A Win is a Win:
This was not a dominating performance, or a very convincing win by any means. In the end though all that matters is that the Eagles leave Minnesota with a W. They have let a few of those get away this year, and this was a much needed win.
At the end of the year nobody asks who you beat, or how bad you beat them, they just ask how many games did you win. At this point the Eagles will take them any way they can get them.
Red Zone Improves:
The Eagles are scoring touch downs believe it or not.
The offense was not great, but much improved in the red zone. Some creative play calling helped out.
I loved the shovel pass to Westbrook. They play had great design, and it worked perfectly. Jason Avant lined up in the backfield between Westbrook, and Tapeh. Then Avant motioned to the slot, bringing the Vikings MLB with him. McNabb sold the fake very well, and Westbrook just waltzed into the end zone. Plays that are designed that well, usually tend to work. Give a lot of credit to Andy Reid, and Marty Morningweg for that one.
Later in the game the Eagles scored again when Brian Westrook went air born, and dived over the Vikings defensive line. Westbrook reminds me of Priest Holmes the way he does that jump.
Even though he did not have a great day on the ground, Westbrook was still a huge factor. So much that safety Darren Sharper got jacked up by Jason Avant paying such close attention to 36. Westbrook's two Red Zone scores were the difference in the game.
Hopefully the team can build off this, and do even better against Dallas.
Receivers Making Plays:
What a nice game for Reggie Brown. Reggie had a career high 8 receptions for 105 yards, including an acrobatic catch on the sidelines. Glad to see Reggie getting more involved.
Speaking of great catches, what about the one handed grab by Kevin Curtis? That was amazing. Curtis also had a great 30 yard catch and run on a slant.
The receivers were actually helping McNabb, and making his job easier.
Greg Lewis even made some nice catches. He was once covered by a linebacker. A mismatch Donovan, and Lewis easily exploited. Then Greg even scooped one off the turf. Making a low McNabb pass a positive play.
L.J. Smith was blanked, but expect him to get more involved as he feels more comfortable with his injury.
On Side Kick Lit Fire Under Defense:
Minnesota marched right down the field(with some help from Eagles penalties), and scored on their first possession of the game. Then Brad Childress called for a surprise onside kick. The play caught the Eagles off guard, and the Vikings recovered.
I think this play infuriated the Eagles defense, and from that point on they made sure the Vikings would not get in the end zone again.
The very first play of that Vikings drive, resulted in a huge sack from Trent Cole. Cole just blasted through the middle so fast, and made the most impressive sack I have seen all season.
This set the tempo for the rest of the game, and the other Eagles fed off of this.
Cole is playing at a pro bowl level. He has really emerged as one of the leagues best pass rushers. He finished the game with 2 sacks(9 for the season), and had several big tackles in run support. Right now Trent Cole is the best player on the defense, and other teams better start to double team him. Otherwise he will make them pay.
Holcomb is Lucky:
I know Kelly's first start ended badly, when he went head first into the turf on a Juqua Thomas sack. So how is he lucky? He is lucky to not be paralyzed. When you look at the replay, it is amazing that all he ended up with is some bruising on his vertebrates. I felt bad for Kelly, as he was finally getting another chance to prove himself, and left with an injury. He should be thanking God to still be walking.
Minnesota Loves Childress:
Run Defense Was Great:
NFL's leading rusher Adrian Peterson was pretty much held in check. The entire defense should be credited for this, but give extra props to Brodrick Bunkley, Mike Patterson, and Trent Cole. Cole had a few tackles for losses, and Bunkley was a force in the middle. He has not been getting much pressure on the QB, but he is making is tough to run up the middle.
Peterson did have a few good runs, but must of the game he was getting stuffed. He really had nowhere to go. Probably his best play, was when he literally jumped over the defensive line, floating in the air like Michael Jordan. I guess if you can't run through them, jump over them?
Kevin Kolb Era On Hold:
I really must vent a little here. I am sick of fans throwing five under the bus constantly. Did everybody forget that he is coming back from major knee reconstruction? You should have expected there were going to be some limitations with Donovan early on. Can everybody stop being so damn impatient, and actually back the best QB in Philadelphia Eagles history for once?
I understand that McNabb has been very inconsistent so far this year, but he will improve. You can already see that some of his mobility is starting to come back. McNabb had a few plays where he moved similar to the "old Donovan". Andy even called a QB draw in the game.
Kevin Kolb is a rookie from the University of Houston. He may be a great QB one day, but that day is not today. He is not ready, and he wont be ready realistically for a few years.
Football is like war. I would much rather go to battle with Donovan McNabb, than A.J. Feeley, or a rookie. How soon people forget all the great things that McNabb has done here. This team was in a Super Bowl with Donovan! You don't just bail on him because he's had a few rough games.
Also I wonder where all the Jeff Garcia lovers are now? The Bucs have lost two straight games, and Garcia was terrible against Jacksonville. Three INTs, including one returned for a TD.
Everybody needs to quit whining, and realize that McNabb is the man in Philadelphia. He is the captain of the ship, and the team will sink or swim with him.