Your first reaction when you saw this article was probably, "Oh great, another Eagles fan whining about Andy Reid." If you ignored that thought and clicked on the article, I thank you.
Andy Reid, Andy Reid, where art thou, Andy Reid?
Where's the Andy Reid I had come to know and love? Where did he go? Where did that lovable big guy go?! Where did that good play-caller and that terrific game-planner go? Where did that winner go?
Over the past few seasons, I've seen the worst of Andy Reid again and again.
I've seen a bad play-caller, a bad game-planner, a bad motivator, and a bad winner.
I like the coach who fires his team up, who yells at them for being pansies, but who still has the teams back. I like the coach who knows how to call plays, and knows how to set their teams up. And before these past few seasons, Reid was all of those things except for the motivator.
But with the leadership this team had, I didn't think that motivation was a needed skill for Reid on this team.
But times have changed.
So in a time like this with a softer team, a good motivational coach is always needed. Andy Reid is not one of those coaches.
That leaves the Eagles with a bit of a problem. There is no proven leader on the team now apart from Dawkins, who won't be around forever. This team just doesn't have that fire and enthusiasm that every team needs.
Now the players are left without anyone to set them straight, and this team needs that person right now. Everything is just wrong with this team. Someone needs to be able to smack them in the back of the head. But nobody is there to do that.
But let's move on to play-calling and game planning.
Is there a huge need to explain these two? Anyone who has seen even a little bit of the Eagles knows what I am talking about. If you don't, let me show you.
What would you do on 4th-and-1 if you had a 6'2", 250-lb. quarterback? Would you:
A) Give it to the quarterback to sneak it up the middle.
B) Let the quarterback run a little bootleg.
C) Let your 5'10", 205-lb. running back run it up the middle behind a fullback who can't really block well.
Your answer was probably A or B.
Andy Reid's answer was C.
Other than his play-calling in critical situations, he does not do a good enough job at knowing when to run the ball and run the ball efficiently.
How many times do people have to say it! In this league, running the ball is so so so so so so so so so so so important. So important. When you have Brian Westbrook back there, it almost then becomes a no-brainer.
Yes, Westbrook was banged up last night, but then give it to Buckhalter a little and see what he can do. Just run the ball!
What about game-planning, you ask?
Well Ray Didinger said it best.
As I was watching Eagles Post Game Live on Comcast SportsNet Philly last night, Ray brought up a great point.
When was the last time you saw the Eagles make a huge effort to actually go after a defense and set themselves up?
In Reid's postgame press conference, he was asked about their gameplan and how it did not work and what the Eagles then tried to do to answer back. Reid said they just kept firing.
Didinger took note and said that that's all they do. They just keep firing. There's no stability. There's no game-planning.
There's never a play that sets up another play. It's just a play. Sure, they try to attack a team's weakness sometimes, but they never run some plays to set up others. They don't try and pull the safeties and go deep to Jackson. They don't try and run to the outside and pass to the outside to set up a slant to a speedy Curtis or Jackson.
There is just no rhythm.
And what about that horrible challenge last night? You know, the first of the back-to-back challenges.
Brandon Jacobs was clearly down, why challenge that if you know you will lose? I understand the second challenge, because that was actually a little closer. But there was no chance for the first to be overturned, so why bother?
John Madden agreed with Reid, saying it was a desperation challenge.
Okay, but why would you be "desperate" when it's obvious he was down? Your booth coaches saw the same video I did coach...what's with the challenge?!
Finally, my last complaint towards Andy Reid is his inability to win.
Apparently, Andy has never heard the saying "Just win, baby!"
This team has gone from a team full of potential to a team with very little hopes of making the playoffs. Sure, you can blame the players for part of it, but a ton of blame has to be put on Reid. He just doesn't know how to win those big games.
He's lost three straight to the Giants, lost a huge game to the Cowboys earlier this season, lost another huge game to the Redskins earlier this season, and lost yet another huge game to the Bears earlier this season.
We can even move back to the Patriots game last year that the Eagles should have won. Another game is the Bears game last year when the Eagles let the Bears make an impossible comeback drive to win the game.
In all of those big time games, the Eagles were ahead and should have won, but bad play-calling and poor leadership from Reid let this team down.
All of these losses just aren't coincidences.
When you have this many big impact games, it's suggested you win a couple. Reid hasn't even been able to win one lately. The last prime-time game the Eagles won was in 2006 against the Green Bay Packers in Week Four. That's seven prime-time games ago. Seven.
When you have Donovan McNabb, Brian Westbrook, DeSean Jackson, Kevin Curtis, a good offensive line, Asante Samuel, Sheldon Brown, Trent Cole, Quintin Mikell, and a good line backing core, why should you lose all of those games? This team is better than this. Way better than this.
The major excuse for this team's misery is coaching in my mind.
It's time for change.
Change the coach. Hey, even change the quarterback. We just need change.
Anybody seen Bill Cowher lately?