Super Bowl Sunday

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 80 Comments »

The 2013 season is coming to an end. All that remains is the Super Bowl, where my beloved Seahawks will take on my beloved Broncos. I think I’ve been an Eagles fan long enough. I can’t wait to jump on the bandwagon of my new team tonight at 1030pm.

If only life were that easy, right?

For, I wrote about some lessons the Eagles can take from the two Super Bowl teams. It’s kind of a beaten topic to do pieces like this, but I can’t help it. I’m trying to make the Super Bowl relevant to the Eagles. That’s how my mind works. Clearly I need to seek professional help.

I do wonder what goes through Chip Kelly’s mind as he watches the big game. Is he focused on X’s and O’s? Does he study the specific players? Is he mostly thinking about the coaches and what they’re doing?

I’m sure Howie Roseman has studied the Seahawks and Broncos to see if there are takeaway lessons for the Eagles. That’s kinda how I approached the topic.

Feel free to add thoughts of your own, as long as they don’t involve Earl Thomas.

* * * * *

As far as the game, I’m predicting a Seattle win. I’m not pulling for either team strongly. I think I would rather have Denver win, but I see this game as Pete Carroll vs Peyton Manning and I’m not in love with either of them.

Part of my thinking is that Manning can struggle when defenses are physical with his receivers. Seattle can be physical and cover tightly. I also wonder if the pressure will get to Peyton.

There is a strong argument to be made for Denver. Their offense is historically special. That’s not to be taken lightly. And Russell Wilson has been pedestrian for the past 5 games.

Who are you guys pulling for?

* * * * *

Need something to watch for a few minutes? Here is video of DE Brent Urban, who could be an Eagles target.

* * * * *

If you want pure entertainment, here is the best Super Bowl preview ever. This is a Madden simulation, but with a serious twist. The guy set up one team to be great and the other to be awful. The results are glorious. Make sure to watch the video at the end to see highlights of the other games he did from the season.

Breaking Madden


80 Comments on “Super Bowl Sunday”

  1. 1 tball_man said at 2:35 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Peyton shredding that D would be highly delightful. Wilson seems like a pretty stand up guy, but is there anyone else to root for. Okung from Catholic-guilt standpoint after TC’s hip toss last year. Seahwaks are devoid of rootable players. And no EThomas rooting either. Sour grapes I guess.

  2. 2 Alex Karklins said at 3:30 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    I’m a bigger fan of great defense than great offense, so I’m leaning toward a Seattle win. I don’t think we’ll see Broncos receivers getting free releases of the LOS, which will certainly throw of Manning’s timing. I should probably keep my opinions to myself during the game, however, since I’m watching it here in Denver with a bunch of Broncos fans. Hoping for an epic battle that comes down to the last play.

  3. 3 nathalie a said at 3:48 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    i don’t like any of these teams but peyton manning i can’t seem to really hate; so i’ll lean towards broncos just a little bit. right now i’m much more preoccupied by the fact that i could only log on to disqus via internet explorer, oh vade retro satanas, and of course by the untimely death of philip Seymour hoffman.
    happy superbowl, tommy.

  4. 4 OregonDucker said at 3:54 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    While I do not like Pete Carroll, he is using many of Chip’s concepts on offense which he gleaned from several meetings with Chip. Also, since I live in the Northwest and believe Defense wins championships, I gotta go with Seattle.

    I expect Denver to be “surprised” by the physical play of Seattle. And I expect Manning to run for his life a lot in this game. I will not be surprised if Manning does not play the whole game. Look for lots of fights and injuries as this game will be intense.

  5. 5 Weapon Y said at 4:00 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    The Eagles Super Bowl hopes will depend on some young up-and-coming players stepping up their game. Fletcher Cox and Mychal Kendricks definitely come to mind. They are the two most important guys this offseason. This defense needs stars, and those two guys could be stars. Those two guys were drafted because their potential is through the roof. We saw flashes this year, but not consistent greatness. Bennie Logan will be very important as well, considering the huge importance of the nose tackle position in stuffing the run. I don’t want a repeat of last year’s Saints playoff loss. I’d be surprised if Thornton made a huge stride in his game (I think he is playing up to his very good potential), but if he did, that would obviously be awesome. The secondary needs to not crap all over the bed. I’m guessing Sconce and Fletcher return as starters, and we need them to avoid crappy outings (i.e. Cary vs. SD, Both vs. Denver, Fletcher vs. Minnesota). If they play like they did in other games, that should be enough. On the offensive side, it will count on Nick Foles to maintain the greatness he showed last year. As long as he isn’t a one-year wonder, and I don’t think he will be, the offense will do very well. Then, luck plays a role too. If the OL, Foles, Shady, DJax, Ertz, Celek, Maclin and/or Cooper (if they come back) stay healthy, the offense will do even better next year. If everything breaks right, I honestly believe this team will be Super Bowl bound. Caution: Not saying that the likelihood of everything breaking right is sky high.

