Should Win and Must win

Posted: December 20th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 16 Comments »

Can the Skins beat the Eagles today? Yes, absolutely.

While Washington is 3-11 and on a 6-game losing streak…while they are very beaten up and missing key players…while they are an ongoing QB shuffle…this is a division game and that means anything is possible.

Banged up? Yes, but the Skins still have some good pieces. RG3 is not a consistent, efficient QB, but he is still a dynamic athlete with a great arm. He can create big plays with his arm and legs. Alfred Morris is still a tough, downhill runner. Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson are a talented duo of WRs. The offense is 12th in the NFL in yards.

There is one huge problem…blocking. The Skins have allowed 53 sacks, which is second in the NFL. RG3 went down 7 times last week. There is uncertainty as to who will be on the field today.

Meantime, left tackle Trent Williams (strained right shoulder) has been listed as questionable. Williams suffered the injury late in the third quarter of last Sunday’s loss to the Giants. He had yet to regain full strength in the shoulder as of Thursday afternoon, but he remained hopeful that he could play Saturday.

If Williams can’t play, Tom Compton would start at left tackle (moving from his starting spot at right tackle), and Tyler Polumbus would step in at right tackle.

The Eagles should be able to get pressure on a regular basis today. RG3 will use his mobility to escape some sacks, but he’ll also run into others. And if he holds the ball in search of big plays, that could lead to more hits.

The Eagles front seven must play well. They don’t need 7 sacks or whatever, but they must keep enough pressure on RG3 that he can’t get comfortable and into any kind of passing rhythm.

DeSean’s speed will be a big test for the Eagles. Neither CB has the speed to run with him so whoever is at FS will be parked 25 yards down the field. And that player has to stay deep to keep DeSean from getting behind him. There was a blown coverage in the first meeting. I’m hoping that doesn’t happen today, but it is hard to have much confidence in this secondary.

This game will be an interesting test for the Eagles. In the last 11 games, Washington has scored more than 20 points just twice (26 vs MIN, 27 vs IND). If this team puts up 28 or 31 or 34, that’s going to look pretty freakin’ bad.

The Skins defense is odd. They are 10th in yards allowed, which looks pretty impressive. But they are 28th in points allowed. Not so good. They only have 5 INTs all year. Not so good. They allow 5.7 yards per play. Not so good (Eagles at 5.3). Opposing QBs have a rating of 109.9 against them. That’s flat out dreadful. Even the 2012 Eagles can’t believe that.

If you take out the one game where WAS just dominated the Jags (only 148 yards), the Skins would drop down to 19th in yards allowed, which sounds a lot more like how the defense is playing this year.

It is hard to look back to the first meeting for clues on this game. That was Nick Foles and a banged up OL. The Skins had Keenan Robinson, Brian Orakpo, Brandon Meriweather and Jason Hatcher. The Eagles scored 34 points in that game. Chip Kelly’s offense put up 33 and 24 points in wins last year. The Eagles offense works vs Jim Haslett’s scheme, WAS’s talent or both.

The Eagles are way down in plays run in the last 2 weeks. Kelly has to be desperate to see his offense run 65 or 70 plays and show some consistency. Mark Sanchez won’t have the pressure of facing the Seattle defense or competing with the Dallas offense so that will help him out. However, he’s got the pressure of a must-win game. We’ll see how that affects him.

Jordan Matthews was big in the first game, but he’s been shut down the last 2 weeks. Sanchez might try to get him going early. You can bet all the Eagles WRs would like to make a play with DeSean Jackson looking on. There is a rivalry there, which might or might not be friendly. Huff and Mac delivered big plays last week. Riley Cooper has been quiet for a while now. I’m sure Matthews is itching to get back to being productive.

Can the Eagles limit turnovers? They only had one in the first game, a Darren Sproles fumble that seems like it happened years ago. I don’t think the Skins win this game unless the Eagles help them with turnovers and other mistakes.

The playoffs start today for the Eagles. Let’s end that 2-game losing streak and see them put a W on the board.

* * * * *

Tim McManus wrote a great story on Chip Kelly and a tragedy that changed his life. Really good stuff. Make sure you read that. Sometimes we need a bit of perspective in our lives.

* * * * *

If you need something to listen to today…I’ve got a couple of things for you.

I also did a show with the EaglesFanCast guys.

Jimmy and I will be doing our show every week. EFC has a variety of guests on their show. I just happened to be on this time around.


16 Comments on “Should Win and Must win”

  1. 1 SteveH said at 1:10 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Woot! welcome back Tommy and Jimmy! Like greeting an old friend at the airport.

    “Riley Cooper has been quiet for a while now.”

    Maybe he’s like old yeller, he just needs Chip to take him out back with the shotgun…

  2. 2 SteveH said at 1:13 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    And, despite the risk of dominating the early part of the comments here, is anyone else COMPLETELY thrown off their schedule with the Eagles playing today? It doesn’t feel right.

  3. 3 mtn_green said at 1:49 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Earlier is better.

  4. 4 Henly125 said at 3:05 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    The one Saturday I have to come in to work is when we play a Saturday game.

    Just my luck.

  5. 5 Chris_Tomlinson116 said at 1:27 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Will you guys be putting Inside the Eagles on Pocketcasts? Couldn’t seem to find it there.

  6. 6 Anders said at 1:32 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Any reason you want that? you can download from soundcloud

  7. 7 Chris_Tomlinson116 said at 1:41 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    This wouldn’t be an issue if I didn’t live in the one place in NJ that requires satellite internet and makes me have a data limit. I get bonus data between the hours of 2am-8am so I download all my podcasts in the morning right before work through pocketcasts. All my subscribed podcasts automatically appear when there’s a new show so I never have to worry about missing any.

  8. 8 TommyLawlor said at 3:06 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Chris, I will look into this.

  9. 9 mtn_green said at 1:33 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Wft is really really bad. Rg3 can pull rabbits out if a hat.

  10. 10 mksp said at 2:56 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    Haven’t been this unexcited for an Eagles game in a while.

    We know what this team is at this point, even if we back into the playoffs we don’t have the pieces to make a real run yet.


  11. 11 GermanEagle said at 3:27 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    In case you haven’t seen it already. Awesome.

  12. 12 GermanEagle said at 3:32 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    I only want a shutout. Thanks.

  13. 13 KAJomo said at 3:42 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    I know it has been posted before, but where can I watch this game online?

  14. 14 GermanEagle said at 3:53 PM on December 20th, 2014:

  15. 15 KAJomo said at 4:00 PM on December 20th, 2014:


  16. 16 Anders said at 4:23 PM on December 20th, 2014:

    I find better