Merry Christmas, Eagles Fans

Posted: December 24th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 96 Comments »

Eagles fans must have been very good little boys and girls in 2013. Santa already dropped off our presents and I have to say that he was very generous.

* We got a great coach in Chip Kelly. I’m sure there are doubters here and there, but Kelly has been great this year and appears to be the real deal. He is an X’s and O’s guru. He knows how to motivate players. And the players seem to like him. Before you think he’s soft, remember that he cost Shady $100,000 back in the offseason, benched DeSean, made Mike Vick fight for his spot and made the defensive guys shift to a 3-4.

* We got a franchise QB in Nick Foles. We can dispute just how good he is. We can discuss whether he’s great or not. We can debate whether he can win a Super Bowl. But the guy leads the NFL in passer rating and is having one of the greatest 10-start statistical stretches in football history. Until otherwise notified, he’s a franchise QB.

* We got a high quality RT in Lane Johnson. He has his rookie moments to be sure, but most of the time the QBs and RBs can know the right side is under control. I think Winston Justice had more problems in one game than Johnson has had in his rookie year.

* We got a functional Safety in Earl Wolff. Is that really a big deal? Macho Harris, Quintin Demps, Jaiquawn Jarrett, CJ Gaddis and everyone else drafted in the last decade say “Yes, it is.”

* The Eagles are a running team. Andy Reid and 70 percent passing is gone. The Eagles run virtually a 50-50 offense and they lead the league in rushing. This is just insane. And awesome.

* Dare I say it…the Eagles have good LBs. Trent Cole now has 8 sacks and has been a terrific run defender all year. Connor Barwin is everything you’d want in a SAM and he might even be a better guy off the field. DeMeco Ryans is the leader of the defense and has even been a playmaker this year (4 sacks, 2 INTs). Mychal Kendricks is still erratic, but he’s coming off his best game and is developing into a playmaker (4 sacks, 2 INTs, 6 TFLs, 1 FF, 4 FRs). Brandon Graham is an effective backup on the outside and Najee Goode shocked everyone with how well he played in his 2 starts.

* The Eagles have a playmaker in the secondary in Brandon Bokin. He is 2nd on the team with 14 pass deflections. He’s got 5 INTs and even 2 FFs. He’s got 4 of those takeaways in the Red Zone. And Boykin is the master of downing punts inside the 10-yard line.

* It sure seems like the Eagles once again have a great set of assistant coaches. This group has done an amazing job of working with veterans, young holdovers, free agents and rookies. They’ve gotten huge contributions from every group. The staff has known how to teach the players. The staff has been creative when needed, but old school tough with some guys. They were slow with Vinny Curry, but that paid off and he’s been a key player.

* We got CBs that will actually tackle. Cary Williams and Bradley Fletcher won’t be mistaken for Ronnie Lott anytime soon, but these guys will hit and tackle. They just combined for a key play on Sunday night when Fletcher stripped the ball from Devin Hester on a KOR and Williams recovered it. Do you think there is any way that Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie could ever strip the ball from a KOR and have Nnamdi recover it?

* Finally…we got a football team that is once again fun to watch. They run the ball. They get more explosive plays from the passing game than ever before. They do smart things. Timeouts aren’t wasted. The previous 2 seasons were filled with Eagles teams that drove me nuts. I flat out like the 2013 Eagles.

Time will tell if Sunday night’s showdown with the Cowboys is a gift from Santa or something much, much worse. I’m optimistic, but don’t want to be cocky so I’ll hold off on that for now.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone.

Tommy

_


  • knighn

    God Bless You, Tommy! Merry Christmas and May you have a Happy, Healthy Eagles New Year!

    • Flyin

      Hope you don’t mind if I add a little…

      Pudding, Babes and PBR are abundant in every direction you look.

      • A Roy

        Funyuns?

  • Noel

    Thanks for all the great work Tommy! Merry Christmas everyone!

