The Eagles have won three in a row for the first time all season, but the hole they dug for themselves earlier in the year was too deep, and they won't be going to the postseason.
It's the fourth time in Andy Reid's 13 seasons as the team's head coach that the Eagles won't be in the playoffs.
"You can’t do that," Reid said. "You’ve got to take care of business early. We’re coming together as a team now. ...We’re healthy obviously, and guys are playing good, aggressive football. As a head coach, I’ve got to make sure I get that part done sooner than later. The things I told you as we were going through this needed to happen sooner than the last three games there, from my standpoint."
Reid said he was proud of his team's effort in the 20-7 victory, but he knows the Eagles put themselves in a bad spot.
"That’s a tough situation," Reid said. "A couple lessons that can be learned. Number one, don’t put it in somebody else’s hands to get yourself into the playoffs. But number two, they focused in on the Dallas Cowboys, and that was the most important thing today, so I appreciate the effort."
One of the biggest offseason questions will be about Juan Castillo's future as the team's defensive coordinator. The Eagles held the Cowboys to 7 points, allowing only one touchdown late in the fourth quarter. Tony Romo was injured early in the first quarter, making way for Stephen McGee.
"They're playing well as a unit," Reid said. "Juan's done a good with them, bringing them together. They're playing their hearts out. You saw that today. They wanted the goose egg. We didn't get it, but they were really shooting for that. They didn't want them to get in the end zone."
Would the Eagles have been a dangerous team if they snuck into the playoffs?
"We’re playing good football right now," Reid said. "I’m not sure we’re a team that people necessarily wanted to see get into the playoffs. We’re playing that type of football, but we’re not in the playoffs so we’re going to finish the season off strong. That’s what we’re going to do."
The Eagles are 4-1 against NFC East opponents, but the division will be decided next week when the Giants host the Cowboys. The winner goes to the playoffs. The loser will be at home with the Eagles.
"I’m happy for Jason Garrett for having an opportunity to possibly take his football team to the playoffs," Reid said. "And Tom Coughlin. I wish we were there."
For my earlier post-game observations, click here.