The Curious Case of the Philadelphia Eagles

Ralph LongoAnalyst IIINovember 20, 2011

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 20:  (L-R) Steve Smith #11, Jason Avant #81 and Riley Cooper #14 of the Philadelphia Eagles celebrate after Smith scored a 14-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on November 20, 2011 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The Philadelphia Eagles are perhaps the most enigmatic team in recent sports history.

Through 10 games this season, they've blown five 4th-quarter leads. Their defense that is stacked with pro-bowlers and outstanding overall talent has looked average; at times it has looked totally lost.

Their special teams which pulled them through so many tough games has been lethargic, with DeSean Jackson averaging about two yards per return. 

On the flip side, the offense, which last season was one of the most explosive in the NFL, has been terrible at times. Michael Vick has been inconsistent and turnover prone. The lone consistent facet of the offense has been LeSean McCoy.

Now, having said all of that, I honestly believe, and you can call me crazy, that right now the Eagles are a playoff caliber team in the NFL. Against the Cowboys, they were magnificent. They totally dominated on offense against one of the best teams in the NFL.

Michael Vick was near perfect. On defense, they befuddled Tony Romo and made an excellent offense look flat-out bad.

Tonight against the Giants, who are one of the best teams in the NFC, the defense was excellent against both the run and the pass. The offense, led by backup quarterback Vince Young, looked pretty darn good as well, considering they are playing without Vick and Jeremy Maclin. 

When I look at this team, I fail to understand how they lost last week against such a poor team in the Arizona Cardinals. The Eagles are a very good football team, that, sadly, has found too many ways to lose games in the 4th quarter at a rate that—and I don't have the statistics—has been absolutely unbelievable. 

I really don't think you can count the Eagles out just yet. They will probably have to win their next six games, but crazier things have happened. If they can beat New England next week, I think they have a legitimate chance but they must play to their full potential.

Here's to hoping the Eagles pull off the miraculous and win-out to get into the playoffs; they have too much talent for fans and experts to give up on them just yet.

They had to win seven straight to get into the playoffs. Well, tonight was game No.1, only six more to go.