  • HipDaDip

    Up there with all the Eagles blessings is Igglesblitz. Thanks, Tommy, and everybody in the community!

  • Westport_Johnny

    Merry Christmas, bro.

  • suthrneagle

    The Iggles Blitz is the gift that keeps on giving

  • P_P_K

    T-Law, we all know you are the head elf for Eagles Claus. Thanks so much for everything. And for the rest of you guys, may your stockings be full of Eagles gear.

  • Flyin

    Tommy, and to all the readers and contributors on this blog…

    Merry Christmas!

  • Jarred Mercado

    Kendricks has the physical abilities but is inconsistent which leads you to believe its a mental issue whether that is an intelligence problem or lack of commitment. I thought the article on the eagles use of computer technology to allow the players to get extra mental reps in was good insight as Kendricks stated (paraphrasing) “I don’t use it as much as others, although I probably should”. I thought this was insightful as you always hear the elite guys taking every step necessary to prepare. If you are underperforming compared to your physical potential you would hope the person is over performing in the class room.

    • GEAGLE

      Stop IT!!!!

      Don’t let your need for instant gratification cloud your judgement . Kendrick is everything we could ask for, he just needs some time to grow. Just because other players have grown into their new roles faster then Kendricks, shouldn’t be a knock on Mykal.

      He is one of the most versatile players on our defense, and one of the guys we ask the most of on a weekly basis..He struggled early n the year, which a rational human being would have expected considering how much new stuff he had to get accustomed to….but if you watch his tape of the past 4 or 5 games he jumps out of the screen…

      This kid is going to be a stud, the ONLY question is when.
      ,,
      By this time next year I’m going to be reminding everyone about how they used to question Kendrick. This is another one of those situations were fans view a player drastically different then our coach does.
      ..
      He is one of our most versatile players who we ask the most of, and who has gotten ZERO continuity since arriving In Philly.
      ..
      His tackling has Improved DRASTICALLY from where it was at the beginning of the year and it’s only going to improve,
      ,,
      We ask him to Spy dangerous QBs like Terrell Pryor

      defending TE’s is the job of the OLB and the safety, yet Mykal is so special that we ask him to run with TE a lot of the time

      he has turned Into an awesome Blitzer. everyone will concern themselves with his two sacks last week, but in reality he was responsible for ATleast 4 sacks. Mykal blowing up the A gap is what opened everything up for Cox and Cole’s twist stunt..two of Coles sacks were a result of Kendrick

      He has also developed a nose for the ball, landing among the league leaders in fumble recoveries

      You can’t switch coaches and schemes and expect it to click right away for every young player..with Coach Minter and Meco, Mykal Kendricks will grow into a high quality versatile weapon for our defense, I KNOW IT!!! He is one of our young players that ii have the least doubts about…

      This time next year, people won’t even remember that they used to question Kendrick….just watch!!

      • Neil

        The key is that Kendricks has been steadily improving even though the improvement has been slow (probably derailed by the system switch, to a greater extent than our other young’uns).

        • GEAGLE

          Yes sir…I have no doubts about him. This time next year people will feel much different about him…he is a very valuable piece to our defense and he is constantly improving,..good kid, he will get where we need him to

      • CrackSammich

        I know it’s kind of your “thing” to spell players names wrong, but you can’t possibly not know how to spell Mychal Kendricks’ name, right?

        http://www.philadelphiaeagles.com/team/roster/Mychal-Kendricks/dd4f344f-c80d-447e-ab95-0dac56710b2f

        • CrackSammich

          Actually, I’m not even sure why I bothered.

    • greenblood0118

      Yeah I thought the same thing when I heard Kendricks say that.

  • Joseph Dubyk

    AMEN!!!! You hit everything on the head and the bottom line is this team is LIKABLE!!!!

  • laeagle

    Couldn’t have said it better myself. Or at least, if I had said it, no one would have listened to me. Thanks for all your hard work this year. You’re the #1 reason why the internet is a fantastic place for Eagles fans.

