Monday, December 29, 2008

When Birds Fly: Eagles Trounce Cowboys for Final Playoff Spot

Last week, the city of Philadelphia, myself included, was left wondering whether our Birds actually could fly. That brutal loss to the Washington Redskins didn't exactly help matters. We saw head coach Andy Reid fail to manage the clock properly once again, to the point that we wondered "How many beers would a fan have to have downed to manage the clock WORSE than Andy Reid?". The calls for Andy's head, as well as a trade of our franchise quarterback Donovan McNabb went back to their usual ferocity of the previous weeks.
But all of that changed Sunday, as we watched the stars align across the NFL to give our Birds one last chance to steer themselves into the Playoffs. We prayed that those hapless Oakland Raiders could beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, in Tampa Bay. We hoped that those pesky Houston Texans had one last fight in them to beat the Chicago Bears. Finally, we reluctantly hoped that those New York Giants could just beat the Minnesota Vikings in the Metrodome.
30 Minutes before Eagles-Cowboys in Philadelphia, the stands of Lincoln-Financial Field were unusually empty. The mass of fans with tickets were all huddled around various T.V. screens in the parking lots, and in the pub across the street, watching to see if this game would actually mean something or not.
Sure enough, the Oakland Raiders scored 17 points in the fourth quarter to topple the declining Bucs, and the Houston Texans eked out a seven point win over the Chicago Bears, giving our Eagles one last chance for the second straight week to control their destiny.
In case you haven't heard, they took advantage of it by routing the egotistical Dallas Cowboys 44-6.
The game sent the residents of the tri-state area into a frenzy: we got the best of both scenarios, by not only beating the Cowboys but also by keeping them out of the playoff picture and seeing ourselves get in.
It also warmed all of our hearts to see the shots of all of the cliques along the Dalas sideline, with every super-ego shouting at somebody else, blaming them, and then returning to a small group of their buddies to whine even more. Truly, they had nobody to blame but themselves.
They turned the ball over way too many times, and while players like Marion Barber and Jason Witten battled through injuries to give this team a win, we saw Tony Romo once again choke in the late season big game.
We saw this egotistical team of maniacs known as the Dallas Cowboys fumble the ball four times, their starting quarterback threw a lovely pick-six to Sheldon Brown and as sacked three times, and saw their prized mid-season acquisition of Roy Williams look lost out on the football field.
Now, we go from a week's worth of funeral and death related headlines for our Eagles to headlines showcasing destiny, and awakening. Now we get to go to Minnesota and play the Vikings. Now we get another chance to see the Eagles finally win the big game.

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