Up until a few weeks ago, everything was sunny in Philadelphia. The Eagles were 10-1 and had survived a grueling gauntlet. Super Bowl dreams were becoming realistic and there was a real sense of confidence surrounding the team…until there wasn’t. The Birds are now 10-4 and everything we thought we knew but tried to blissfully ignore has become true.
Something is just off. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is, but it’s missing. And in some circumstances, that’s okay. All teams have teething problems, setbacks, and bumps in the road. But the fact is that this is a Super Bowl-caliber team if we’re going off talent alone.
Quarterback: Top-5 in the NFL
Wide receivers: Two top-10 in the NFL
Running backs: Good enough for Philly to have the 8th-best rushing offense
Tight end: Goedert should be regarded as a top-10 TE
Offensive line: Should be a top-3 offensive line.
Defensive line: Should be an ELITE defensive line
Linebackers: Lack depth, average at best
Cornerbacks: Paid two familiar veterans big money. SHOULD be a top-10 unit
Safety: Lacks depth, but the talent is there
Eagles are fumbling a golden opportunity
Not only that, but the rest of the NFL is an utter trainwreck. Elite teams are losing quarterbacks on a weekly basis. Great teams are being beaten by underwhelming franchises every Sunday, and there are genuinely 3 good teams in the entire NFC. Somehow, the Eagles are trying as they might to fumble a golden opportunity to waltz to the #1 seed.
The Eagles not only made the Super Bowl last season, but they nearly won it. Then, they somehow got better through a remarkable draft class. They paid Jalen Hurts a $255M contract. The expectation is greatness because that’s the standard they’ve not only played to, but pinned themselves to.
Eagles fans and analysts should not be targeted for holding the team to a standard they created. And the truth is, they haven’t hit that standard all year.
They’ve played a handful of good games, but how many times have they just about been able to sneak away with a win? Outside of wins over the Bucs, Dolphins, and Chiefs, you could argue that many of those wins could’ve gone the other way.
The defense of this team all year has been that ‘good teams find a way to win’. Well, now they’re actively finding ways to lose. What does that make them? Was it all just luck? Did the Eagles get complacent?
That’s the worst part. Nobody knows.
Outside of 2 drives against the Seahawks, the offense looked soulless. As if someone was just spinning a wheel and picking plays at random. Jalen Hurts was throwing deep shots on every other play, and the running game reverted to bland, predictable setups within a matter of minutes after the opening stanza.
Eagles are forcing changes
On defense, the team made a coaching change just days before traveling to Seattle. A 10-win team made a coaching change. That would have been labeled as a barbaric suggestion by literally anyone who muttered those words until it happened, and then all of a sudden the vibe was ‘yeah, it was needed’.
It’s just an endless carousel. Fans are being spun a round week after week just hoping to get off without feeling dizzy. But that’s inevitable. Because seeing the same thing over, and over, and over again, while spinning in circles, tends to do that to a person.
There is no identity to this football team. What kind of offense do they run? What are the gameplan focuses? Why is Sean Desai, 15 weeks into an NFL season, only NOW being called out for lacking confidence? Should that not have been vetted during the hiring process? Or OTA’s? Or Training Camp?
Who are the players on this team?! Where are the leaders? Where is that sense of brotherhood that embodied the 2022 season so formidably? Why do the words spoken feel so empty, and the actions fail to back them up on a weekly basis?
For a Head Coach who preaches accountability, his offense has been bitterly underwhelming all season without much in the way of change.
For a quarterback big on press conference quotable, there was a real lack of commitment to securing a field goal at the end of the game.
For a team of beloved leaders and captains, there is an awful lot of barking about individual stats on social media while the team spirals into disarray.
For a team that’s adamant it belongs in the Super Bowl, they’re doing everything possible to stop themselves from returning.
AP Photo/Alex Brandon