08 October 2012

2012 Week 5 Recap

Eagles at Steelers, Sunday, October 7, 2012

Stud of the week: Of course, it's LeSean McCoy. Not only did he make Larry Foote look foolish on his TD catch and run (I quote the ONE true thing Joe Buck has ever said announcing football: "One on one against McCoy, you have no shot. I don't care who you are."), the Eagles went for it on 4th down TWICE during the drive that led to the second touchdown. Who did they give it to? Shady. Did he pick both up? Indeed he did. And he smoked Lawrence Timmons in the process. As I posted to Facebook during the game: "Shady = Superman."

People! Let's not panic!

Yes, the Eagles lost. In Pittsburgh. To a team coming off their bye week. And a QB who has lost precisely ONE home game to ANY NFC team in his ENTIRE career (and thanks to Tommy Lawlor for the stat). 

And yes, Michael Vick turned the ball over twice. But don't assume that an additional 3 or 7 points from the Eagles in the first quarter automatically means a win. It doesn't. Not that early in the game. And remember the Steelers got no points off either turnover.

The defense got no sacks on a QB who's the most sacked guy in football. And no turnovers. Mike Tomlin clearly had his guys ready for the Eagles pass rush.

Here are a few good things:

Michael Vick, after fumbling twice, led yet another clutch fourth-quarter drive to give the Eagles the lead late. Yes, I know, the defense couldn't hold, but it's not like this is the Titans we're talking about.

Andy Reid went for it on fourth down TWICE in that drive, including once when the Eagles were on THEIR OWN 30. Do they convert both at this time last year? No. Honestly, I think the fact that Big Red had the confidence in the team to do that and that they picked up both is maybe the most positive thing to take from the entire day.

And special teams wasn't a disaster. Glad to see you back Colt Anderson!

Is the team perfect? No way, man. Where are the defensive takeaways? Where are the sacks? Why aren't we seeing more big plays from DeSean Jackson (I don't fault Jeremy Maclin, as he's struggling with injury)? And speaking of injury, can I just say: offensive line? Yikes,

But Andy's teams always finish stronger than they start. Does that equal a Super Bowl? Not necessarily, although there's always the "get hot at the right time" hope. But a loss to the Steelers at Heinz Field is not a reason to jump off the Ben Franklin bridge. This was a very tough schedule to start the season. But the Eagles are 3-2 and leading the division. Hella better than last year's 1-4, am I right? And, aside from the Browns, these are not patsy teams they've been facing. The combined record of the teams they've lost to is 6-3, and they handed the Ravens their only loss so far.

In the rest of the matchups:

Rams over Cardinals: Told you so. I can't figure out the Cardinals and Kevin Kolb yet. I do, however, note that the NFC West is the only division where EVERY team has a winning record so far.  That's different. So are the Rams under Jeff Fisher. Sorry Spags.

Dolphins over Bengals: Andy Dalton did not have a good day, and that was pretty much all she wrote for the Bengals.

Colts over Packers: OK, why didn't anyone tell me the Colts were dedicating this game to Chuck Pagano? I might've picked differently. Also, the Packers just aren't the same Pack this year. Also, that was one hell of a comeback rookie Andrew Luck led.

Ravens over Chiefs: The Ravens are not the classiest group of guys in the world, and when even they're telling the Chiefs' fans that they're being a bunch of dicks for cheering when their own QB went down...well, that's saying something. Keep it classy, KC.

Giants over Browns: You know, for about 10 minutes it looked like the Browns might pull off an upset win. And then there was the rest of the game. Poor Browns. Maybe drafting a rookie who can almost collect Social Security wasn't your best choice ever.

Falcons over Redskins: OK, not that I'm happy that RGIII has a "minor" concussion (whatever that is), but you should hear the weeping and wailing about him taking hits here in the DC! NFL Game Day Morning actually did a retrospective on Mike Vick taking hits where they're late, or he's getting driven into the ground intentionally, or hit in illegal ways (and not when he's a runner). What was the common theme? NONE of them were called. Does this feel like the Donovan McNabb or Randall Cunningham years all over again? Hellz yeah. And no matter how much you scream for your QB to "protect himself," as long as their are different rules for guys named Manning, Brady, Rodgers, and Brees than everyone else, it's not going to do any good. Short version: Skins fans, stop your whining and get used to it.

Seahawks over Panthers: OK, the theory was that the Seahawks allowed that safety intentionally. If so, that was too clever by half. Cam did not have a good day. Sophomore slump? Yep, looks like.

Bears over Jaguars: Ouch.

Vikings over Titans: Also ouch.

Patriots over Broncos: The final score actually makes the game look closer than it was. It was really never in question for the Pats. Everybody makes a big deal about the Manning-Brady quarterback rivalry. Considering the fact that Tom is 9-4 over Peyton, maybe people are thinking of the wrong Manning?

49ers over Bills: Another game that was painful to watch. Everybody gets to whip up on the Bills this year, it seems.

Saints over Chargers: Apparently, I underestimated how the rest of the Saints would respond to Drew Brees's record-breaking night. Oops. 

The Texans are currently leading the Jets 23-14, and I'm 10-3 so far in my picks. Gonna be another good week!

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