A great rivalry was renewed on Monday night as the Eagles traveled to Texas Stadium to meet the Cowboys. Many people gave Dallas a good chance to beat the Eagles, but I think the Eagles came in with something to prove. They left Pittsburgh last week beaten badly, and doubt started to creep in about them being as good as their record. Well, they certainly made a statement. It was a massacre, and 49-21 is quite a statement, alright. TO had three touchdowns, making only a mini-star celebration in the end zone, as well as on slam dunk. Mcnabb had more time than the Swiss in this game to get the ball to receivers. John Madden finally made a decent point in the game: he said that if Drew Henson could come in and play quarterback, maybe that would be a good contribution. The QB position is not the major problem on this team. The defense is the deficiency. They have not played cohesively all season.
One example I have to mention apart from all the fireworks was the pass from McNabb to Freddie Mitchell just before the two minute warning to the half. Donovan ran around for what seemed to be about a half an hour before launching the ball downfield which was caught for sixty yards. The Dallas defense couldn’t hit the floor if they fell right now. They allowed 343 total yards in the first half, and four TDs in the second quarter alone. That is just plain abysmal. Hopefully that new stadium that Jerry Jones is going to get comes with a complimentary set of defensive backs or the fans will burn down the stadium.
Here are my observations from the week:
Bail to the Chief
One thing I noticed was Dick Vermeil’s expression at the end of the game in the Superdome. He must be wondering what happened to 13-3 last year and being a couple of plays away from playing for the AFC Championship. How in the hell did they lose to the Saints? Derrick Blaylock had a “priest” like game with 232 yards from scrimmage, but they couldn’t find a way to win Sunday. I hope everyone followed my advice in picking him up last week if he was available. He will continue to be a commodity while Holmes is nursing the strained MCL that could be a consistent problem this season.
No Passing Fancy
Speaking of burning, Peyton Manning is officially on fire. For a while, Daunte was the talk of the league the way he started, but the Colts quarterback has positioned himself to throw 55 TDs this season, which would surpass Marino by seven. He tied the record set by Daunte earlier in the year with his third 5-TD game in one season. I have the feeling that he will break that record before the season’s over.
I Brett You Can’t Guess What Happened
Since we mentioned the Vikings, there is no doubt that they miss Randy Moss badly. The Vikes have lost three straight, have given the division lead away, and if the playoffs started today, they wouldn’t be part of the picture. Green Bay did everything they could to give the game away, as the Packers were leading by 14 with four and a half minutes to go. The Vikings drove and scored, put the Pack three and out and tied the game with just over a minute to go. Brett Favre pulled off a vintage comeback and set Ryan Longwell up to win, and he delivered. I just can’t imagine the Packers without Brett, but I know that day is coming quickly. Let’s just enjoy watching one of the best ever to toss a football while we still can.
Speaking of great falls this season, Carolina got the benefit of playing the 49ers this week, but only won after going down 20-3 in the first half. I can’t understand how they can score 3 in 25 minutes and 34 in 35, even if it was against San Francisco. Thankfully, Jake Delhomme saved my fantasy life this week, posting his best game of the season. This team simply has to take this season as a mulligan and come back strong next year. Their team is well coached and well managed but injuries are a part of any team and the bug just bit them back.
Just Plain Lousy Game of the Week: CIN vs. WAS- The Bengals have lived up to their former selves, despite the fact they have won two straight. However, I have never seen a Redskins team this bad on offense, especially with Joe Gibbs with the headset on. We all knew it would take some time to adjust to Gibbs’ system, but after nine games you would think that some signs of his teaching would be present; it hasn’t happened yet. With the change to Patrick Ramsey this past week, maybe we will see a turn for the better.
While we are on quarterback changes, the anointed QB of the future for the Giants will get his first start this week. Eli will have a solid running game to work with, but the defense is in shreds and teams will be showing him things he’s never even dreamed of yet. He still has to play the Eagles and Steelers this season, so my guess is his greatness (if it is there) is still a season away. Looks like Brenda will be calling Tom Coughlin this week to complain about her husband being benched, representing Kurt’s backbone. I guess she will negotiate his next nine games with Oakland since they seem to specialize in bringing in “has-been” quarterbacks.
The fantasy gods have been unkind to myself and some friends I have in various leagues. Here is my advice: never spite them – they can be cruel and unusual in their punishment, and you may never see the playoffs. Sometimes, good teams on paper just don’t play that way. As the Schwam always says, that’s why they play the games.
Take a look at the Detroit defense if you are suffering in that area. They have been very opportunistic this year, and had two ST TDs this week.
The NFL negotiated a new TV deal that may include more Thursday and Saturday games in the future, and maybe even a second Monday contest for local broadcasts. Thank God I will finally have a choice other than John Madden on Monday nights. I think the only way ABC will get rid of him is when he is dead. They say that wisdom comes with age, and he is halfway there.
Thanks, on to next week…