I think probably Les Bowen put it best in describing the Eagles’ real problem– they continually look underprepared:
Kelly is right that you’re dead in this league if you don’t get good quarterbacking. But it’s disappointing that after the Dallas loss, knowing he probably wasn’t going to get stellar QB play yesterday from a guy coming off an injury or a rookie, Kelly couldn’t figure out a way to run the offense through McCoy, (15 carries, 48 yards) or razzle-dazzle his way to even one touchdown.
“I think when you’re unsettled at that position in this league, it’s real difficult,” Kelly said. “I was concerned all week long. When you’re not settled at that position in this league, you better have a quarterback. And right now we’re unstable at the quarterback spot and we are not playing well at the quarterback spot, and we lost our last two games because of it.”
The Eagles having an unstable quarterback spot is not the reason they scored 10 points in their last two games against mediocre and bad opponents. The problem is hard to put your finger on, but multiple times this season, they have looked less than adequately prepared in certain situations.
Knowing that there was a real possibility Matt Barkley would play yesterday, and him looking ill-equipped to do so, is an example. I can’t believe I’m going to say this, but how many times did Andy Reid lose a quarterback and the team not miss a beat, at least initially? Koy Detmer, A.J. Feely, Jeff Garcia, and even Kevin Kolb and Nick Foles in their spot starts– all of those guys looked like they could run an NFL offense.
Barkley was in a tough spot, but there was one play yesterday in the Eagles’ own territory that showed just how in over his head he was. This one:
That’s the most basic read option play there is– if the defender keys on the running back, the quarterback keeps it. Justin Tuck was nearly erotically asphyxiating Bryce Brown before Brown got the ball. Barkley has to know better there. It’s the main thing the Eagles have worked on under Kelly. And Kelly has to know if Barkley isn’t capable of making that decision, especially at his own nine yard line.
I like Kelly’s philosophies – both offensively and as they relate to technology and conditioning – and his offense, obviously, is capable of being explosive. But there have been times this season where the Eagles have looked grossly underprepared and nearly incapable of making in-game adjustments. And though Reid always suffered from the latter problem, you never got the sense that him and his staff didn’t prepare for every facet of the game (as misguided as those preparations may have been sometimes).
Kelly’s never had to adjust like this, and he’s never coached in a league where something as small as the decision to give the third-string quarterback extra reps in practice or tell the kick returner not to run the ball out of the end zone really mattered.
People have compared Kelly’s offense to Madden strategies. But he’s more like a video game in general. Some facets of his gameplan are exquisite and insanely fun… others appear to have been overlooked. Like, there’s obvious AI glitches in there. Someone needs to fix those, because these last two games were as embarrassing as anything we’ve seen during the Reid era. And it’s not just the quarterbacks’s’s’s fault.
Let’s hit it.
But first, a word from our sponsors:
Hulk. MEET HULK HOGAN. He’ll be signing autographs at the Sports Vault in the King of Prussia Mall on Friday, November 8 from 7 – 9 p.m. Details and tickets here.
T-shirts. No better way to stock up on holiday gifts than with Philly Phaithful t-shirts. Shop here.
Tickets. Since our sports teams are fairly terrible right now, good seats are available at very low prices on Crossing Broad Tickets.
Sheil Kapadia details all of Kelly’s blunders. Love that word– blunder. It’s dirty sounding.
Imagine my horror late Friday night when I woke up to see these pictures of Nick Minaj wearing a Villanova jersey:
She performed at Hoops Mania on Friday night, and I’m not really sure how to react to that. She’s a big name, I guess she’s kind of a good get. I mean, I once saw Mims perform This is Why I’m Hot at one of these things… so Minaj might be a step up from that. But 50 Cent also showed up one time. Whatever. Nicki Minaj is now wearing a Villanova jersey in her Twitter profile pic and I’m just gonna go with it, see where it leads. Boom boom boom boom boom boom super bass.
You may have missed it late Friday, but Evan Turner said just about the dumbest thing you could say:
“I just show up and work hard. It doesn’t really bother me. I just take it one day at a time. I’ll be somewhere next year, so all that other stuff doesn’t bother me. I’m going to play hard, and I’m going to get my money, regardless.”
He took to his Instagram to explain:
“The same sword they knight you, they gone good night you wit…” I usually dont care what is written about me or what people think but in this case I do. I know you’ll never win a fight with the media but ill fight any day when my character and intentions are misunderstood.This headline doesnt describe me as a person or who I am. Basketball is my passion, I dont play to get a paycheck. I play cause I love the game. I think its unreal and a blessing to be able to make money doing something you love to do and thats what I am doing. The headline above was intended to take the attention off me and keep it on my team. Im truly not worried about a matter that will be dealt with when the time comes. Im worried about the team atmosphere and getting better everyday, as I should be…hope to see everyone at the home opener.
I could only imagine the reaction of Flyers beat writers if, say, Claude Giroux had decided to clarify a quote through social media. Tim Panaccio might have a heart attack.
Speaking of: Panotch talking about his wife?
I’m gonna go ahead and say that this guy may have been deserving of a timeout:
I knew Kolten Wong was going to cost the Cardinals the game last night. When he got to first, looking all scared, I thought to myself: Literally all this guy has to do is not get out. That’s his only job in this World Series. He’s going to make a blunder. A minute later– picked off by Uherheherheheha. Game over. I wish I would’ve tweeted something or texted someone so there was evidence. But I’m telling you, in my head, with the effects of the Mad Elf swirling around, I knew he was going to F up.