  • tball_man

    Amen. Its been a beautiful year of revelations. From the coaching search to missing out on Dion jordan to ACL tears abound to 3-5… To all you have mentioned Its been a great year,

  • jshort

    Might have missed a special shout out to three amigos, Jeffery, Don and Howie. They did a great job of landing Chip here. Imagine if Banner got him. Hey Tommy, Merry Christmas, and to everyone who enjoys this site.

  • Ark87

    This team is so much more than I expected it to be at this point. You forgot to mention the D-line, which was no given at the beginning of the year. So young, so talented.
    Merry Christmas Tommy and friends!

  • Ark87

    Weird weird week when my thoughts align with Phil Sheridan:

    “ESPN.com’s six-person panel didn’t overreact to the Philadelphia Eagles’ 54-11trouncing of the Chicago Bears on Sunday night. In fact, the panel didn’t react at all. Maybe they were catching up on “Homeland” or wrapping Christmas presents.” went on to note that neither teams “power ranking” changed.” He went on to note that neither team’s “power ranking” changed.

    Not only that, the only other person in the national media that even noticed was Ashley Fox! http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/10181099/philadelphia-eagles-fire-warning-shot-dallas-cowboys

    This is probably a good thing. A lot of local folks say the pressure is on the birds now that Romo got hurt, I’m not seeing that anywhere but in the Philly media to be honest.

    • Breezy

      My favorite part of the Ashley Fox article: “All season, the eagles had been trying to score 50 points. It was a goal”

    • GEAGLE

      Not sure what you have been watching, but I can’t turn on espn without seeing a FOles or Chip press conference….the one thing that has been bothering me all week is that everyone is now picking us

      • Ark87

        I don’t have TV, it’s funny, go to pretty much any national media’s website, the only thing you will read about ( or hear about on podcasts) is how the bears dropped the ball last week (not that the birds made a statement) and how Dallas will lose next week *because Romo is hurt*, not because we are a worthy playoff team. Nobody is giving this team a chance in the bigger picture. This team won’t be spoiled by national praise this week, cuz it’s all about Romo.

        • GEAGLE

          Nice,,,I’m really pleased to hear that…I swear yesterday you couldn’t batch ESPN without seeing as Sal pal talkin Eagles, or Chip!FOles shady press conference…

          Although you still hear a lot of crap about how we have been getting lucky

          • anon

            Maybe i should watch more ESPN i’ve been waiting on that all year. Tired of them talking about Peyton every single day. ESPN is terrible.

  • OregonDucker

    All Aboard! The Chip Train is leaving the station on Sunday Night Football. All Aboard! Next Stop – The Playoffs.

    Kool-Aid is free, complements of the Eagles TEAM.

    • T_S_O_P

      Do we sing this to the tune of the big Philly hit ‘Love Train’ by the O’Jays?

      • dislikedisqus

        Exactly what popped into my head when I read “Chip Train”.

      • A Roy

        Get on board…

    • GEAGLE

      Merry Xmas brother ducker, but my Xmas comes Sunday night

  • McMVP

    Merry Christmas to you, Tommy. Thank you for the awesome job you do. It is appreciated by many!

    • Flyin

      I can’t believe this hack is getting so much respect… shows what I know.

  • shah8

    I do enjoy the Chip Kelly offense. But then this is a kissing cousin of the triple option, as I’ve remarked before. And I like the triple option, and I root for Georgia Tech in college, so… I’m pretty primed to enjoy this offense.

  • T_S_O_P

    Merry Chrimbo all… Even Dallas fans.

  • ICDogg
  • ICDogg
    • P_P_K

      Our two favorite sayings: Merry Christmas. And, Dallas Sucks.

    • SteveH

      Fuck the Cowboys.

  • Dragon_Eagle

    Happy Holidays to Tommy and everyone. Sunday night can’t get here fast enough.