  6. 6 Maggie said at 4:16 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Perhaps Howie and Chip will also be checking out a few Free Agents.

  7. 7 ACViking said at 4:17 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Tommy –

    Thanks for the nice words in your last post (re: Claude Humphrey’s history with the Birds).

  8. 8 TommyLawlor said at 4:56 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Thank you for all the history lessons, my friend. You are a gift to new and young Eagles fans.

  9. 9 Anders said at 4:21 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Not super bowl related but how in the world is wade philips not a dc for any team? I’m all for giving young guys opportunity but that is over crappy rejects not one of the best DCs in the last 3 decades.

    I honestly wouldn’t mind him as a consultant even tho he is 1 gap where we are 2 gap as base

  10. 10 ACViking said at 4:45 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Love the consultant idea.

  11. 11 ACViking said at 4:41 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Re: Seahawks’ Patient Development


    Your piece is a fantastic tutorial on building a winner, particularly Seattle — some good scouting provides the grist for good coaching, and mix in some very smart FA choices and trades that fit four-square with your philosophy.

    Seattle’s development, maybe because of its very physical defense, reminds of the great Steelers teams of the ’70s.

    Noll took over a disaster of a team in ’69. Took them from 1-13 to 5-9 to 6-8 . . . and then to 9 straight playoffs, including 4 SB titles.

    Piece by piece, in a couple of key early drafts, Noll and Steelers’ personnel director Dick Haley built a dynasty we’ll never see now. Central to their philosophy in constructing the defense was finding big, physical DBs — and tall D-linemen. (Sound familiar?) Offensively, it was athletic O-linemen. LBs? Long and rangy — not Butkus-sized at all. (Familiar sounding still, eh?)

    Seattle’s built the kind of D-backfield that would make Mel Blount proud. Seems so important now in the pass-happy NFL.

    No way Seattle has a 9-year run, I think. Can’t pay everyone. But block by block, that team found players to fit a philosophy about size and scheme.

    Sounds like what Kelly wants. He’ll get there — with some preparation meeting opportunity!!!

  12. 12 Maggie said at 12:42 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    So nice to see someone else who remembers. Last Christmas my daughter gave me a DVD collection of NFL Films all about the 70’s Steelers. Best gift I’ve had in years. Well, except for an Eagles jersey a couple of years ago.

  13. 13 Greg said at 4:52 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    But more importantly Tommy, which team do you have winning Puppy Bowl?

  14. 14 A_T_G said at 4:55 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    I prefer watching a good defense to a good offense, but I have to support the Broncos tonight, just to, hopefully, put the final nail in the Eli-is-better-than-Peyton meme.

    Now, Eli was certainly hammering away at it this year, but still.

  15. 15 TommyLawlor said at 4:56 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Eli had a hammer in each hand.

  16. 16 OregonDucker said at 5:23 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Yep, the coffin is built!

  17. 17 mtn_green said at 5:39 PM on February 2nd, 2014:


    Denver really shows the wrong way to make a team, building team around high priced free agent. I’m still a sucker for an underdog team.

  18. 18 Insomniac said at 5:57 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    I want Denver to win just because I want to see the Brady vs Manning debates if they win. Those are always fun.

  19. 19 GEAGLE said at 7:11 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Skip Bayless will be in all his glory

  20. 20 Crus57 said at 6:34 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Good grief.

  21. 21 Insomniac said at 6:41 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Uhhh…sooo I want a big disruptive NT like Knighton.

  22. 22 GEAGLE said at 7:10 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Uhhhh…Bennie Logan is SOOO the starter of the future 🙂

  23. 23 Anders said at 3:21 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Knighton isnt a NT, but a DT.
    Also this is his first very good year, Logan actually played really well for a rookie NT.

  24. 24 Insomniac said at 3:52 PM on February 3rd, 2014:

    He lined up as the NT in nickle packages and can take on double teams pretty well. Close enough right?

