Tag Archives: Philadelphia Eagles

This Sunday – 4 NFL games and a winter storm for a 235 mile stretch of I-95

This Sunday, at 1 p.m. in an approximately 235 miles span of Interstate 95, there are four NFL games taking place, each located within 2 miles of the East Coast’s main highway:

Kansas City Chiefs at Washington Redskins, Fex Field, Landover, Md.
Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens, M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Md.
Detroit Lions vs. Philadelphia Eagles, Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pa.
Oakland Raiders at New York Jets, MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.


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There is also a winter storm warning, in particular the D.C. region. From Capital Weather Gang – Winter storm watch issued for much of D.C. area Sunday into Monday:

The onset of precipitation across the area is most likely between mid-morning and noon with the precipitation probably starting as snow but changing to sleet and or freezing rain by late afternoon (in most spots)…

…Snow is likely for the commute to FedEx field (and for the Ravens game in Baltimore) with the snow changing to sleet and freezing rain during the game. Sleet or freezing rain is likely for the drive home.

The storm will also hit Philadelphia and the New York area, though seemingly not as hard around game time. Accuweather says:

While a large amount of snow is not expected, the city could receive its first inch or two of snow of the season, joining some of the northern and western suburbs from Friday night’s storm.

Warmer air is forecast to move in during the storm Sunday evening through Monday, causing a changeover to a wintry mix, then rain from the coast to inland areas.

In short, travel on the I-95 corridor could be pretty tough on Sunday, though most major Northeast Corridor traffic bypasses Philadelphia via the New Jersey Turnpike. On the other hand, MetLife Stadium is directly adjacent to the Turnpike. FedEx Field can be bypassed by using the Baltimore-Washington Parkway (unless you are a truck) and the opposite side of the Capital Beltway. M&T Bank Stadium is right near the terminus of the B/W Parkway, but the Harbor Tunnel Thruway provides a bypass too.

There is also a New England Patriots vs. Cleveland Browns game in Foxborough, but the forecast there is sunny and 34°.

I don’t know how much these games impact I-95 in general (an interesting question), but whatever that is could be magnified this Sunday.

Yes, I’m aware I-95 isn’t technically continuous between Pennsylvania and New Jersey

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2013 Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles Q&A and prediction with @pancakecatapult

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Joining us again is @PancakeCatapult, the latest non de plume of someone whose internet celebrity far outshines my own. Shockingly, I don’t think Mr. Catapult is blogging anywhere right now, not even about Wilco — has he quit for good? Time will tell.

WFY: 5-5! Your Iggles are in the mix for the entire “SEC of the NFL” division. They looked great against the Skins in September, but have also had some games where they can’t score 10 points. What in the name of Mike Mamula is going on with them?

Mr. Catapult: Basically, Nick Foles got hurt and Matt Barkley happened for two games. Foles has generally been effective (and a little lucky) when healthy, and obviously gives Philly the best chance to win every week.

WFY: Nick Foles threw 7 touchdowns in one game. Is that more improbable than Matt McGloin being a starting quarterback in the NFL? Could Foles be the answer or is it just another case of somebody having the game of his life and seeing false conclusions drawn from it?

Mr. Catapult: Nothing is more improbable “Matt McGloin, Starting NFL Quarterback”. Nothing. Foles’ game against Oakland was insane, partially because of the final statistics, partially because Oakland covered absolutely nobody all day long. Chip Kelly felt no compulsion to stop the bludgeoning.

WFY: Tangentially related, seeing Terrell Pryor get blown out wasn’t disappointing, was it?

Mr. Catapult: Funny, before the Oakland game, former Pitt Panther Shady McCoy said “we couldn’t afford him” when asked about Pryor’s recruitment. No shade for Pryor from me anymore, though. He and Brandon Marshall were two guys that came forward in Jonathan Martin’s defense when that ridiculous scandal broke. Both of them had amazingly thoughtful responses to that situation.

WFY: Other than Foles, how is the Philly offensive attack?

Mr. Catapult: Stunningly effective on the ground with McCoy and occasional sprinkles of Bryce Brown. Riley Cooper has exploited some Second Team Practice Squad magic with Foles. DeSean Jackson is still dangerous as anything, and Zach Ertz is providing a second tight end option. It’s all happening!

WFY: Chip Kelly – innovator, mediocre or still not like enough like Buddy Ryan?

