Tuesday, February 08, 2005

The Day After

This game will be analyzed for at least a year and maybe until the Eagles finally win a Super Bowl. So I will try to go light with the football analysis.

What the heck was up with the lack of urgency at the end of the game? Which brings us to Donnovan McNabb... People noticed a lack of leadership in him at the end of the game. I'm not sure if "leadership" is the proper word, but something was missing. I remember watching Joe Montana drive down the field against the Bengals. There was a feeling that he was a man on a mission. I'm not feeling it from McNabb.

The disturbing thing was not that we lost. The Patriots are obviously the best team of this era. The disturbing thing was not that we lost by making mistakes and this game was winnable.

The disturbing thing was that McNabb was showing problems and flaws that just won't go away. Lack of accurate passing. Besides the interceptions (besides everything else how was the play Mrs. Lincoln?), McNabb was throwing behind, above and at the feet of receivers. His periodic lack of accuracy is disturbing in the extreme.

When you start seeing the same problems over and over again come back to bite you in the butt you start to worry about the future. When McNabb faces a tough defense are we always going to see the bad McNabb? If so, what's the point of keeping him around?

Why the heck didn't he run just to keep the Pats honest?

On the plus-side, I love Terrell Owens. He is a hard-worker who wants to win. Philly is a good place for him to flourish professionally. We understand him.

I told John Rabe when the Cardinals lost that it was good in one regard. It would toughen up his boy. I'm tired of being toughened up.

Every time the Patriots did something good they did the Bird-flapping thing T.O. does. I found it infuriating. I understand since T.O. did the Ray Lewis dance this year that I'm being a little hypocritical. But I do get the sense that the Patriots were being jerks, while the Ray Lewis thing (not the Dallas star incident) was more of a fun thing.

The Patriots winning the Super Bowl is like America winning the World Cup. A few people really care about the win. The majority think its nice, as they are wondering about the Red Sox.

If there is anything that upset me about New Englanders was all the whining about the Red Sox, when they had two recent Super Bowl championships to celebrate. That is like Cubs fans complaining after 6 NBA championships. You may love your Sox, and I felt badly for your pain, but I just didn't want to hear it.

We'd be fine with any championship.

Not to make excuses for all of Donovan's plays, but this might explain that last drive. If you remember, he was hit hard earlier and was rubbing his chin as if he was hit hard there. After these comments by Hank Fraley, maybe it was a concussion. Either way, he was not 100% at the end:

Some questioned his throwing ability and leadership, especially during the ineffective last-minute drive that ended in an interception, his third of the game.

But one of his teammates came to his defense yesterday.

"He fought to the end," center Hank Fraley said last night on The Angelo Cataldi Show on Comcast SportsNet. "He gave it his all. He was almost puking in the huddle. One play had to be called by Freddie Mitchell because Donovan was mumbling because he was almost puking."

Fraley said McNabb may have been affected by the change in temperature on game day. It had been much colder all week in Jacksonville.

McNabb offered no excuses Sunday night about his play.

"I'm never going to put my head down," he said. "I'm always going to keep my head up. Maybe we'll be back in Detroit next year [referring to the host city for Super Bowl XL]."

Chris J.
I think it's erroneous to disparage McNabb's accuracy. Yes, he threw 3 picks during the worst possible moment, but let's not forget he only threw 8 the whole year. I would agree with the accuracy thing last year, but this year he has really cleaned up his act. Is he Tom Brady? No. But he's a damn good QB and I am comfortable with him leading the team.

Chris J.
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