  • Dragon_Eagle

    NFC East Christmas gifts from Santa Claus. Apparently not everyone was on the “nice” list.

    Washington LolSkins: An offseason in which, again, all LolSkins fans will convince themselves they will be contenders, i.e., an 8-month imaginary hiatus from the Snyder circus.

    New York Giants: Jets aren’t going to the playoffs either.

    Dallas Cowboys: Jon Kitna

    Philadelphia Eagles: “We’re from Philadelphia. We fight.” – Head coach doubles his bank with the fans in 5 seconds of press conference and provides t-shirt, multimedia, and tattoo material for the next decade.

    • A_T_G

      Picturing the tattoo made me smile.

      Picturing it on a drunk guy in an Eagles jersey getting lead away in handcuffs from a battered guy lying next to his crumpled 10-gallon hat made the smile broaden.

  • iceberg584

    ESPN’s Sportsnation poll question this morning is “Which team are you rooting for in Sunday’s Eagles-Cowboys game that will decide the NFC East?” Currently, 71% of the country is pulling for the Eagles (which is tremendously one-sided for a poll like this). The only state with a majority rooting for the Cowboys was Texas, and it’s only a 52/48% difference. Pennsylvania had a 79/21% breakdown in favor of the Eagles, but it wasn’t the state with the most people supporting the Eagles. The answer? Chip Kelly’s Oregon, with 82/18%.

    • Michael Jorden

      That’s pretty wild

      • iceberg584

        Yeah, and it really blows that “America’s Team” bullsh*t right out of the water.

    • A_T_G

      Well, that tells us that if the NFL is rigged, the puppet masters would be stupid to have the ‘Boys win. I expect a few favorable calls coming our way…

      • DJH

        You mean the puppet masters that were orchestrating the niners game? Haha, just kidding, I think… The end of that game was surreal. Maybe too surreal.

    • OregonDucker

      “Oregon with 82/18%” – Yep, we are already on the Chip Train! It’s a WILD ride folks, Get on Board!

  • Michael Jorden

    Wow – between this Christmas list and the Foles stats column, I really feel blessed! Love the Eagles, and very hopeful for this coach and team. Grateful for all of the great coverage we have with Tommy, Shiel, Jimmy and everyone.

  • Corry

    Merry Christmas to all my fellow Eagles fans!

  • GEAGLE

    Merry Xmas…but I still don’t get the Kendricks bashing

  • dislikedisqus

    Kind of a stretch there on Earl Wolff, and I probably would have gone with the Cox/ Thornton /Logan DL instead but all in all it’s a very Merry Christmas the Eagles have given us, and Merry Christmas to you Tommy also.

    • GEAGLE

      Wolff will be an NFL starter,,,the only question is how good.
      ..
      Cary Williams has taken Wolff under his wings, because he sees potential for greatness in Wolff….when we pluck a starting safety out of the 5 round, a position we have been horribly clueless about since Quentin mikell(which was so damn long ago)…we call that a Homerun where I come from..

      Heck, if the NFL did a redraft, Lane Johnson would undoubtably be the number 1 pick in the draft..there are I some flashy rookies at offensive skill positions, but Lane SHOULD be the rookie of the year, even if it’s going to go to Lacy…Lane would easily be drafted ahead of Joekel and Eric THE FRAUD Fisher..

      Is there any doubt that Ertz would be a first round pick and the first TE drafted?

      Benny Logan would probably go in the first round, definitely no late then half way in the second..Sheldon Richardson and Star have earned their draft position, but no doubt that Logan has had a significantly better year than Sharrif Floyd who went in round 1

      Wolff wouldn’t be a first round pick, but he damn sure wouldn’t be a 5th round pick…my guess would be late 2nd-3rd….where do you guys think Wolff would go in a redraft?

