Saturday, November 10, 2012

Dallas Cowboys vs. Philadelphia Eagles

If you read my last article, you would know how livid I am about the Dallas Cowboys and their organization and have basically conceded that they are just an average franchise until proven otherwise.  I'm still holding firm to that opinion, but they do have a chance to keep their season alive with a win tomorrow.

They will be heading into a hostile Philadelphia and will face themselves, literally.  They seem to have their own sitcom down there in Philly as well.  Both of these teams are so eerily similar that it's scary.  Both find ways to lose ball games they should win.  Both turn the ball over at just an astonishing rate.  Both offenses have just been laughable and have trouble scoring touchdowns, settling for field goals.  Both find ways to lose in such a hilarious way.

I give the Cowboys a pass for their woes because I know what they are.  The Eagles have been one of the best ran organizations under the Andy Reid Administration or ARA like I like to call it.  I have been highly critical of the ARA in the past, but it's been highly successful when you look at the resume.  No, they haven't won any Super Bowls, but they've won a lot of playoff games, divisional titles, one Super Bowl appearance, and five NFC Championship Game appearances.

Which brings me to the point that the fact that the Eagles are standing 3-5 right now and almost last place in the division with the ARA still intact, is stunning.  The offensive line has been decimated this year but that is no excuse for the Eagles being 3-5.  They are too deep and talented to have such a poor record.  I expect  this with the Cowboys.  When they lose a key player, they don't have the proper depth to be as successful without that key player.  The Eagles on the other hand are usually pretty deep and have great drafts year in and year out.

Philly heads into gameday knowing they are in the same boat as the Cowboys:  You lose, your season is on life support and if you win, there's still an outside chance you can make the playoffs.  And who knows, maybe the Giants don't pull away and 9-7 wins the division again. 

I don't have a great feeling about the Cowboys chances especially given what happened last week.  I really love the way the Cowboys match up with the New York Giants as they showed in both games against them.  Winning one of them and nearly winning another after trailing 23-0 and had two outstanding defensive efforts in the process.  I'm not so sure they have the same advantage against the Eagles.  Not that the Eagles have better weapons than the Giants, but the way they attack you is in a way that Dallas might have trouble with.

As evidenced last week against the 8-0 Atlanta Falcons, the Cowboys had a tough time covering the middle of the field.  I commend He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named for signing Brandon Carr and trading up for Morris Claiborne, but not bringing in an impact safety is hurting this team.  Regardless of how great Carr and Claibo have been, the secondary still has poor safety play and Scandrick is not a good corner.  Then you add not having Sean Lee for the rest of the season and the middle of the field is ripe for the picking.  Oh, and they have a guy named LeSean McCoy by the way.  He'll be a load to handle.

Last season the Eagles shredded the Cowboys defense in the middle of the field in Lincoln Financial last season as they blew out the Cowboys 34-7.  McCoy also did his thing rushing for nearly 200 yards.  I highly doubt the outcome of this one will be similar, but I think the Eagles will have some success in the middle of the field the way the Falcons did.  Especially if the they can't pressure Vick and keep him from beating them with his feet.  They could also wear down as they did in ATL if the offense doesn't do anything.  That could lead to some huge runs for McCoy late.

I expect a great effort from the Cowboys but it just won't be enough.  I like the Eagles in this one because they are at home and just as desperate as the Cowboys.  If you can recall, the Eagles defeated Baltimore and the defending champion New York Giants at home.  So it is a little surprising that the Cowboys are a one-point favorite in this game.  This is a game that if the Cowboys don't get off to a fast start, it could get ugly really fast.  I think Andy and Vick's jobs will be safe for another week as they win 20-10.

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