THE BLOG
03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

NFL Week 9 Recap: Sometimes You're the Windshield...

...sometimes you're the bug.  Tough week for the Philadelphia Eagles, losing at home to the Dallas Cowboys.

Stud of the week: I was going to say Ellis Hobbes for returning the
opening kick off the second half for a TD, only it was negated by a
holding call that none of our crew nor Al and Cris could see, even with
replaying on our nice big HD TV multiple times. And then I was thinking
maybe Sheldon Brown for the pick and great 54 yard run back, but that
was negated by a low block penalty on Moise Fokou. And he got burned by
Miles Austin for what turned out to be the winning TD. Then I was going
to pick David Akers, but that's way too easy, even though he did make a
pointless 52 yarder when Andy should have gone for it, because it was
clear, at least to me, that with only about 4 minutes left in the game
and no timeouts, this was our last offensive possession. Or I was going
to choose McNabb for the plow ahead QB sneak on 4th-and-1 to keep our
critical first drive of the fourth quarter going just after Dallas had
tied it up, but the zebras inexplicably spotted the ball about 2 yards
short of where it should've been and refused to fix it, even after Andy
burned our final timeout and his final challenge trying to get them to
correct an obvious mistake. So I picked safety Sean Jones, who in just
his second start with the Eagles had 4 solo tackles, 1 assist, and a
pick. Good game, man! Sorry it didn't work out better for us all.

I
feel like I've pretty much already recapped the game. We weren't
terrible, we weren't great. But it's damn hard to overcome two picks,
although one was clearly Maclin's fault and one was about 50/50 Maclin
and McNabb. But on that second pick, Maclin draws a 15 yard face mask
to add insult to injury.

Another weird one? Asante Samuel
draws a taunting penalty while he's giving a Marion Barber hand up.
Explain that to me, please?

And speaking of weird, what about
some of those coaching decisions? We put Mike Vick in for a play,
presumably so that McNabb and Reid can chat some things over without
taking a time out. Then McNabb goes back in and we have to call a time
out. Then we go to McCoy on 3-2, he doesn't get it because he has to
come back for the ball and his field awareness is not great. Andy
challenges and loses, then we decide to go for it on 4-1 to try to draw
the Cowboys offsides, we do draw them offsides, but Jamal Jackson
doesn't snap the ball, and we get called for a false start.

I
do understand the challenge on the McNabb sneak, because that was the
worst spot ever, but the officiating crew was calling so much
inexplicable shit that Big Red should've realized that God himself (aka
Vince Lombardi) could've come down from heaven and told them they had
it wrong and they wouldn't have moved it. And the officiating was bad
both ways, but the zebras seemed to have a particular propensity for
making bad calls that killed any momentum we started getting any time
we got it.

And I really don't get that last field goal,
either. And why are we starting games so pass-happy? We either score in
3 plays or we go 3-and-out. How about a nice slow first offensive drive
for once?

In the end, it just felt like one of those nights
where nothing was going to go right. McNabb had some off passes, but
Brent Celek, Mr. Clutch, and Jason Avant, Mr. Third Down, both dropped
more than one pass that was right to them, AND when our young receiving
corps had problems, it felt like every single deflection went right to
a Cowboy defender. We had plenty of "almost got there" on D.

But
we couldn't win a close divisional game at home for the lead in the
division. That does not bode well for the rest of the season, including
the playoffs that I'm still confident we'll reach. Wilbon had it in 1
in Sunday's WaPo: the Eagles are the hardest good team to figure out.
Which is, as per usual, giving us all fits. But I do totally agree with
these guys:
let's not panic. We're still #2 in the division and we're only 1 game
back with half the season still to go. Were the season to end today,
we'd take one of the wildcard spots. And Reid and McNabb are still the
winningest coach/QB we've ever had (and even with his two picks last
night, McNabb still has the best TD to INT ratio in the history of the
NFL).

Just to refresh your memory:

Win Percentage:

Andy Reid - 61.8%

Wade Phillips - 58.8%

Tom Coughlin - 55.3%

Jim Zorn - 43.5%

Career QB rating

Donovan McNabb - 86.2

Tony Romo - 94.9

Eli Manning - 77.6

Jason Campbell - 81.4

Sigh.  On to the Chargers.

Get the rest of the recaps at Snarkin" the NFL.