  25. 25 Anders said at 3:27 AM on February 4th, 2014:

    my point was more that Knighton wasnt all that special before the 2 out of 3 play off games and it took him some years to get here. Even Poe wasnt a good NT his rookie year and took off this year (before he flat lined down the stretch)

  26. 26 GEAGLE said at 7:09 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Amazing how much better Denver’s defense has been late in the year. Phillips has sacks but his pressure percentage sucks. They lost Von Miller, Champ is old and can be picked on, but they are making it work and played much better these past 5 games…but I’m a defensive guy so ii have to go with Seattle, although it will sting to see a young Qb win before FOles Boogie (needs a new nickname after pro bowl MVP)

  27. 27 Insomniac said at 7:12 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Knowshon sucks.

  28. 28 Corry said at 7:38 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Woooooooooooow Knowshon made no effort for that ball at all. He does suck.

  29. 29 NinjaP said at 7:42 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    If this game shows us anything, we need to add to the defense this offseason.

  30. 30 Dragon_Eagle said at 7:56 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Peyton is doing a great impression of Eli today.

  31. 31 Crus57 said at 7:57 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    To be fair, his OL is doing an impression of the 2012 Eagles OL.

  32. 32 Erik Richardson said at 10:49 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Peyton did a great impression of Peyton Manning in the playoffs and AFCCG or SB. This game is par for the course for him.

  33. 33 Scott J said at 8:00 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Gotta root for Seattle. If they win, next year they’ll stink.

  34. 34 shah8 said at 8:02 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Arm strength matters. Mobility matters. If you don’t got ’em, you’re dependent on extra performance from the other players. Kaepernick played an awesome game in the NFC championship. You *had* to play an awesome game to win against this defense, or the chance at winning. So did Russel Wilson.

  35. 35 Sean said at 9:06 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Whaaaattt??!??! This is a shocking development. You think arm strength and mobility are important? Why haven’t you mentioned this before???

  36. 36 A Roy said at 10:01 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    You heard it here first. In football, unlike sports such as chess or bridge, it’s actually better to be fast and strong than slow and weak. Whoda thunk it?

  37. 37 anon said at 12:46 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Peyton did a great job as a statue against that pass rush.

  38. 38 xeynon said at 9:09 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Stop it. Kaepernick ran around like a madman in the NFC championship game, but as a passer he was mostly mediocre with moments of absolute suckitude. He did NOT play an “awesome” game in any way, shape, or form.

    I have a feeling that however this game played out you would have found a way to argue that it proves your pet theories about quarterbacking in the NFL. We ALL know what you think at this point. No reason to repeat yourself unless you have something new to say.

  39. 39 shah8 said at 10:02 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Well, Kaepernick had the chance for the winning toss.

    All Peyton got was a dignified score…

  40. 40 xeynon said at 10:11 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Kaepernick also had a defense, running game, special teams, and offensive line that did SOMETHING to back him up. I’m not sure I follow your logic though. Manning played pretty poorly tonight. How does that refute the assertion that Kaepernick also played poorly two weeks ago?

  41. 41 shah8 said at 10:13 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Oh, but it amuses me so to utter that “uh, huh”.

    Let this game haunt you with little whispers about what it *really* takes to win it all.

  42. 42 ceteris_paribus1776 said at 10:22 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    A safety, SP TD, 4 forced turnovers and a defensive TD? Joe Webb could win a Super Bowl with a TEAM effort like that

  43. 43 xeynon said at 10:32 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    To win a Super Bowl, a quarterback can’t be just some journeyman. He has to have talent. All-time quarterbacking greats Trent Dilfer, Brad Johnson, Jeff Hostetler, Mark Rypien, and Doug Williams are in unanimous agreement.

  44. 44 Maggie said at 12:45 AM on February 3rd, 2014:


  45. 45 anon said at 12:45 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    manning didn’t have a chance. If you’re a pocket passer without a line you have NO chance. If you’re a scrambling QB w/out a line maybe you can make a play to keep the D honest.

  46. 46 Weapon Y said at 9:53 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    So, on that basis, Terrelle Pryor is better than Peyton Manning, right?

  47. 47 D3Center said at 9:58 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    I think you mean Joe Webb, the guy so good he got moved to WR

  48. 48 shah8 said at 10:05 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    In Joe Webb’s worst game, with no prep beyond one week, he played better than Peyton Manning in the Super Bowl, in terms of the number of scores.

    And frankly, I suspect if you had put Joe Webb in for Peyton, he’d have managed more than just the one score (that is, including the two-pointer).

  49. 49 xeynon said at 10:28 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Joe Webb got to play in a playoff game a few years back. He could barely manage to complete a pass, much less put up any points. The reason he’s been unable to get on to the field as a quarterback for a team that’s employed such luminaries as Tarvaris Jackson, Matt Cassel, and Christian Ponder at quarterback in recent years is that he sucks at playing quarterback. Your inability to recognize this while at the same time claiming to be an expert on quarterback play was comedy gold at first, but has gotten a bit stale of late.