      And we still haven’t seen Kruger yet

      • anon

        I give Ertz some credit, he was definitely drops a the beginning of the season, he definitely isn’t a blocker but he’s an ok ball catcher. Probably better since that seems to be the only way Casey can see the field. Casey should be on that jug machine daily, he’d be great for some misdirection in the Dallas games since teams will think he’s only a blocker.

        • BlindChow

          Casey’s not a bad catcher. He had some great catches and scores in Houston.

          • A_T_G

            True, but at bat is a whole other story.

        • bill

          I get the feeling that Chip’s setting up tendency breakers for both Casey and Brad Smith. It’s almost to the point where I’ll be shocked if one of those two *doesn’t* have a big play at a key moment in the next few weeks. Of course, if they keep winning like they did against Chicago, they’re not going to need such plays :)

      • A_T_G

        I think we need to keep the converse of the coaching truism we applied to some of the past picks in mind when we look at this year’s class. Yes, Logan is doing great, but would he be this good on another team? I kind of doubt it. Same with Ertz. If him and Eifert were switched, would the results be switched?

        I am very pleased with this draft as well, but I think my point gives even more reason to be excited going forward. It isn’t that the dice kept coming up 7s and 11s for us, it is that we made solid picks and then got them to perform. There is no reason to expect a regression to the mean, but rather repeatable results.

      • Mitchell

        Speaking of the draft, what is the possibility the Eagles trade down in the first and pick up a second or maybe a third. There is some talent in those rounds for safety and corner

        • GEAGLE

          I think there is a decent chance you see us trade back at some point. If we don’t absolutely love what’s at the top of the board when we pick….if we don’t trade back in round 1, I think we will trade back at some point because we don’t have many pics after round 5 and I’m sure we will try to replenish some…

      • Mitchell

        “Activate Kruger”

        -Elysium

        • GEAGLE

          Lol decent movie

          • Mitchell

            If he plays well at all down the stretch, you’ll probably hear that a lot from me.

      • DJH

        This would be an awesome post for Tommy. A re-draft based on how all the rookies played this year. (Of course coaching and schemes play a role, but that could be factored in.)

      • Cafone

        I like where you are going with this post and I share your optimism, but….

        Yes, there would be doubt that Ertz would be the first TE drafted. He looks like he was a great pick, but it’s not like the first TE drafted has been sucking. Eifert has looked very good playing backup to a TE that is arguably better than Brent Celek. Again, Ertz looks good, but don’t discount Tyler Eifert.

    • Iskar36

      I didn’t want to play the Grinch, so I’m glad someone said it before me, but I agree, Wolff has been a quality player, but to me is still too much of an unknown, especially if the comparisons include Macho Harris and Quintin Demps. Both guys had solid rookie seasons and we were all cautiously optimistic about them, but ultimately got cut in their second year. In fact, considering they both started for most of the year and Wolff has been injured a lot, we probably had more reason to be optimistic about them coming off their rookie season than we are about Wolff so far. Hopefully Wolff’s career takes a drastically different trajectory though.

  • anon

    I thinking we’ll see an Eagles / Chief or Eagles / Broncos re-match. It’ be interesting to see how we’d match up against both teams at the end of the season.

    • Ark87

      What’s weird about this year is that we had a lot of weird stuff happen to get us to 9-6. Key players being hurt when we play certain teams, weather shutting down prolific dome offenses. Maybe we are lucky to be 9-6 right now, but this team as it is right now is more than worthy of the record, imo.

      • OregonDucker

        Once skilled players execute in the Chip system, the Chip football juggernaut is frighteningly good. You got a glimpse last Sunday. Wait until it really roles.

  • scratcherk

    Merry Christmas to you and yours Tommy! Your website is an awesome gift to the rest of us.

  • SteveH

    Merry Xmas everyone, I hope everyone asked Santa for a super bowl championship this year!

  • Bradley Abraham

    Tommy you jerk, how could you forget about Donnie Football!?

