(This post comes to us courtesy of a friend of mine who is an Eagles fan. It was his idea to make the bet, so I’ll let him explain it to you. For winning, though, I get to sit back and relax as he begrudgingly recaps yesterdays AWESOME game for ya. I’ll even throw in my 2 cents here and there. Enjoy. I know I did. – NM)
As a life long Eagles fan today is a sad day. After 10 years with one of the most solid Coach/QB tandems in the NFL, the Philadelphia Eagles have reached a new low (You’re welcome).
Prior to Sunday’s matchup vs. the Ravens, this Eagles fan made a wager with the owner of this website; Nestminder as he is known to you. The wager was: the fan of the losing team between the Eagles and Ravens, would have to write the next blog about the winning team and how great they are.
Now, of course this means that as much as I would love to sit and bitch and moan about the infinity interceptions thrown by the Eagles QBs (Eagles QBs: the best players on the Ravens!) or about how Andy Reid, once a coaching (hoagie-eating) legend in Philadelphia, has completely tarnished his reputation (as a coach – his reputation as a father is pretty solidified), I won’t be wasting your time as loyal BmoreBirdsNest readers today.
Yesterday, as much as I hate to admit it, was a show of domination by the Ravens defense (like a mofo).
Most games in the NFL are won on a couple plays. This game had that for sure.
The first half was completely dominated by defense on both sides. Neither team could run nor pass successfully. The best drive of the half came when the Eagles traveled down inside the Ravens 35, but young stud D-lineman (actually linebacker, but whatever) Jarrett Johnson came from behind McNabb and not only knocked the ball free, but snagged it out of midair and returned the loose ball another 25 yards down field.
The lone successful offensive drive, which culminated in a Ravens TD, was set up by one of those “couple of plays” that NFL games are won on. An Ed Reed interception set up a 3rd down Touchdown pass from Joe “I used to love the Eagles (now I just make them my bitch)” Flacco. (I won’t spend the next 4 paragraphs complaining about how terrible the refs made this interception call.) (thanks. time much better spent explaining how terrible the pass was?) Daniel Wilcox hauled in the pass from Flacco, which appeared to initially be a throw away through the back of the end zone, with one hand and successfully got both feet down to throw 6 points up on the board (great play Danny Boy!).
The score put the Ravens up 10-0 but led to the only mistake their defense made the whole game. The next play was a 100 yard kickoff return for the Eagles, the lone points they would score in the game. (Damn it to hell. F*&# Andy Reid) (ugh…wtf is up with our special teams?)
The Ravens took the 10-7 lead into the half, along with their less than 100 total yards allowed on Defense and their 3 turnovers, all at the hands of Donovan McNabb.
Then to everyone’s surprise, the Eagles came out with Kevin Kolb (Ravens fans immediately thought: “We miss Donovan!”) at QB to start the 3rd. While there were mixed reactions throughout the stadium, there were none by Ravens fans of course, as they were all licking their chops, but for Eagles Fans, this could only mean one of two things.
1. Kolb would be the next Joe Montana? (1,000,000:1 odds) or
2. Kolb would shit the bed at the hands of the Ravens killer defense. (1:47 odds)
Needless to say, it was the latter. Kolb came out quick with a couple first downs, but then it was an early Thanksgiving for a hungry Ravens D. The Eagles wouldn’t muster any progress, which soon led to a blocked punt by Ravens standout Jameel McClain… and the route was on.
After failing to convert the free kick kickoff to any points, the Eagles next possession led to an acrobatic interception by Samari Rolle, the 4th Eagles turnover of the game. The next Ravens drive was capped off with a FG to make the score 15-7.
Following another 3 and out by the Eagles and a phantom unsportsmanlike conduct penalty by “an Eagles fan” as the referee announced (what? I must have missed that one. But, AWESOME!), the Ravens came into a 3rd down conversion attempt of their own. And while the Ravens were only 5-17 on third downs on the day, this was the biggest conversion of the game, another one of those “couple of plays” that win a game for a team. A quick slant to a speedy Mark Clayton behind a blitzing Eagles defense sprang him for 53 yard touchdown and essentially put the game on ice.
But wait! Eagles fans fear not… the Eagles would not let this game slide away easily. As the Ravens went into prevent defense, Kolb drove the Eagles to a 1st and goal at the one. After failing to get in on a QB sneak, Kolb ran playaction on 2nd and goal and made a rookie mistake. Kolb rolled out to his right and threw back across his body to the left side of the endzone where Ed Reed stepped in front of his pass for his second interception of the game, and avoided tacklers all the way down field for 108 yard touchdown. The Longest T.A.I.N.T. in NFL history. (Whoa. This play deserves much more than 2 sentences. Hell, I may give it an entire post. Mr. REEEEEEEED, who had been called out in the Baltimore Sun Sunday morning for going 8 games without an interception, tied for the longest such streak in his career, had a vintage Ed Reed day. The first pick that he scooped up with his fingertips and nearly took to the house before an ill-advised lateral – hey, Ed Reed is Ed Reed; you take the great with the kinda silly – ended his non-INT streak. Then, on the goalline throw from Kolb…Reed stepped in front of the intended target, and went ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHT YARDS, breaking his own NFL record interception return TD of 106 yards. And it wasn’t easy. He juked about 3 iggles out of dey jocks, and stiff-armed Brian Westbrook for about 5 yards while somehow staying in bounds. Are you serious? I love you Ed Reed.)
Congratulations Ravens fans!!! Living in the Baltimore Area, I have grown to know that this was simply a classic display of Ravens D which surprised no one. At least not this Eagles Fan. This was a great game handled by Flacco, a young QB who is quickly rising through the time tested ranks of the NFL, but the game ball goes to the Ravens Defense.
As mad as I can be at the Eagles, I’ve gotta blame the Ravens, first and foremost, for the loss. You should be proud Baltimore, you’ve got a solid team here. Just make sure you enjoy them while you can, as the last 10 years of my life spent rooting for the McNabb/Reid combo are sure to end soon…
P.S. Phillies 2008 World Series Champs (suckas) (I don’t think rubbing your good baseball team in our faces was part of the bet, a-hole. I don’t blame you though – this tackle pretty much sums things up, as the Ravens bascially gave the Eagles one big wedgie all afternoon.)