  50. 50 A_T_G said at 10:51 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Didn’t you hear? It’s a conspiracy, man!

  51. 51 xeynon said at 12:31 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    I know… for some reason I find myself unable to refrain from feeding this particular troll at times.

  52. 52 shah8 said at 11:39 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    But you know, it’s Tarvaris Jackson that got to throw a pass attempt in helping to win a Super Bowl. Not Ponder, not Cassel. Because you know? It’s Jackson who’s earned the respect to be with a team that was likely to go deep into the postseason.

    Now, perhaps you might want to stop laying into my plush toy Joe Webb, and maybe just…you know…look at the game with fresh eyes. Quarterbacks aren’t movie stars, no matter how much you desperately want them to be movie stars. They’re not movie stars no matter how much you pretend the QB you like is God and the QB you hate is a bum. Now, I know you won’t take the advice, but seriously, you’re butthurt over the implications, and I know you’re butthurt, and people can see you being butthurt. I’m indulging in just a dash of sadism here.

    This isn’t to say that Peyton Manning isn’t a great QB–the numbers sez he was good this year! However, you can look at all those fluttering passes, look at how slow he actually is these days, think about how fragile he must be…Then watch the NFC championship game and see Operation Barbarossa, then Bagration, then Kursk, and Mars, and it’s like, Peyton isn’t really that likely to be as free from pressure as he had been. Peyton wasn’t going to get the open looks, and he certainly wasn’t going to get YAC. Again, Kaepernick had to play out of his mind, all dang game in order to give his team a chance to win. So did Russel Wilson. And it took a pass just a little bit less perfect than it had to be, for a great defensive play to end the game.

    So go ahead, shit on the guys you don’t like. Tells everyone more about you, rather than what you reveal about the world. Tarvaris Jackson is still sipping that bubbly.

  53. 53 xeynon said at 12:27 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    To quote The Big Lebowski, what in God’s holy name are you blabbering about? Butthurt that somebody doesn’t agree with my evaluation of QB talent? Projecting much?

    I’m not and have never been a Manning fanboy, and do think that his arm strength has declined to the point that it’s sometimes a liability on the field. Just like Colin Kaepernick’s occasionally facepalm-inducing decision making is. All quarterbacks have weaknesses. Your problem is that you seem to think that the only shortcomings that count are physical ones, and you completely ignore the intellectual and psychological aspects of the game. This isn’t a difference of opinion. There are literally thousands of data points at this point that demonstrate that you are wrong. The league’s draft records are littered with busts like JaMarcus Russell and Ryan Leaf, guys with perfect bodies who could throw throw the ball through a brick wall, but who proved not to be very good at playing football. Meanwhile the league’s passing records are littered with the names of players like Montana, Moon, Warner, and Brees, guys who made up for the fact that they were less-than-overwhelming physical specimens by being incredibly cerebral, or cool under pressure, or skilled, or whatever.

    Colin Kaepernick is a top 10 quarterback, but that’s not just because he’s big and fast. It’s also because he can throw the ball accurately and with touch, and despite his sometimes erratic decision making generally does a good job of running an NFL offense. Tarvaris Jackson and Joe Webb are not good quarterbacks. I’m not saying that because I have anything against them personally, I’m saying that because at this point it’s basically a demonstrated fact. They have NFL track records. Their physical measureables are totally irrelevant at this point, because they don’t translate to good production on the field.

  54. 54 Sean said at 12:41 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    I have no idea what any of this is supposed to mean. I know I’m not alone in that.

  55. 55 Maggie said at 12:46 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    I have to ask, who is Joe Webb?

  56. 56 Sean said at 12:43 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Can I ask what your background is that you have such unparalleled insights into QB play? You clearly see the game on a level beyond anyone else does.

  57. 57 D3Center said at 8:33 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Apparently Denver didn’t watch the Eagles game against the Vikings…

  58. 58 Dragon_Eagle said at 8:33 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    A Seattle blowout was the furthest from my expectations.

  59. 59 shah8 said at 10:02 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Actually, I thought the chances were okay for a Sea blowout. Did think the game would be much closer.

  60. 60 GreenBleedin said at 8:46 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Tommy, that link to Madden is freaky. I don”t think the Seahawks will get to 255 points but this blowout was “predicted” in that link.

  61. 61 anon said at 9:02 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Wonder if Howie is re thinking offense first — thoughts geagle??