    Merry Christmas none the less…

    • ICDogg

      Donnie J’Owns!

  • Cliff

    Thanks for all you do for us, Tommy! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  • A Roy

    Merry Christmas, Tommy (et. al.). Thanks for doing the stellar job you do year round.

  • Always Hopeful

    The Merry Christmas I want to see is Nick Foles pulling a Jeff Garcia from ’06 when he said, “Merry Christmas Philadelphia” (or something like that) after they beat the Cowboys :-)

    If someone can find that clip…I’d love to see it!

    • sprawl

      You want a Foles version of this one?

      http://video.nbcsports.com/player/?id=52908

      • Always Hopeful

        sprawl, that was awesome, good lookin’ out! I forgot about Jeff going all “Ali” on us and philosophizing and rhyming!

        Damn, that was a fun team to watch…I forgot about the beards too! I have a VHS of this game and haven’t seen it in a while.

        Yup, I want a Foles version of THAT!

        Thanks again…Merry Christmas (it’s Christmas until the 6th January…12 days and all)

        • sprawl

          My biggest takeaway was that Jeff talks too much.

          I’m glad Foles makes more succinct statements. The less words you use, the lower your chances of stumbling over yourself, stuttering or committing other unforced errors.

          • Always Hopeful

            Ha, ha…I was cool with Jeff, but I hear you. Foles is refreshing to hear. Lot’s of things to like about him. He can keep it short and sweet and say “Merry Christmas Philly” and I’ll be happy :-)

            Let’s get ‘em Birds!

  • ICDogg
    • Cafone

      I had to click on each of those tweets to see them even though Disqus left the space for each one of them which was kind of annoying but, that said, I think he raises a good point. It’s not really worth trying to quantify missing Romo vs. missing Lee, but I agree that no Sean Lee is a huge advantage for the Birds.

      • ICDogg

        A refresh will generally take care of that Disqus issue.

  • Scott J

    Merry Christmas Tommy!

  • Cafone

    Happy Holidays everyone!

    To all Christians, Merry Christmas!

    To all non-Christians, how about you do some damn lobbying and get us some federal holidays for your God of choice? I don’t care if it’s Vishnu, Buddha, Xenu, Mohammed or the damned flying Spaghetti Monster. We have the fewest paid holidays of any of the world’s affluent democracies and we need some more damn days off. If we get a day off for Jesus’ birthday there’s no reason we can’t get days off for any of the other equally wacky belief systems out there!

  • Cafone

    We all know that Dallas’ defense is on pace to be one of the worst defenses in NFL history. A question to ponder: how much worse would their averages be if they hadn’t gotten to face Nick Foles in week 7?

  • Jamie Parker

    The last 4 Eagles head coaches prior to Chip Kelly all beat the Cowboys in their first season. Buddy Ryan won 23-21, Kotite won 24-0, Ray Rhodes won 20-17 in the 4th and 1 game, and Andy Reid won 13-10 and was his first win as a head coach. Can Kelly become the 5th?

  • ICDogg
    • Tumtum

      Chip is really making Nick into a point guard, isn’t he?

      • Always Hopeful

        Point Forward…Paul Pressey from Donnie Nelson’s Bucks?

    • A_T_G

      Watching that play, I think Avant was the third option for Foles. It looks like the line is pass blocking, so McCoy was probably just a play action and not a read, but Jackson looks like he was a true option, then Riley releasing deep, then Avant.

      Talk about putting defensive players in conflict. This is great stuff, and fantastic, quick decision making.

    • http://www.aceandson.com/blog Richard O’Connor

      I think we were all amazed to see Avant pick up a few YAC too. Foles makes the man.

  • GermanEagle

    Frohe Weihnachten!

    • A Roy

      glückliches neues jahr

  • eagleyankfan

    Let’s create some chaos by beating Dallas. Let’s no worry about who is playing or who might not play — plan to kick ass no matter who is in front of you.