First and foremost, thank you to everyone who tuned into our livestream presented by VigIt for the Eagles vs Cowboys Monday Night Football Game. We were live at Showboat Casino and despite the dreadful outcome, the experience was top notch.
But you don’t know darkness until you are driving down the AC Expressway at 1am after your team gets their doors blown off in a rivalry game on National TV. The dimly lit expressway carved out in the middle of tall trees starts to feel like you’re driving through a dark abyss. And after that performance, the doubt creeps in if it is even worth it to leave that dark abyss you are driving through. The NFL team that is supposed to be an escape from reality has created a reality too demoralizing to face.
The sky is falling. It should be.
Week 1 in Atlanta: Week 3 in Dallas: pic.twitter.com/TShVfxh978
— Birds vs Boys Pod (@BirdsVsBoysPod) September 29, 2021
The Eagles 41-21 defeat at the hands of the unbearable Dallas Cowboys was one of the more dreadful Eagles performances in recent memory. The coaching staff look ill-prepared. The players didn’t execute. The quarterback forced throws and looked completely out of rhythm. The front seven on defense couldn’t get a stop behind the line to save their life. The offensive line somehow left less healthy than it was before kickoff. From start to finish, the Eagles looked like an inferior opponent that was overwhelmed by the spotlight.
The reward for going through this hellscape is playing an angry Chiefs team coming off a loss. The defense which was gassed, gets to face a generational quarterback on a short week. After a magnificent win in Week 1, the Eagles are now staring 1-3 so directly in the face it could be blinding.
But…they will be fine.
Despite throwing up in my mouth to type this, Monday night was Dallas’ moment. In a primetime home opener in Dak’s return, the energy was tough to overcome. ESPN didn’t even bother promoting an Eagles agenda. They threw Cowboys superfan, Post Malone at us, told us to take our lumps while they did their Dak soap opera, and then leave. The Cowboys played their best football since 2016. Zeke Elliot hadn’t looked that fresh since he played at Ohio State. Jaylon Smith hadn’t moved sideline to sideline like that since before the injury. Their much-maligned offensive line didn’t form holes, they formed craters. It was their moment, and we got caught up in it. But this is Week 3 and this is now a marathon, not a sprint.
Going forward, the schedule should lighten for the Eagles. You will get your ass kicked by Kansas CIty and Tampa Bay, so will everyone else. But the rest of the schedule certainly feels achievable. If you are one of those fans that thinks the upcoming schedule for the Eagles is daunting, I speak directly to you: Philadelphia is rich with art, history and science. You should go enjoy that. Because if Carolina, Las Vegas and Denver strike fear in your heart, you just weren’t cut out for this NFL fandom life.
And by the off chance the Eagles do get walloped by all of those teams, we know this isn’t the right coach and quarterback combination (or GM). We go right back to our original plan we were banking on which is an unprecedented amount of draft capital.
If the season ended today, the Eagles would have three top 10 picks in the 2022 NFL Draft.
They would be the first team since the 1965 Chicago Bears to have three picks within the first 10 slots.
It would be just the third time in NFL history that this feat would occur.
— A (@aidan_34_powers) September 28, 2021
Monday night will likely be a lesson learned for this Eagles team. Nick Sirianni is intelligent enough to know that if he ever runs the ball three times in a game again, he will be unemployed quickly. Expect the Eagles coaching staff to go back to formulating game plans based around helping Jalen Hurts thrive and taking the pressure off of him. There should be more balance and efficiency as they continue to learn and grow. Also expect the mistakes and penalty flags to rescind somewhat. Right now, the Eagles are a young team who look the part of a young team. Mental mistakes are a plenty. With game experience will come knowledge.
The only drawback to taking a positive approach with the Eagles right now is their offensive line. A healthy Eagles offensive line should be considered in the upper tier of the league. It is one of the few competitive strengths that they had going into the season. In one week’s time, three offensive lineman were injured. Isaac Seamulo is done for the year, Brandon Brooks is on IR, and Jordan Mailata is likely still out with a sprained MCL. Jack Driscool, who would be filling in, is also on IR. We are like one Nate Herbig ankle twist away from Jamon Brown getting a call. Losing three offensive line starters before October is just not a sustainable way of life in the NFL.
So, the Eagles should (hopefully) be fine. They are called growing pains for a reason. That’s what we witnessed Monday night, and what we will probably see Sunday against Kansas CIty. Like a flower waiting to bloom, this will take patience.