Mr. Catapult: I’m a fan. They lost Jeremy Maclin and Arrelious Benn to ACL injuries in training camp. Their quarterback situation has been less than ideal for most of the season. There’s a lot of lemonade being produced from only a handful of lemons, and that’s a testament to Kelly and his staff. He’s done some really strange in-game stuff, but the quality of football has generally improved.

WFY: How is the Eagles defense? They gave up a lot of scores in garbage time in week 1.

Mr. Catapult: Improving, for sure. Bad, but improving.

WFY: What about undefeated in KC, Andy Reid? We wondered if the players quit on him last year, but did this diva actually quit on the players?

Mr. Catapult: Everybody was just done at the end of Reid’s tenure. We all know he’s a good coach, despite his tendency to ignore the running game and complete inability to use instant replay challenges properly. He provided a run of playoff appearances never seen before in Philly, but the team, coaches, fans, management, soft pretzel vendors — they were over it, and it showed. Reid’s success in Kansas City isn’t all that surprising to me.

WFY: Do the Eagles dishonor the memory of Princess Diana by not returning to her beloved green and silver look? Or is Jeff Lurie just anti-monarchist overall?

Mr. Catapult: I’m all for breaking out the Kelly Green on occasion, but I’m losing enthusiasm for it. Let’s be honest, it’s a pretty awful shade of green. Hard to work with. We could use a little help on the uniform front these days.

WFY: Is a roof and fake grass is the solution to the problems playing at home? Did that post invalidate anything the700level.com has ever done or ever will do?

Mr. Catapult: Not at all — the Linc is a sterile, gray dump of a new stadium. It’s terrible in just about every way.

WFY: So, the Eagles are totally going to break with tradition and win a home game, right? Not just in this series where the home team usually loses, but in general. Wasn’t Donovan McNabb the quarterback the last time the Eagles won at home? Your prediction!

Mr. Catapult: I’m fairly sure that the Redskins stink. The Eagles very well might be average. 34-31, Philly.

WFY: 27-24 DC

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Philadelphia Eagles 33 WASHINGTON REDSKINS 27

It wasn’t that close…

In the pregame radio show, Sonny Jurgensen kept saying “Joe THEEZMAN” as it was “Joe THEEZMAN’s birthday.” By the way, this wasn’t the first time the Skins got blown out on Joe THEEZMAN’s birthday — it happened in 1985 in Dallas. Cowboys fans sang happy birthday to him after his fifth interception I think.

Sonny also said, about three times, that “Robert Griffin III needs to go down to Nats camp and learn to slide.” Remember, Sonny is a hipster Nats fan.

So, that was about it for Skins highlights, wasn’t it? Oof.

Don’t worry though, Siri still loves the Skins

When was the last time a night game with the Eagles didn’t end in a awful loss?

I was flipping back and forth between the Skins and Nats and I stopped flipping because Gio Gonzalez was dealing. The Nats were outscoring the Skins for most of the night.

It is going to be a grumpy Tuesday morning I think.

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2013 Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles Q&A and prediction with Kevin McGuire

The guest prognosticator series is changing with the seasons as the NFL starts up. For Monday nights Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles matchup, I’ve invited regular Philly sports contributor Kevin McGuire to answer some questions and offer a prediction. McGuire, who writes for College Football Talk on nbcsports.com and is a contributor to Yahoo’s Eagles coverage is back for yet another Q&A about his beloved Iggles. He’s been here before (for the Phillies too). We missed running into each at Springer’s in Stone Harbor by about 45 minutes last month.

WFY: Andy Reid is gone, as many of expected. It seems he got a better send off than Charlie Manuel. Nevertheless, do you have any final thoughts on Reid, in particular as it relates to the series with Redskins?

KMc: Charlie Manuel deserved to be honored in front of the Phillies fans for winning his 1,000th game as a manager, but I will leave that conversation for another time. As for Reid, the time had come for a change (I think That time came a year earlier but whatever). While the Reid era ultimately left this city without filling the biggest hole in the franchise’s history – a Super Bowl victory, or two – it would be silly to suggest he did not have a certain amount of success in town. I give him plenty of credit for turning the franchise around and taking a chance on Donovan McNabb and Brian Westbrook. It was the most successful stint in franchise history in the Super Bowl era, but it came with a number of flaws that were never really fixed. Reid is a solid coach who can help build a foundation for winning, but after over a decade as head coach it was painfully clear he was not the type of coach that could get that team over the edge.

