I have the misfortune of living in Eagles country. It's what happens when you marry a Philly chick. Watching the Chiefs in preseason means staying up till 3AM to catch the rerun on NFL network. While I wait for my DVR to kick in, I've managed to watch both of the Eagles preseason games. And color me impressed.
The Eagles have explosive play makers all over the field. Jackson, Maclin, Kolb, Celek, Weaver and McCoy give Andy Reid one hell of a toolbox to run his pass happy scheme. If this team stays healthy, they are going to start putting up points Green Bay/New Orleans style.
Actually, let me correct that statement. The Eagles offense will be one of the most dominant in the NFL if they can stay healthy and fix their offensive line woes.
Continued after the jump
The Philly offense has struggled to put up points. And I do emphasize points. They've had no problem putting up yards. Their pass catchers have been streaking between the 20's all preseason. What they haven't been able to do is put the ball in the endzone.
And you can lay that all at the feet of the offensive line.They haven't been able to run the ball, nor protect the QB. And the penalties that they are wracking up as a unit would make the Raiders wince, including an illegal formation penalty caused by the guard and tackle lining up off the ball that nullified a TD during the Cincy game.
The Eagles offensive line was manhandled last weekend by the Bengals. They gave up 3 sacks and 4 tackles for a loss. At least two of the 4 interceptions from the Eagles backup QB's came as a direct result of QB pressure. The only positive the Eagles can take away from the game is that they don't track QB pressures and hurry up stats in the preseason.
As for the run game, McCoy ran for 20 yards on 6 carries. Not bad. 3.3 yard average is respectable for pre-season, until you notice that one of those runs came on a broken coverage that went for 17 yards. Take that run away and McCoy managed 3 yards on 5 carries in one half of football.
To be fair, the Eagles O-line has been missing two starters for the first two games of the preseason, C Jamaal Jackson and LG Todd Herremans. The Eagles are actually on their 3rd center. The backup center Nick Cole is also out with a swollen knee. It's certainly showed. The Bengals path to the QB was right through the center of the line.
Starting G Herremans is expected to return to the lineup tonight, but Philly is still relying on their 3rd option at center, Mike McGlynn.
And the Eagles can't lay all the blame on the backups. This kind of performance requires the entire unit work together as a crappy whole. The play of the 3 starters has been inconsistent. They actually look a lot like the KC line last season, with Stacey Andrews doing his best Mike Goff impersonation. Jason Peters and Winston Justice have been erratic and are a sore topic on the local talk radio stations.
All of this SHOULD be music to the KC Defense's ears.
The Chiefs will have an opportunity tonight to take advantage of an offensive line in flux. Romeo Crennel and co will have their best opportunity this preseason to show the "internal development" that the brass has been trying to sell to the fan base all off season .
With a team as explosive as Philadelphia, it won't take a cybermetric breakdown of stats to determine if the front 7 made Kolb uncomfortable. The first half scoreboard will tell us everything we need to know about what the KC pass rush will be in 2010.
If the Eagles start lighting up the scoreboard like a pinball machine it'll be time to start putting the supplies in the bunker. Make sure you put enough BBQ and beer in the cellar to help you last through another long defensive season.