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Thread: MVP = Jamaal Jackson?

  1. MVP = Jamaal Jackson?

    Disregarding the fact that our defense pooped the bed two weeks in a row, the only substantive change to our offense after Week 16 last year was the loss of Jamaal Jackson. With JJ (the center, not the sadly departed defensive mastermind) likely to be out for the beginning of this year, possibly longer, why are we trusting in Nick Cole?

    No offense intended to Mr. Cole (the back-up offensive lineman, not our all-pro DE) who is still a guy I want as a back-up, but I'm more concerned about our offense generating 14 points total in two games than I am about our defensive back 7.

    Maybe I'm wrong though. Does anyone have any other theories about our disappointing offensive performance at the end of last year? Is there a larger concern going into camp?

  2. #2
    I think it would be must easier and take a lot less time to point out the things that went right against the Cowboys those last two games versus the things that went wrong. I don't know if it was the media completely over-hyping Philly as "the most dangerous team entering the playoffs", the injuries, or just a multitude of intangibles that compiled into getting thumped in consecutive weeks.

    My concern centers more on Jason Peters than it does Cole - Ware completely dominated the left side to the point where it was almost comical, were it not horrifying. It got to the point where Peters was so winded that Ware would line up further outside than normal and simply run around him - no contact on his part, leading to several hits on McNabb.

    The one glaring stat that I took from that game (apart from the turnovers) was the 0 first downs from rushing. There was never a point in the game where Philly established the line of scrimmage and McNabb rarely had time to get set, due in no small part to lack of protection. McCoy, Weaver, McNabb, Justice and Peters spent a lot of that game on their backsides. This made their lack of drafting an OL all the more puzzling, even though adding Bell to the backfield will definitely help out Shady and Kolb.

    All in all, I'd like to think of it as a throwaway game(s) for a couple reasons, but mainly because I'm trying to bore it from my memory. First, Kolb under center is going to bring an entirely new system to the offense. People like to say it's going to become a more traditional West Coast offense, which it surely is, but the bottom line is Kolb is a different quarterback and thus will get different looks from the defense in addition to setting up the offense different. This isn't to say that he isn't going to face the same kind of pressure, but there's several examples where McNabb (not trying to pile on) held onto the ball far too long or put himself into situations that allowed Dallas to eat him alive.

    Second, the defense did get a lot better. McDermott's second year, drafting a heaping new crop of young talent in addition to the veterans already on the squad will allow him to craft his own system and implement JJ's schemes where he wants to, instead of trying to inherit the earth that was Johnson's legacy there. There's going to be an immense amount of pressure on Hobbs and Allen in particular for the roles they are going to need to play, especially now that Jackson is out, but if the pass rushers the Eagles added can play at even half their potential then that is going to help the secondary out immensely. I'm greatly looking forward to seeing Brandon Graham and Ricky Sapp on the field, as well as Trevor Lindley (spelling?) who I have heard is having an impressive outing at camp.

    The fact is that Philly was playing from far behind versus Dallas in both those games, which led to offensive calling that was never comfortable or allowed a rhythm establishment. The defensive changes, obviously, will ideally help in that sense by bending but not breaking and creating more turnovers, the typically m.o. of the Eagles. Between now and opening day, I am also hoping Asante Samuel will learn to tackle properly, which will undoubtedly help his game overall, since I'm pretty sure his position requires tackling - not that you'd know it from watching his play.

    Lastly, Dallas was ferocious. That defense played out of its mind two weeks in a row and it showed - they were everywhere and completely dominating. After Philly lost the NFC East and the rematch was scheduled, I had zero confidence in our ability to beat that team after such a pathetic outing on our part and such an impressive one by Dallas. I think it was Sun Tzu who coined the phrase "Every battle is won or lost before it is ever fought" or something to that effect, and that second game only confirmed what we all already knew was coming - the end of the McNabb era. The Eagles didn't show any signs of life at the closing of the first game, so there was little reason to think that six days to lick their wounds was going to result in a turnaround against such a thorough beating. I don't think there were many teams that would've been able to put up many points against Dallas the way they were playing, but now this is Kolb's team so we'll just have to wait and see.

  3. #3
    Having a terrible thought that I might have lifted the Sun Tzu attribution from Cris' podcast with Simmons - if so I apologize and give full faith and credit to where it is due

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    Since Alletetok is a Saints fan, he won't mind if we put a bounty out on him no?
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