WFY: One of the keys to the Reid era was dominance within the NFC East. At the height of it all, the Eagles took advantage of wins against a weak NFC East, including a pile against the Redskins although I did not realize how many times Reid lost to the Redskins until looking up the numbers. I think the game that sticks out the most to me came on a Monday night early in the 2002 season. The game was played in FedEx Field and came at the time the Eagles were really starting to become the top threat in the NFC. If I recall correctly, at some point during the 37-7 road victory the TV cameras caught Steve Spurrier in a classic moment:


Can I say it again? Thank you RGIII for healing us

I wish Reid the best in Kansas City as he looks to turn that franchise around. I expect he will and it will not take too long either. That said, I am ready for this franchise to turn the page.

WFY: Please briefly recap the 2012 Eagles season for us.

KMc: Must I? Why must you be so cruel? In brief, the offensive line was decimated by injuries and it was only a matter of time before that led to injury to the often-injured Mike Vick. Throw in a defense that could not create turnovers or stop anything, thanks to having an offensive line coach taking over as defensive coordinator, it was a mess on top of a pile of trash. As the games went by, Reid lost the team and by the end of the year here was nothing to play for.

WFY: Back in the present, how do Chip Kelly’s Eagles look so far?

KMc: Different, at least to most people. You know I watch a lot of college football, so the new look offense looks a little more familiar to me than most in this area after having watched Kelly at Oregon over the last few years. The up-tempo offense is still a bit of a work in progress but I am sure Kelly has a few things to unveil during the regular season. The defense also looks a little more comfortable in a more traditional format, but is still showing plenty of room for improvement.

WFY: Michael Vick is going start week 1, but do you think he’ll still be the starter in week 11?

KMc: No. At some point in the season I suspect Vick will go down with an injury, which means Nick Foles will likely be the next man up under center. I have said before I would not be shocked to see Matt Barkley get a start before the end of the season, with the assumption being Vick is injured, Foles struggles and Kelly looks to see what he has in Barkley before entering the 2014 draft with his eyes set n Tajh Boyd or Teddy Bridgewater.

WFY: Can the Eagles defense stop anybody?

KMc: Not yet, but they stand a better chance than the defense did last season. Getting back to a more basic 3-4 defense should ensure players are in better positions this season, as opposed to the wide-9 used last year that spread everybody out and put everyone in poor positions. This defense still lacks talent overall, but the addition of Cary Williams from Baltimore and mixing in some new faces should help change the entire mindset, and I really feel that along with the new formation helps change the defensive production overall this season. They’ll still give up yards and points, but they will be better than last year and at least that is a start.

WFY: How do you feel the Eagles matchup this week? Do you have any additional concerns about them opening the season on Monday night on the road?

KMc: This Eagles team has some personalities that enjoy the spotlight, so opening on a Monday night does not necessarily serve as a concern for me, but doing so in Washington could be a very difficult spot. If Robert Griffin III is in good shape, the Eagles could be in trouble. I honestly feel that the Eagles deserve to be underdogs this weekend and they probably will in most of their games. Do the Eagles keep things close and maybe find a way to steal a game? Yeah, probably. I’m just not ready to count on it yet.

WFY: With the Phillies era coming to an end, have the Eagles reclaimed undisputed supremacy for the hearts and minds of Philly sports fans? How would your rank team popularity in the Delaware Valley? Do the Eagles really have the 17th most loyal fanbase, last in the NFC East? Does anybody say “Delaware Valley” other than television stations and the Pennsylvania Turnpike?

KMc: The football season could not have come soon enough for the local sports fans here. If the football season could have started in June, not many people around here would have complained. The Eagles, with a new head coach, have sparked the imagination of the fans and perhaps given them a false sense of optimism. Of course, right now we are just starving for something, anything to get excited about.

Right now, the Eagles remain on top of the local sports scene without question. I think the Phillies are still firmly in second despite the struggles of management and declining win total (and attendance). The Flyers right now are probably the third team in the pecking order with the Sixers dropping to fourth heading in to what many expect to be a dismal season in hopes of a high lottery pick.

I can’t think of any time I have heard anyone outside of TV refer to it as the Delaware Valley, but maybe others have.

WFY: No Philly team made the playoffs last year, are you noticing a difference amongst Philly sports fans overall? I’m probably not asking because that could happen here, no not at all.

