The Philadelphia Eagles were no match for Tom Brady and the New England Patriots' Sunday evening in a 38-20 rout that was more of a rout than the score even tells. The Eagles' offense and defense were completely overmatched as was their coaching staff, which seems to be becoming a much too common theme. A game that started with such promise ended with a chorus of "Fire Andy" chants from the fans in the stands, and it has never seemed more justified.
Vince Young and the Eagles' offense wasted no time in getting the scoring started as they took the ball 84 yards down the field for a touchdown in the first two minutes of the game to take a 7-0 lead. The drive was highlighted by a 58-yard pass from Vince Young to Riley Cooper which led to a two-yard touchdown run by LeSean McCoy. After a defensive stop for the Birds and a 43-yard field goal from Alex Henery, the Eagles were quickly up 10-0 in a game that they needed desperately.
Then ten point lead did not hold up for long as New England's quarterback Tom Brady began to work his magic. The Patriots' offense began to pick apart a shaky Eagles' secondary and went on to score 21 unanswered to take a 21-10 lead midway through the second quarter. The teams then exchanged field goals before the first half ended and the score was 24-13 at halftime.
The last three quarters of the game were completely dominated by New England on both sides of the ball. Tom Brady completed 24 of his 34 pass attempts for 361 yards and three touchdowns. Despite all of the hype surrounding the Patriots' tight ends coming into the game, the Eagles had no answer for Deion Branch or Wes Welker as their secondary was embarrassed by New England's passing attack.
LeSean McCoy carried the ball only 10 times in the game after coming into the matchup as the leading rusher in the NFL. The score does not give Andy Reid any excuse for not giving McCoy the ball more than 10 times as they jumped up to a quick 10-0 lead in the first quarter. The Patriots' defense did come into the league as the worst pass defense in all of football, but the Eagles became very predictable without giving McCoy any touches. Vince Young did throw for 400 yards against a very weak Patriots' secondary, but they came up with the stops when they needed them.
Perhaps the play that will stick out the most from the Eagles' head-scratching play calling was a fourth-and-one on the Patriots' two-yard line. After an injury and a Patriots timeout, which gave Philadelphia a good five to ten minutes to come up with a play to pickup the yard or perhaps the touchdown, they let Vince Young roll out to his right before throwing the ball out of bounds in the back of the endzone.
DeSean Jackson had possible one of the worst games of his career against New England as he was targeted ten times by Vince Young, but caught just four passes for 73 yards. Jackson dropped two would-be touchdown passes in the game and seemed to come up short with a case of alligator arms anticipating a hit from the defense. Andy Reid and the coaching staff benched Jackson towards the end of the fourth quarter after the drops.
Multiple times throughout the game there were very audible "Fire Andy" chants throughout the stadium. Reid and players were asked about the chants after the game. While Reid played it off, offensive lineman Jason Kelce said that the chants were "impossible" not to hear and that the players were disappointed. The Eagles are now 1-5 at Lincoln Financial Field on the season and they have lost eight of their last nine home games.
The loss to New England pushes the Eagles to 4-7 and while they are not completely dead in the NFC East, anything short of winning out will not get the job done. This game showed a lot of weaknesses and there were a lot of interesting things that will be talked about throughout the week, like the benching of DeSean Jackson and the skirmish on the sidelines between assistant coaches Marty Mornhenwig and Jim Washburn.
The Eagles have a quick turn around as they head out to Seattle to take on the Seahawks on Thursday night. It will most likely be a long, miserable plane ride to the west coast for an absolute must-win game.
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