances in NFC
Posted on August 20th, 2007 at 11:09 pm by Cheesesteak Hoagie

Giggle giggleAfter watching first Jake Delhomme and now Rex Grossman in preseason games, I feel at least 13 percent about the Birds in the NFC. Their ineptitude has a chance to cripple two decently strong teams/ potential rivals for the Birds in the NFC.

And that is totally sweet. 

Delhomme looked worse than the night last December when his overwhelming desire to commit silly turnovers jumpstarted the Eagles’ run to the playoffs, and Grossman couldn’t really handle the exchange from center.

At least the Panthers did something about the problem in the offseason by bringing in David Carr; the Bears continue to stand by the Sex Cannon. What can the other players think at this point? Grossman is edging into Chuck Knoblauch territory — he just looks crushed out there. Yikes. And, from the sound of it, this isn’t lost on the Chicago fans, who realize that this dude is going to clown the chances of their otherwise strong team. Oh well!

(This is all great for the Birds. Even if 5 isn’t in there, I still think the Eagles will get more consistency from the QB position than these two teams. Good for us.)

Link:
3 large drops of sweat [Chicago Tribune]