KMc: Disgruntled is probably the best way to describe it. Nobody needs to be reminded it has now been over a calendar year since the last postseason game played here (sorry Union and Soul, but you do not count in this discussion). Then again, most Philly sports fans may be described as disgruntled anyway. It’s easy to see why though. All we want to do is celebrate a championship. The 2008 World Series was a nice release, but the droughts still continue for the Sixers (1983), Flyers (1975) and Eagles (1960, before the Super Bowl era). Now, all of a sudden, the five-year exemption for the Phillies has expired as well. Where did the time go?

WFY: What are the best book and movie you have ever read and seen about the Eagles?

KMc: I honestly have not read a whole ton of books specifically about the Eagles, although WIP radio personality Anthony Gargano’s story (A Sunday Pilgrimage) of the Super Bowl trip to Jacksonville was decent. I actually really enjoyed War Without Death by Mark Maske, which was more a look at the entire NFC East.
The easy answer for best movie is probably Invincible, but I still can’t get past the terrible representation of the inside of Veterans Stadium. The documentary about being an Eagles fan (E-A-G-L-E-S The Movie) was actually pretty solid. Were you expecting me to say Tony Danza as The Garbage Picking Field Goal Kicking Philadelphia Phenomenon? I will say that Silver Linings Playbook was a pretty good film as well. It felt pretty accurate as well.


You know what want to watch Tony Danza as an Iggles kicker, shot from a video camera in front of TV, the way it was meant to be seen

WFY: What is your favorite pop culture reference to the Eagles?

KMc: I’m a fan of the show It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, so I’m going to go with the episode where the gang all tries out for the team. I mean, it has the guy who played Elvin in The Cosby Show playing the role of a Donovan McNabb imposter, Green Man, and Dee trying to pass as a guy.

WFY: I understand the Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie remarried. Do we know if the new Mrs. Lurie likes kelly green? I’m getting tired of having to watch midnight green/expansion like uniforms on an 80-year old NFC East team twice a season. You are probably tired of answering the question annually.

KMc: I wouldn’t hold your breath on the Kelly green, although many around here would love it. Chip Kelly, Kelly green, it just makes sense). I think at this point the best we can hope for is for the team to adopt an official alternate jersey that throws back to the Kelly green era. The uniforms they wore a few years ago, to me, were great. The silver wing on the helmet, simple Kelly green jerseys with traditional white block lettering just looks right.

WFY: Defend the lyric “fly on the road to victory” from the Eagles fight song. (Still better than almost everything Messrs Henly, Frey, et al. wrote)

KMc: I do not see much of an issue with this one. Have you ever used the phrase “I flew down the highway,” or something like that to describe how quickly you got form one place to another? Have you not watched Back to the Future, where Doc and Marty fly on a skyway thanks to a hover conversion on the DeLorean “Where we’re going we don’t need roads.”

In the history of music lyrics, I hardly think we need to quibble over this line in the official team fight song.

WFY: Who takes game 1? Who takes the season series? What do you think the Eagles and Skins records will be, respectively?

KMc: I think we are in store for a season split between the Eagles and Redskins, with the home team winning each time. I think the Eagles defense will get better as the season progresses, but this being the first game of the season means they are perhaps their most vulnerable. If RG3 is good to go, I expect to see the Eagles defense lagging at times. I think the Eagles put up some points, but think they give up a bunch as well in week one.

I think the Eagles have a low ceiling, with seven games perhaps being optimistic. The Redskins can probably get to 10 wins this season, but that is under the assumption RG3 stays healthy. I doubt either team keeps their opening day starting quarterback for a full 16-game schedule. I’ll put the Redskins down at nine wins.

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2012 Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles Q&A and prediction with @scrappled

The penultimate game of the 2012 Washington Redskins regular season is this Sunday in Philadelphia against the Eagles. As always, for the second meeting of the year, I bring in @scrappled to talk about his beloved Iggles. You may remember him from the 17 different blogs he’s run over the years and his many appearances on this site.

WFY: So, if the Eagles do the unthinkable and fire Reid, Philly sports radio meatheads are going to be getting in fights with each other over which one of Buddy Ryan’s sons to hire, aren’t they?

@scrappled: Possibly, but we know this ends with Rich Kotite, Jr. taking the job in mid-January.

WFY: In all seriousness, what in the name of John Spagnola happened to the “dream team” that is a few games under .500 since the 2011 season? Was Philly foolish to go all in on Michael Vick?

