Eagles Problems Much Bigger Than Vick’s InjuryBREAKING NEWS, Eagles, General News, News Monday, September 26th, 2011
It’s starting to become like an ongoing metaphor. Michael Vick leaves the game, the Eagles in turn lose the game. Furthermore, while Vick’s misfortune will make things easier on anyone who claims that the Eagles are all about number 7, the fact of the matter is that the quarterback does not play defense, and for two weeks straight, that’s been the Eagles’ problem.
What the Eagles’ failures on defense essentially came down to were poor tackling, big plays and running backs, with the latter being the most important of them all. Going into this game, it was no secret that if the Giants were to win, it would be off the strength of their running backs and on Sunday afternoon you could see why.
Criticizing Eagles linebackers could be getting old to some, and can be regarded as beating a dead horse to others. But as long as that horse keeps coming back to life on Sundays, and rearing its ugly head, fans will time and time again be reminded that the mid three are very much the Eagles’ Achilles heal.
With a weakness so glaring, there was no way the Giants were not going to attack the linebackers. On both touchdown occasions, Jacobs TD and Bradshaw TD, New York forced the Eagles linebackers in a situation where they would have to make plays, and each time we were reminded that they just don’t.
It’s a sad reality for now, Casey Matthews, Jamar Chaney, and Moise Fokou could very well improve from here, but what must be more disheartening is the performance that Victor Cruz was allowed to display. When the Eagles bolstered their secondary in the summer, images of Nnamdi Asomugha missing tackles on Cruz’ first touchdown, and just being out-jumped and out-fought on the second may have been the last thing that fans would have envisioned, but it happened.
Yes, this game is bigger than the plays that led to the Giants’ touchdowns, we all know that, but you could very well walk away from this game thinking that the difference between New York and Philly on the day was the Giants’ ability to keep from allowing a big play. Eli Manning did not throw a pick, and the defense did not give up a single passing touchdown. Conversely, the Eagles gave up three passing TDs when New York was not even in the Red Zone.
So now, to put this into perspective, we basically have a similar situation as this previous week. Yes Vick is out again, and he has admitted he may not play next week. He finds himself on the sideline again, frustrated like never before, not at his teammates, but with the officials for not protecting him “like they protect others.”
Vick may have a reason to be upset too, the play on which he was injured did appear to be a late hit, but perhaps he could be just as upset with the overall team performance as well.
On Sunday, LeSean McCoy, and his out of this world cuts, was the only bright for the Eagles, and it is the running back that said after the game “a team isn’t based only one player.”
McCoy is right, and the rest of the Eagles will have to vindicate those words as well. Forget Mike Kafka’s performance yesterday, that was in a late game situation with the Eagles very much in desperation mode, he should be able to perform better if called upon next week.
If the Eagles truly want to show that it’s not all about Michael Vick, the linebackers will have to show up, the offensive line will have to protect the quarterbacks better, and Philly as a whole will have to show that it is a complete team, before anyone can even think about calling them the dream team.
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