What they're saying: Defending McNabb

After reading endless predictions by experts last week that called for an Eagles' Super Bowl appearance, philly.com intern Andrew Holland is back to bring you links from around the Web about the most recent playoff disappointment.

And for more Eagles news, be sure to check out philly.com's Eagles section with the best local coverage from The Inquirer and Daily News.

CBSsports.com's Pete Prisco gives the Eagles a B- for the performance against the Cardinals:

Donovan McNabb played a heck of a game. He carried the team. The defense, which had been outstanding in two playoff games, didn't play that well. They seemed flat for much of the first half. I give them credit for fighting back, but they needed a stop in the fourth quarter and it never came. But don't put this one on McNabb.

USAtoday.com's Nate Davis gives his Eagles team MVP award to McNabb.

Despite an average and largely uneven season from Brian Westbrook, the continued absence of a game-breaking receiver and McNabb's own Week 12 benching vs. the Baltimore Ravens, he responded with his best play of the season when Philadelphia needed it most. He completed 64.3% of his throws, passing for 1,146 yards and nine touchdowns (against one interception) for a 98.7 rating in the Eagles' last five regular-season games. They won four of those contests and rode McNabb's arm into what many would've considered a far-fetched playoff spot after he nearly lost his job.

CBSsports.com's Clark Judge picked Donovan McNabb as one of the five people he wouldn't want to be:

The call-in lines are already beginning to light up on WIP, and you can guess what's coming next.

CBSsports.com's Judge also liked the Cardinals' 4th-and-1 call in the fourth quarter on Sunday:

That fourth-and-1 call to Arizona's Tim Hightower in the fourth quarter. It takes guts to go wide, but the Cards must have learned from what Philadelphia did when Eli Manning and Brandon Jacobs tried to go up the middle on fourth downs.

CBSsports.com's Judge did not like Quintin Demps' hit on Kurt Warner though.

C'mon, Quintin, pick on someone your own age.

Foxsports.com's Terry Bradshaw says the Cardinals, not the Eagles, were the team of destiny:

Everybody figured that Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb would end their roller-coaster season in Tampa. The idea made a lot of sense. But that's all it was, fans, a dream.

USAtoday's Tom Pedulla says with 'next time' uncertain, the Eagles lament lost opportunity:

What was there to say after Philadelphia advanced to the NFC Championship Game for the fifth time in eight years and turned all of that opportunity into one Super Bowl appearance, a painful 24-21 setback to the New England Patriots to close the 2004 season?

SI.com's Ross Tucker gives Donovan McNabb a C for his performance against the Cardinals.

Donovan McNabb was productive yet erratic as usual, finishing 28-for-47 for 375 yards and three touchdowns with a pick. He made a number of plays, including a 22-yard run early, but was unable to hit many receivers in stride and allow them to run after the catch. The Eagles needed better from McNabb, especially early.

SI.com's Tucker gives the Eagles coaching staff a D for their performance against the Cardinals.

Leaving Fitzgerald singled up is hazardous to your health and the Cards made Jim Johnson pay for it. Haley and Warner seemed like they were always one step ahead of the blitzing Birds. The Eagles made a valiant comeback in the second half, so you have to credit Andy Reid for that, but why weren't they ready to go at the start of the game?

Yahoo's Matthew Darnell questions some of the behavior of Eagles players after losing to the Cardinals:

 Is a losing team obligated to hang their heads in shame and be depressed for a week after a huge loss? Are they not even obligated to look distraught for, I don't know, 30 seconds or so?