@scrappled: Name it, and it’s gone horribly wrong. The defense has been awful for any variety of reasons. The defensive backs can’t cover or tackle. The sacks piled up by Jason Babin and Trent Cole have completely disappeared. Andy Reid refuses to lean on LeSean McCoy’s talents. Special teams are terrible. They’re seriously not a good football team in any part of the game. The Eagles are essentially one notch above the Jaguars.

WFY: What are the Eagles strengths, where could they cause trouble for the ‘Skins?

@scrappled: Alex Henery kicks a hell of a field goal. That’s about all.

WFY: Rookie quarterbacks are awesome! I’m just going to assume that Nick Foles has been a revolutionary superstar that has motivated the team to success no one believed they had in them, right?

@scrappled: Dead ringer for Napoleon Dynamite when he has his helmet on. In all seriousness, he hasn’t been bad considering that McCoy’s been out of the lineup for the past few weeks. The offensive line has lurched toward occasional competence lately, as well. Put it this way, I’m intrigued. I don’t look at the guy and think that there’s no way he can play at this level.
WFY: If Santa Claus makes an appearance at the game, will he be booed?

@scrappled: It’s tradition, man. If Santa shows up at a pediatric cancer ward, he gets booed.

WFY: What if it turns out the man wearing the Santa suit is…Buddy Ryan?

@scrappled: He’d probably try to choke one of his elves, thinking it’s Kevin Gilbride.

WFY: What are your best/worst Eagles-Redskins memories?

@scrappled: It has to be the infamous Body Bag Game, right? Anytime Brian Mitchell is forced to play quarterback, the world wins.

WFY: I understand from a previous Q&A that the owner’s now-ex wife was a proponent of the midnight green look. Is there any talk that a return to the true Eagles look of kelly green and silver happening? Seems like the end of the Reid era would be a great time to go back.

@scrappled: Doubtful. The owner isn’t exactly the type of guy who celebrates the franchise’s history, and that old shade of green isn’t something you see much in modern uniforms as the primary color. Loving that ketchup/mustard look for the Skins, though!

WFY: Which team do you think has a brighter future, the Eagles or Redskins?

@scrappled: Oh God, the Redskins by a mile. The Eagles have so much work to do in so many areas. They have to figure out what’s up with Foles, rebuild the offensive line, and completely change the defensive philosophy after the dumpster fire of the past two years.

WFY: Now that I have aggressively trolled your Iggles (thank you transcendent rookie QB and his quality backup!) have I jinxed the Redskins or are the Eagles just so committed to quitting on Andy Reid that it doesn’t matter? Who wins on Sunday?

@scrappled: The Eagles will be spunky for a total of 15-20 minutes during the game. That’s about all. Unless the Skins just blatantly give the Eagles two or three touchdowns via turnovers or special teams, it should be a comfortable win.

WFY: P.S. How much do you miss blogging?

@scrappled: Not for one single minute, at least not for a site that gets a million page views per month. I’m better off creating a Tumblr for Harrisburg sushi joints than ever going back to the admin/mod life.

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2012 Redskins vs. Eagles Game 1 Q&A and prediction with Kevin McGuire

Once again, Kevin McGuire has returned to answer some questions about a Philadelphia team: the Eagles are in town to take on the Washington Redskins. This season, McGuire is a local football blogger for CBS Philly.

WFY: What in the name of Marion Campbell is going on in the City of Brotherly Love?! How hot is the seat that Andy Reid is sitting on? Does he just have to prepare the team better?

KMc: Andy Reid’s seat has never been hotter after dropping five straight games for the first time in his lengthy career. Usually I would be wiling to give a coach an excuse when his offensive line has been decimated by injuries and the starting quarterback has been banged up as much as he has, but ultimately what it all comes back to is Reid has failed to do what he always says he has to do, which is put the team in a better position to win.

WFY: Reid’s failures have stretched beyond preparing the team with X’s and O’s. The problem extends to player management with poor talent evaluation in the draft and free agent signings either running out of steam or just not bringing back the return expected. It also has to do with a struggle to fill the coaching staff with coaches capable of helping out with the management of the team.

KMc: Reid is quickly running out of excuses and scapegoats, which has me seriously thinking anything short of a miraculous Super Bowl run will lead to a coaching change in Philadelphia this off-season.

