Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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We saw what really happened in Seattle, Andy

The hot seat just got hotter for Eagles head coach Andy Reid after a 31-14 loss to the Seahawks. (Ron Cortes / Staff Photographer)
The hot seat just got hotter for Eagles head coach Andy Reid after a 31-14 loss to the Seahawks. (Ron Cortes / Staff Photographer)

Time's ours, huh? Again . . .

Time was ours after the Boston Massacre was still in the rearview mirror.

And yesterday, in the pungent aftermath of Clueless in Seattle, when just as you thought it couldn't possibly get any worse for Arrogance Inc., it got much, much worse.

Bottom-of-the-septic-tank worse. So bad that Shady McCoy, one of the few Eagles who played with a semblance of fire in Latte Land, said this after the 31-14 massacre by a Seattle team that was 4-7: "We're much better than them. It's not even close," the Birds' best running back since Wilbert Montgomery said after an apparent overdose of delusion pills.

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  • Time's ours . . .

    Time to assume the position of trying to assimilate the eighth repetition of coachly nonspeak on a reel, a mea culpability where Andy Reid plops a gelid mound of blame on the plate and wolfs it all down in that familiar throat-clearing, gotta-do-a-better-job flagellation.

    Coaches used to get away with that crap all the time, when all we had to assess the quality of their football teams was the view from a distant seat.

    And after a game in which most of what happened went undetected by the naked eye, coaches seemed to share our confusion. "What happened on that fourth-and-inches on the goal line, coach?"

    "Won't know until I watch the film," coach would say.

    The films were jittery, wide-angle in black and white, not much better than a home movie. But they were better than nothing, even if there was no zoom or slow-motion capability. Coaches could see who blew an assignment, missed a key block, let up on a play and view myriad blown calls by the zebras.

    Before his latest mea culpability recitation yesterday, Reid mentioned he had just "scrabbled through the tape . . . " Meaning he and his beleaguered coordinators had not had time to break it down. Not that he would have revealed one damn thing or pointed a single finger from what he gleaned from a video so crystal clear you can read the fine print on the football. The man goes entire news conferences without mentioning a player by name.

    A half-century ago, football's great unwashed horde of fans and media were in the dark. Coaches could tell us everything, or in the cases of the Landrys, Lombardis, Paternos and Bryants, nothing more than they wanted you to know.

    However, you're not the only one in town who scrabbles through the tapes, Andy. You didn't have to tell us a couple of Vince Young's four interceptions were tipped by cement-handed Eagles receivers.

    We saw it on the video . . . our video. In hi-def. On a huge flat screen. With super slo-mo, freeze frame. More bells and whistles than a Mummers Fancy Brigade.

    I figure half the adult males in a Linc crowd have a DVR at home recording the game. In the flesh, they get the pain of the view from their expensive seats. At home, they experience the agony of watching what actually happened.

    So, we're getting harder and harder to fool, Andy, particularly through the redundant prism of your self-blame game.

    Most of us know the difference between the A Gap and a Cover 2. And for the slow studies among us, we have superb analysts like Jaws and Jon Gruden to serve us constant TV reminders. And there is this awesome thing called NFL Red Zone that lets us see all the teams that actually score touchdowns when inside the 20 during a 7-hour football feast.

    Back before digital technology changed all our lives with toys even the creator of Buck Rogers never dreamed of, most of the radio call-in football mob really were stone dopes, to Eskinize them.

    No more. I played just enough a long time ago to learn what a complex, difficult game football is. And it has evolved incrementally in speed, intensity and physical demands to the point at which it is, indeed, a train-wreck sport. A violent business at the NFL level.

    So even before Andy revealed that he had only been able to scrabble through the tape after flying all night, thousands of Eagles fans already knew the identity of the goats and villains. Which undersized linebackers got blown up again, which corners were violated by Seahawks QB Tarvaris Jackson as the Juan Castillo defense continued to hit like an American League pitcher.

    Hordes of fans, no doubt, have isolated and identified the cracked-fingernail suspects responsible for Marshawn Lynch's escape from a prison of large bodies and jaw-dropping 15-yard scamper to the end zone.

    It is just getting so tired . . .

    Coach talked about the four Young turnovers.

    "Obviously, you have four turnovers in a game like that, you kind of shoot yourself in the foot. And that becomes my responsibility, making sure I put the guys in the right position."

    Well, there is one guy Andy Reid should quite obviously put in the right position. Defensive coordinator Juan Castillo, Reid's most profound career mistake since letting Brian Dawkins walk, needs to be put in a position where his learner's permit is revoked.

    Reid will never pull the trigger on Castillo. Andy might grovel weekly in mea culpability, but he is not really big on admitting mistakes, particularly a miscalculation on such a grand scale.

    So Joe Banner has to rent a pair and play The Turk.

    And you all can boo yourself hoarse, but Andy Reid will be back next year. Jeff Lurie still thinks the once-anonymous former Brigham Young pass blocker, who somehow became a quarterbacks coach in Green Bay, is a cross between Lombardi and Bill Walsh.

    Time's ours, Andy. But how about this week you just keep it to yourself.

     


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    Bill Conlin Daily News Sports Columnist
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