Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Many Unanswered Questions on the Eagles Remain

Eagles Practice
As the Philadelphia Eagles prepare for their third pre-season game tomorrow night against the Jacksonville Jaguars, many questions still linger regarding the team and how they will fare in the upcoming season. By most accounts, the team had a very productive off season after a run to the NFC Championship Game in January, so on paper, the Eagles appeared to be a Super Bowl contender before training camp opened.

Now that a few weeks have passed, that assessment seems a bit more tenuous as several question marks still persist, while others have arisen. The biggest concerns surround the health of the team's offensive line. After all, as the NFL coaching fraternity tends to say, everything starts up front- and this is particularly true with the pass heavy Eagles offensive approach.

Concerns are not limited to the front line, though. Obviously, several emanate from a recent team addition as an hour does not pass without a TV or news blurb on the topic. Depending on how these lingering issues unfold, the fate of the team could vary widely. As testimony to the high competitive balance in the NFL, the Eagles season could range from disappointing to conceivably competing for the Super Bowl title.

Here are some, but surely not all, of the questions surrounding the 2009-2010 edition of the Eagles:

▪ Can Stacy Andrews and Jason Peters fulfill their advance billing and measure up to the team's commitment to them? At this point, even more pressing is whether they will see the field?
▪ Will Shawn Andrews find his way back onto the field on a regular basis? If so, will he return to the Pro Bowl form of the past?
▪ Can rookies Jeremy Maclin and LeSean McCoy make the adjustment to the NFL well enough to contribute similarly to DeSean Jackson last season? Both show flashes of wonderful potential that needs to be consistently present as the team is probably relying on their contributions more than any rookies in previous seasons in the Andy Reid era.
▪ Will Bryan Westbrook come close to the form that he showed in the 2007-2008 season, or will he be last season's part-time, limited performer?
▪ Will Michael Vick add enough to the offense to compensate for the distractions and make his signing worthwhile? On a more basic level, will he fulfill his commitment to the team in regard to conduct and behavior?
▪ Can Donovan McNabb continue where he left off in January? Will he prosper or falter through the almost inevitable quarterback controversies that will ensue?
▪ Can Joe Mays or Omar Gaither step up to fill the big hole created by MLB Stewart Bradley's season ending injury?
▪ Will a true leader emerge on the defense to fill the vacated shoes of the former Eagles icon Brian Dawkins?
▪ Will the players and coaches respond well to the Michael Vick experiment by not allowing the distractions to disrupt team chemistry or game preparation?
▪ Can the secondary come together to once again become a team strength needed to make their defensive scheme work?
▪ Can Sean McDermott come close to replacing one the NFL's best and most beloved defensive coordinators, Jim Johnson?

Tomorrow night, Reid and his coaching staff hope to gain some valuable insight and possibly gather some answers. Certainly, other questions will remain that will only be answered under the spotlight of the network cameras, when the games count in the regular season. All teams have question marks as they head into each campaign, but this Eagles team would seem to have more than its fair share, particularly considering that they are widely viewed as Super Bowl contenders.

1 comment:

  1. As an Eagles' fan,I was angry & turned off completely from embrasing the team after they let go of B.Dawk,because I thought they were cold,souless & money hungry. I am now ready to apologise to Andy & Ownership/Management since they have shown the "guts" & character in acquiring Vick. Knowing how controversal such an acquisition would be in this City, yet they show strong "spinal determination" in not buckling to the loud mouth idiots whose only goal in life is to make their living from the pain & suffering of others.These are not credible mouth pieces who should be listened to, and I am proud of our Sport's Teams who continue to pay little or no attention to such crazies. Mike Vick's signing has brought to light those who were trying to hide their racist's feelings & that is a good thing,because now we know them by their "stripes". I wonder what would be found if only there could be a fly on all the "hate-monger's wall" to watch & observe what goes on behind each of their closed doors? Mike is now being made to carry the guilt & load for all those who abused annimals before him, those who will continue in the future ,& those who continue @ present. Where are all the do-gooders like Cataldi & his WIP haters of humankind? Why aren't they using their bully pulpit to focus on the big picture of annimal abuse by all who are responsible? Oh! no,because they are not Mike Vick! This young man has paid dearly for is actions , & has taken responsibility,& it's time these haters/racists white men & crazies leave him the hell alone. He is one of God's children & has been forgiven by his Maker & those of us who matter, so to the rest of you, "go jump over the Ben Franklin Bridge" since u have nothing better to contribute to the world.In closing let me applaud, Andy & the Eagles Organization for doing the Godly act which will in turn bring success and rich blessings upon your Organization. It's not always about money,because when we die we cannot take one cent of our accumulated wealth( those who have) with us, so it just goes to show that in life it's not about accumulation of wealth,but the good & just acts that bring lasting rewards!!!"I am proud to be an Eagles fan again".As a parent & dog/owner I wish with all my heart that this opportunity that is given to Mike he will use to be the person he can look @ in the mirror & be proud. I also want to applaud Donovan for being a friend,not only in need,but in deed. "With friends like u. Mike will be back better not only as a player,but a man, son, father,& friend! "God bless u all with a season of great success,leading to a Super Bowl Victory".With God on your side, the ssssky is your limit."AMEN"