WFY: Is Michael Vick still expected to be out on Sunday? How much of a factor has he been in the Eagles decline from a “dream team” to the current situation? Is Nick Foles ready or will it not even matter since rookie QBs always beat the Skins?

KMc: All signs point to rookie Nick Foles getting his first start this weekend. Vick was held out of practice on Tuesday and the team continues to monitor his status while preparing Foles to lead the offense with first team reps in practice. Vick has done himself no favors with turnovers, but I also point the blame on an offensive line that has given him no protection all year long. Vick does hold on to the football too long, but that could be because he has to run for his life as well. As far as I am concerned, it does not matter if Joe Montana, John Elway or Sonny Jurgensen is under center because there is no protection from the offensive line. Until that is fixed, it does not matter who is the quarterback.

WFY: I understand from a previous Q&A that the owner’s now-ex wife was a proponent of the midnight green look. Is there any talk that a return to the true Eagles look of kelly green and silver happening? Seems like the end of the Reid era would be a great time to go back.

KMc: That has always been the story I have heard when it comes to the change to midnight green, of course it had plenty of marketing and financial influences driving the change as well. Unfortunately there has not been any talk about a return to the Kelly green despite the wishes of many fans in the area (myself included). Personally I agree, a change in color scheme with a return to a more traditional look would be great to see as a new era gets underway.

WFY: Sports radio is bad everywhere, but from what i understand, it is really bad in Philly, so I like to think that the callers are arguing over which of Buddy Ryan’s sons needs to be hired. Am I on to something there?

KMc: You still get a knucklehead from time to time who wants nothing more than a head coach like a Ryan brother to fire up the team the way Reid does not, but I think fans have finally come to grips with the reality that the Ryans just are not great coaches. Instead we are hearing names like Jon Gruden and Chip Kelly starting to be mentioned more and more from fans. Bill Cowher has his name mentioned occasionally as well. I have even heard the name Bill O’Brien – yes, THAT Bill O’Brien – mentioned couple times by fans this week. Oh boy…

WFY: Best part of being an Eagles fan? The worst?

KMc: The best part is, when the team is winning, the passion and glee shared by fans who may not even know each other. The season that saw the Eagles head to Jacksonville for the Super Bowl was a blissful time for the region. If and when the Eagles finally bring home a Super Bowl, this city will erupt in euphoric fashion. The Phillies estimated 1 million people attended the 2008 World Series parade. I think despite being in February, an Eagles Super Bowl parade would match it.

The worst is obvious. Having to deal with negative fan stories, one after the other. Eagles fans will never be able to hear the end of the Santa Claus story or the booing of Donovan McNabb at the draft or the Michael Irvin injury. In fairness, some stories have been exaggerated but all have cast a rightfully dark image of the fan base as a whole.

WFY: What concerns you about the Eagles playing the Redskins?

KMc: Robert Griffin III. The Eagles have a weak secondary and struggle to bring pressure to the quarterback. Against a mobile quarterback with an arm and footwork like RG3 should be very scary for Eagles fans this weekend.

WFY: Which team do you think has a brighter future, the Eagles or Redskins?

KMc: Right at this moment the Redskins have a brighter future just based on having a player who may be the franchise quarterback for years to come (I am a huge RGIII fan). That said, depending on who the Eagles end up hiring as head coach, I think that could sway me back to the Eagles just because I find it difficult to buy in to Dan Snyder’s management of the Redskins.

WFY: Who is the #1 team in Philly right now, Eagles, Phillies, Flyer or 76ers?

KMc: Things are rough right now. The Eagles stink. The Sixers are awaiting the eventual debut of injury-riddled Andrew Bynum and fans are losing patience with them in the meantime. The Phillies ended the season on a disappointing note (congrats to your Nationals of course) but could be back in 2013 with a healthier core. The Flyers would be the best team right now, if only they were playing hockey.

For the time being I would suggest the Phillies are still on top, only because the Eagles have squandered an opportunity to take over the top spot in the meantime.

WFY: Prediction for Sunday’s game?

KMc: I think the Eagles have to win a game at some point but I see nothing to instill any confidence in picking them to win on the road this week. Everything I would bet against is found on the Eagles. An imploding offensive line, a non-threatening defense that lacks the ability to tackle and a rookie quarterback making his first start, and doing so on the road.

I’m not exactly big on what the Redskins bring to the game either, but until the Eagles win a game to snap this losing streak I just cannot say they should win any game they play until something changes.

