Date Posted: October 15, 2011
Print Edition: October 12, 2011
If there was a trophy awarded to the biggest spenders in offseason acquisitions, the Philadelphia Eagles would win by a long shot. Following a summer where the Eagles bolstered their defence by signing superstar free agents such as DB Nnamdi Asomugha and DE Jason Babin, the Eagles were the frontrunners as Super Bowl favourites by many before any football was played. Furthermore, backup quarterback Vince Young even went on to declare the team as the “dream team.” Expectations were set high for starting quarterback Michael Vick and returning offensive threats DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin.
However, the Eagles have been everything but a winning football team. Through five games, Michael Vick has only thrown for eight touchdowns and an astounding seven interceptions. The Eagles defence, which has to have been one of the most overly hyped and talked about story coming into the season, has struggled immensely in stopping their opponents from running up the score. The Eagles have allowed teams to score an average of 28 points per game and produce an average of 350 yards of total offence per game. So, with a quarterback who opts to run instead of stay in the pocket, with poor decision making and a defence which does everything but defend, what do you get? A frustrated Eagles team with a record of 1-4.
This past Sunday was one of the worst outings for the Philadelphia team who visited the Bills for an out-of-conference matchup. Despite Vick throwing for 315 yards and rushing for 90 yards, he also gave up four interceptions – which was the difference maker in an otherwise close game. Of those four interceptions, one was returned by Bills LB Nick Barnett for a touchdown. Barnett had a second interception with a little less than two minutes remaining in the game, solidifying the victory for the Bills team, who have now advanced to a shocking record of 4-1. Bills running back Fred Jackson had a monster game for the Bills, running all over the Eagles defence for a total of 196 yards from scrimmage.
The Eagles haven’t witnessed this bad of a start to a season since head coach Andy Reid’s first season in Philadelphia, a little more than a decade ago. Following the game, Reid made a short comment about having nobody but themselves to blame and left the podium immediately. After falling to 1-4 on the season, many are wondering if this once Super Bowl favourite team will even make the playoffs at all. Several analysts across the continent are speculating that Andy Reid’s time with the Eagles may be coming to an end shortly. The Eagles are off to Washington next week hoping to bounce back against the Redskins.
In other news: The Oakland Raiders defence stepped up big time following the recent death of NFL icon and founder of The Oakland Raiders Al Davis. Davis, a monumental figure for decades all across the League, passed away Saturday. Davis always believed in a defence-first philosophy no matter what head coach he chose to lead his Raiders. Richard Seymour stepped up big time on Sunday with a couple key sacks, and Michael Huff picked off a Matt Schuab pass in the end-zone, which sealed the win for the Raiders. It was a fitting way to honour the passing of their legendary owner.