The Philadelphia Eagles are officially "all-in" and they are now the odds-on favorites to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.
The NFL lockout is over and training camp has begun. Free agency was expected to be a frenzy and it certainly has not disappointed. Some of the biggest names available have gone to contenders and may be exactly what was needed to push that team over the top.
Trades, signings in free agency and even arguments via social media will make for some intriguing games this season. Players have walked the walk throughout the lockout, but can they live up to their big talk?
The Philadelphia Eagles are the talk of the NFL after masterfully improving their roster. They have added two Pro-Bowl corner backs—Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie—and three Pro-Bowl defensive lineman—Jason Babin, Cullen Jenkins, Trent Cole. They even signed Vince Young who owns a 30-17 career record.
Oh and they have two two's, two four's, two five's and two six's in the 2012 NFL Draft, but that's another article.
Philadelphia Eagles fans were not named "The most loyal fans in America" by Forbes Magazine because they miss games, but there are five games on the schedule in 2011 that you'd miss your brother's wedding for.
Here are the five Philadelphia Eagles games you can't miss in 2011.
The Philadelphia Eagles vs. the Dallas Cowboys is always a can't miss game, but it may be even more so this season.
The Cowboys were rumored to have been close to signing Nnamdi Asomugha and then Joe Banner and Howie Roseman pulled a Ruben Amaro on Jerry Jones and "America's Team."
The Eagles snatched up the prize of the free agent class while the Cowboys lost out on Nnamdi, Michael Huff and seemingly every other free agent they were linked too. Unless there is another injury, Tony Romo will be back at QB for Dallas and many have picked them as the team to come out of the NFC.
But that was before the Eagles unleashed hell on the free agent market. Sunday Night Football? You bet!
Ryan had visions of Darrelle Revis and Nnamdi Asomugha forming one of the most dominant corner back tandems in NFL history only to lose that honor to Asante Samuel, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Nnamdi.
The NFL was preparing for the proposition of two true shut down corners that would allow Ryan to concoct whatever blitzes he wanted. In the words of Lee Corso, "Not so fast my friend." Nnamdi chose to play in Philadelphia and you'd better believe playing with Michael Vick instead of Mark Sanchez was a huge factor for the CB.
This game should be great with the addition of Plaxico Burress to an already outstanding receiving corps for the Jets. Beating a Rex Ryan team will be no small "feat."
Kevin Kolb returning to Lincoln Financial Field as the QB of the Arizona Cardinals is must-watch television. Larry Fitzgerald got his wish when Kolb was traded to Arizona for Pro-Bowl corner Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round pick in 2012.
Unfortunately for Kolb, Fitzgerald will be blanketed by Nnamdi the entire game, but there will certainly be a lot of adrenaline pumping.
Kolb will want to prove to the Eagles organization that he is the real deal and Rodgers-Cromartie will want to stick it to his old team. While the story lines will be centered around Kolb for weeks leading up to the game, it may be the QB for the opposing team that everyone is clamoring about afterwards.
The first home game for the Philadelphia Eagles is also the first matchup between the two NFC East rivals (September 25,1:00 pm at Lincoln Financial Field). There are so many story lines heading into this game that FOX must be salivating already.
The Eagles have beaten the hated Giants in six consecutive games, including the most painful of them all Miracle at the Meadowlands Part II. The Eagles came out flat and played terrible for most of the game.
That was until Michael Vick exploded.
Down 31-10 in the final eight minutes of the game, Vick threw two touchdown passes and ran for another to tie the game. Three Eagle touchdowns and an onside kick recovery later, Matt Dodge of the Giants inexplicably punted the ball to DeSean Jackson who proceeded to return the ball 65 yards to the house to seal the comeback.
The Eagles have not lost to the Giants since 2008, something neither team has forgotten. Running back LeSean McCoy has been making fun of disgruntled—and possibly soon to be traded—DE Osi Umenyiora over Twitter calling him, "overrated and soft."
McCoy may have had a point in calling Osi the Giant's "third best defensive end," considering New York doesn't seem like they are too interested in meeting his contract demands.
You expect a meeting between the Eagles and Giants to be a tough game, but this one could get ugly quick.
The Philadelphia Eagles will be looking for some revenge from their loss in the 2004 Super Bowl on November 27 at 4:15 pm. The Patriots boast the best quarterback in the NFL with MVP Tom Brady and arguably the best coach in the NFL with Bill Belichick.
The Patriots made a lot of noise themselves via free agency by signing two game-changers in Albert Haynesworth and Chad Ochocinco. The Patriots roster is even more stacked in 2011, which doesn't bode well for the rest of the league since they already had a winning team with 14 wins last season.
The Eagles will have home-field advantage in a potential Super Bowl preview. The NFL should have considered playing this game in Honolulu, Hawaii as there will be Pro-Bowlers everywhere you look.
Make sure your schedule is completely clear on November 27, 2011. It's not very often that the Eagles get a chance to stick it to the New England Patriots.