KMc: Redskins 20, Eagles 17

WFY: Redskins 24 Eagles 16

In keeping with the spirit of Philly native & Phillies minor leaguer Glenn Brenner’s original Guest Prognosticator series, I’m going to ask you to pick a winner of each NFL game this week (please just bold the winner).

KMc’s picks:

Dolphins vs Bills (posted before the game)

Browns vs Cowboys

Buccaneers vs Panthers

Bengals vs Chiefs

Packers vs Lions

Jaguars vs Texans

Jets vs Rams

Cardinals vs Falcons

Saints vs Raiders

Chargers vs Broncos

Colts vs Patriots

Ravens vs Steelers

Bears vs 49ers

WFY’s picks

Dolphins vs Bills

Browns vs Cowboys

Buccaneers vs Panthers

Bengals vs Chiefs

Packers vs Lions

Jaguars vs Texans

Jets vs Rams

Cardinals vs Falcons

Saints vs Raiders

Chargers vs Broncos

Colts vs Patriots

Ravens vs Steelers

Bears vs 49ers

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2011 Redskins at Eagles Q&A and prediction with @scrappled

The last guest prognosticator of 2011 is @scrappled of Black Shoe Diaries, a Philly sports fan. He’s been here before. Let’s get it on!

WFY: If Michael Vick fought and executed your puppies would you favor irrevocable…Okay, that’s OLD news since Vick went to the Pro Bowl last year and signed a big contract so he’s a good person again, right? How has he done this season, a 7-8 season?

@scrappled: Okay, I suppose. The Eagles massively screwed up by not bolstering their offensive line, which leads to the evasive but undersized Vick taking too many shots. Not to mention, Vick has no idea how to slide. Bambi on ice is more graceful than a Michael Vick hook slide.

WFY: 7-8? D.C. was into falling flat after being OFFSEASON CHAMPIONS way before Philly. Is the clock running out on head coach Andy Reid? Does he still run a worse two minute drill than Penn State and its
3-tiered play calling (of the past, I guess)?

@scrappled: I’d be shocked if Reid didn’t return. For as much as we love to hate our head coaches, Reid is one of the best in the NFL when it comes to weekly preparation. Game management? Ugh. Nightmare.

WFY: Where do the Redskins/D.C. fall in terms of Eagles/Philly rivalries?

@scrappled: I’ve always viewed them as interchangeable, although I suspect thousands of Philly fans would disagree. To me, the level of hate corresponds with the success of rivals at that particular time. If the Redskins were a constant playoff presence, they’d be higher on the list.

WFY: Do you watch Eagles games with the sound turned down and the radio turned up?

@scrappled: Oh, how I wish. I don’t get the Merrill Reese radio broadcast in my house, so I’m usually stuck with whatever garbage announcing crew Fox forces upon me.

WFY: Who are the standouts for Eagles media coverage?

@scrappled: Bleeding Green Nation and Iggles Blog are both excellent, and the traditional Inquirer/Daily News guys on Philly.com have always been good. We’re lucky in the sense that our beat writers and columnists are generally of high quality. The local sports radio? Yeah, not so much. Idiots leading idiots.

WFY: Of the 4 major Philly teams, which one winning a championship would mean more to you? To the city/region?

@scrappled: Oh, it has to be the Eagles, especially with the Phillies breaking the urse a few years ago. Only with the Phillies’ recent success has baseball crept into a virtual tie with football in the region’s heart. But over the course of time? It’s a football city.

WFY: I’ve heard that an upstart, the roast pork sandwich, is challenging the cheesesteak for gastronomical supremacy in the city of brotherly love. I finally had the latter at a Tony Luke’s in Sea Isle City and enjoyed it, but not as much as the former. Which side are you on?

@scrappled: I’m with you, cheesesteaks now and forever. And you know what? I don’t even care who makes it. I try to avoid Pat’s and Geno’s as a matter of convenience, but I’m not a cheesesteak elitist.

WFY: Based on all the time I’ve been around Philly fans, I know you guys want to be told by a Washingtonian how the Eagles uniforms should look. That crushes the current kit every day of the week and twice on Sunday, doesn’t it?

@scrappled: Totally. Love the old Kelly Green. I don’t hate the newer look quite
as much as you, but it’s hard to beat that classic kit.

WFY: Since the Skins and Iggles always split and the road team usually wins how sad are you going to be when the inevitable happens?

