Thursday, December 18, 2014

Eagles-Chiefs: The Morning After

TALKING POINTS

Eagles-Chiefs: The Morning After

TALKING POINTS

What we are talking about after the Eagles’ victory over the Kansas City Chiefs:

1. The real McCoy. With Brian Westbrook resting his sore right ankle, rookie Shady McCoy got his first start and proved again that the Eagles aren’t going to need 25 touches a game from Westbrook this season to win.

2. A confidence-builder for Kolb. With Donovan McNabb expected back after the bye, Kevin Kolb is headed back to the bench. But his impressive 327-yard, 2-touchdown, zero-interception performance against the Chiefs provided him a shot of much-needed confidence in the event something happens to McNabb down the road. 

3. Brent the beast. Tight end Brent Celek had another monster game, catching 8 passes for 104 yards and a TD. The guy everybody thought wasn’t good enough to be a starter is on a 117-catch, 1306-yard, 10-touchdown pace.

4. How much of the Wildcat is too much? Mike Vick was on the field for 11 of the Eagles’ 63 plays Sunday, throwing two passes (both incompletions) and running the ball once (for seven yards). The offense also ran the Wildcat 6 other times without Vick on the field. That’s 27 percent of their total offensive plays.

5. We stil l don’t know about the defense. After getting sliced and diced by Drew Brees and the Saints last week, the Eagles defense played much better Sunday, holding the Chiefs to 11 first downs, 196 net yards and 0-for-11 on third down. But this was one bad offense. So are the offenses of their next 3 opponents – Tampa Bay, Oakland and Washington. We’re not going to have a good feel for this defense until after they face the Giants on November 1.

-- Paul Domowitch

5 NUMBERS TO PONDER

1. Since 2000, the Eagles are 70-13-1 when they hold their opponent to 17 points or less. They are 2-0 this season.

2. The Eagles didn’t give up a sack against the Chiefs and have allowed just four in the first three games. Last year, they had given up seven at this point.

3. In their last seven games, the Eagles have given up 793 rushing yards on 202 carries, an average of 3.9 yards per carry.

4. After forcing seven turnovers in their Week 1 win v. Carolina, the Eagles have just two takeaways in their last two games.

5. David Akers who booted 29- and 38-yard field goals Sunday, has converted 21 of 24 attempts in his last nine games. He’s 6-for-8 from 40-49 yards and 3-for-4 from 50-plus in those 9 games.

-- Paul Domowitch

VIEW ON THE WILDCAT

Perhaps the best view on all this Wildcat madness comes from Kansas City free safety Jarrad Page:

"You can’t expect the wildcat or any other thing to be the meat of their offense. They do what they do. Those are a couple of little wrinkles in there. That’s not going to be what they’re going to do to you all day. They came out and ran what they ran. They ran their offense, and we didn’t do a very good job of stopping them."
 

UPCOMING

Andy Reid has not announced a schedule, but if form holds, the players will have this week off and retun for a short practice next Monday, have Tuesday off and then resume normal game week preparations for Tampa Bay.

In case you were wondering, the Eagles' next three opponents -- Tampa Bay, Oakland and Washington -- are a combined 2-7 thus far. The Bucs have the second-worst point differential in the NFL, having been outscored by 50 points this season. Only Cleveland, at 66 is worse.

The Bucs play at Washington next Sunday.

TOUGH TOWN

There is much dismay in Kansas City about the Chiefs, losers of 26 of their last 28 and six in a row. Kansas City Star columnist Jason Whitlock did not pull any punches with today's column. Here is an excerpt:

"Right now, Todd Haley and Scott Egoli are in way over their heads. They’ve taken the scraps Herm Edwards and Carl Peterson left, supported them with spare parts from New England, emasculated them with intimidation tactics that allegedly foster a culture of winning and created a team far worse than anything we’ve seen represent our city.

A culture of winning? Can you build one when you run the ball on 10 of 11 plays while trailing 27-7 in the third quarter?

Haley treated the second half like an exhibition game. He wasn’t playing to win. He was playing to avoid further embarrassment."

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To read Domo's report card, click here.

Sam Donnellon chats Eagles at 1:30 p.m. on philly.com

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