  62. 62 Anders said at 3:34 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    What about Indy in 2006, 2007 Giants, 2008 Steelers, 2009 Saints, 2010 Packers, 2011 Giants or 2012 Ravens?
    All those won with average to elite offenses, but none of them had a dominating defense, they just had defense there could apply pressure and force some turnovers.
    We was already 2nd in the NFL (only behind Seattle) in takeaways and 3rd in takeways differential (2nd in giveaways) .
    The top 5 is Seattle, Niners, Eagles, Panthers, Bucs. All but one of those was play off team and the Bucs might be a good bet to a great turn around next season based on things like point differential and turnover margin.

    That is a winning strategy, get takeaways on defense and do not turn it over on offense

  63. 63 Insomniac said at 9:44 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Defense or offense now?

  64. 64 A_T_G said at 9:47 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    AND is better.

  65. 65 Anders said at 3:28 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    both imo.
    We need to get younger on OL and better depth at WR.
    On defense, front seven first, with focus on LBs then safety and lastly CBs.

  66. 66 A Roy said at 10:05 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    So, who won the puppy bowl? I have to admit it was good listening to highlights of the previous bowls and hearing Harry the K’s voice.

  67. 67 teltschikfakeout88 said at 10:13 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Philly, Arizona, Carolina, Atlanta, Detroit and Minnesota….what do they all have in common????

  68. 68 A_T_G said at 10:49 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    They all end in an a, except Detroit, that ended in a recession.

  69. 69 RobNE said at 10:50 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Name 6 cities that have never been in my kitchen

  70. 70 Anders said at 3:27 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    NFC teams without a super bowl?

  71. 71 teltschikfakeout88 said at 8:19 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Winner winner chicken wing dinner…..Correct…anders….Tommy will be sending you new set of steak knives shortly….of this teams Detroit is the only NFC team to not get to the big game….sigh….I hope to live to see the eagles win it….

  72. 72 Dave said at 10:36 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    After watching the game tonight, its pretty obvious Eric Decker is the #3 option for Denver (Thomas and Welker), maybe #4 behind TE Julius Thomas too. Anyone who thinks the is a huge upgrade over Cooper should remember this game.

  73. 73 xeynon said at 10:41 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Decker’s likely to get big money in free agency. I can’t see the Eagles spending big money at that position, whether for Cooper or anybody else.

  74. 74 anon said at 12:35 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Decker is close enough to cooper that upgrade not worth it. Decker is legit, he just doesnt have the size and speed of the Thomas’ though hopefully he holds on to the ball better…

  75. 75 Anders said at 3:27 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Decker and Cooper is the same player, one is just long haired and racist, the other just played 2 seasons with maybe the G.O.A.T at QB

  76. 76 xeynon said at 10:40 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    Nice to see that DRC brought his softness and tackling ineptitude with him from Philly to Denver. I would’ve hated to see that guy get a Super Bowl ring when guys like Dawkins played their entire career without getting one.

  77. 77 RobNE said at 11:44 PM on February 2nd, 2014:

    I pointed him out to my friend on a few of the early plays where 1) the DE on that side didn’t keep containment and 2) DRC wanted nothing to do with getting off his block and making the tackle.

    I generally thought a lot of the Broncos were just off, or surprised. The WR who was waiting for the ball to come down is still waiting while the Seahawks DB goes up, picks it off and runs it back.

  78. 78 anon said at 12:41 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    Seattle’s pass rush won the game. Denver’s line was outmatched from the start. They got to Peyton over and over, accounted for half of Seattle’s points.

    One thing about Seattle, they paid for pass rushers, some hurt, they paid for harvin, hurt all year, but all of those guys came up big in the only game that matters.

    Honestly as a GM it would make me consider getting much better on defense. #1 D vs #1 O, D wins 4 of 5? Defense has won the last 3 SBs — more than D specifically, it’s pass rush. I thought Peyton could beat pass rush as he had been all year, but even on short routes he had little time.

    Amazing performance from Seattle top to bottom. It was funny watching Jon Fox get interviewed you gotta wonder when was the last time he actually coached a game.

    I feel sorry for Peyton.

  79. 79 Maggie said at 12:51 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    I also couldn’t believe some of the terrible “tackling” by so many of the Denver defensive players.

  80. 80 Anders said at 3:25 AM on February 3rd, 2014:

    100% the Seattle pass rush was the reason they annihalited them. If a QB has time, he will shred in pass defense.
    This is why I really wants to upgrade Meco in terms of blitzing and Cole in terms of just speed around the edge.
    If you can get pass rush with simple 4 man rush or 5 man blitz, you can actually play very vanilla on the backend, with just 2 simple coverages.