Encouraging Start

The Eagles scored on their first two drives after starting the game having gone 99 minutes and 29 seconds without scoring an offensive touchdown.

  Clearly, what this team needs is to work on a short week, in which Andy Reid and Marty Mornhinweg don't have time to overthink the offense.

  The Eagles took the opening kickoff and drove 70 yards in 12 plays; Donovan McNabb completed all five passes in the drive, for 38 yards, including a variation on the familiar shovel pass play that took Brian Westbrook the final 5 yards for the TD. But the big story on Action News was the third-and-1 2-yard run for a first down by Kyle Eckel, who got a standing ovation from the Linc faithful.

   Then Joselio Hanson, starting for Asante Samuel (neck) showed why the coaching staff tabbed him to start instead of Lito Sheppard. Middle linebacker Stewart Bradley tipped a pass and Hanson picked it off. The Eagles had to drive only 41 yards for their second TD, covering the distance in four plays. Westbrook, looking less hobbled than he has lately, took it in from the 1.

   As we were typing, Kurt Warner was intercepted again, by Quintin Mikell this time, a third-down overthrow forced by a Chris Clemons pressure. The Eagles set up shop on the Cards' 44. But a sack put them in a third-and-13 hole, and McNabb threw incomplete for the first time tonight, forcing the first punt.

   Updating, it's 21-0, another Westbrook TD, on a 2-yard screen, on third-and-goal. How long to the Super Bowl again?

   Updating: With a huge boost from the zebras, the Cards are back in the game at 21-7. Kurt Warner hit Larry Fitzgerald from 1 yard out, 2 plays after Hanson broke up a third-down pass to Anquan Boldin but was called for holding. Replays did not show Hanson holding Boldin. Previously in the drive, the Eagles lost a challenge of a call on a 25-yard catch, referee Al Riveron announcing that the ball hitting the ground didn't matter somehow. because the receiver didn't lose control.