@scrappled: Over it. Don’t care. The difference between 7-9 and 8-8 means
nothing to me with our longshot chances of a division title being dashed by the inept Jets, so let’s get the higher draft pick. Die, Eagles, Die!

WFY: On the wings of mediocrity? I-G-G-L-E-S!

I’m going with the burgundy and gold here, they always split the series. Let’s say 23-14

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2011 Redskins vs. Eagles Game 1 Q&A and prediction with Kevin McGuire

This week, one of my favorite features, the guest prognosticator series returns! The Philadelphia Eagles are coming down I-95 to take on the Washington Redskins in a big NFC East matchup. Joining me this week is Kevin McGuire, a Philly sports fan who you may know from Examiner.com’s Penn State coverage and The Nittany Lions Den.

WFY: I guess you are finding out what Washingtonians already know — heavy is the head that wears the crown of “OFFSEASON CHAMPIONS.” What’s going on with “the Dream Team” right now? Also, was this past weekend the “worst weekend ever” (as suggested by the Philly Daily News) for Philly sports fans?

KM: Quite simply, the Eagles can’t tackle to save their lives right now, and Vince Young’s premature statement after signing with the team has unfortunately caught on everywhere even though everybody else on the team has tried to silence that idea, even as early as the day it was said. Andy Reid is under the hottest fire he has ever been in with fans and if things don’t start to turn around in a hurry it will only get uglier.

As for last weekend, yes, it was one of the worst weekends Philly has seen in sports in a long time. The way the Phillies went out was pitiful, and that’s being kind. There was no reason the Phillies should have lost to the Cardinals in a five game series, and ironically it was Cliff Lee, who signed with the team to win a World Series, who is most to blame for losing the series in my opinion. You can’t give up a 4-0 lead at home in game two. Enough said.

Forget the offensive woes for now. The Phillies lost games started by Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt in a five game series. That just is not acceptable for the standards this team established.

WFY: Is it still uncomfortable having Michael Vick as the starting QB on account of puppy killing past? Or his present being 1-4?

KM: I have long moved on from Vick’s past, but I won’t blame others for not. To me, he has paid his time according to the law and thus he has earned a right to doing what he is best at again. I honestly feel Vick is a much different person than he used to be, at least in the media and the public eye. He really has grown and matured and become the leader of this team the way he never did in Atlanta.

The Eagles being 1-4 generally pins a lot of blame on the quarterback, but Andy Reid is absorbing the brunt of any negativity surrounding this team right now for more critical reasons.

WFY: Andy Reid is one of the deans of NFL coaches, arriving in Philly in 1999. He’s got 5 NFC title game appearances and 1 championship, but no Super Bowl victories. Is the fanbase tired of the team never breaking through or is he on strong footing with the fans? Would your answer have been different a month ago?

KM: Yes, and they have been since that run of NFC championship game appearances when the team had Donovan McNabb in his prime, Terrell Owens and Brian Westbrook on offense and Brian Dawkins and Jeremiah Trotter on defense. And Reid’s press conferences have long infuriated fans because you know exactly what he is going to say every single time.

“I have to do a better job and put this team in a better position to win.”

“I take full responsibility for that.”

Well Andy, if you want to take full responsibility and put this franchise in a better position to win, that position may be seeing you no longer on the sideline. I’m the one who wanted to see Reid go before McNabb left, so I don’t think my answer would have been any different a month ago. I think after 12 years, we know exactly what Reid is capable of. He’ll turn around a team, but he won’t win you the big prize.

WFY: How is the Lincoln Financial Field Eagles gameday experience? How available are tickets to the general public? Why does that stadium have a complete lack of symmetry between sections and tiers? It looks silly. What’s so great about Crab Fries? Aren’t they just regular fries with an Old Bay-like seasoning? Seems like something you’d get in Baltimore.

KM: I’ll be honest, I have been to Lincoln Financial Field about 20 times now and have yet to see an Eagles game. Yes, it’s true. I have seen plenty of temple games and a couple soccer matches, and even a World Series parade but I have never seen an Eagles game. The stadium is kind of quirky in a sense and once they get the wind turbines on the roof (supposing that’s still in the works) it will look even funnier. Honestly, I don’t think the Linc is all that great. It was nice when it opened, but there isn’t too much to it if you ask me.

As for the crab fries, yes the formula seems rather simple but it is the cheese that makes the crab fries a game day necessity. I have been known to sneak out of a press box or two to grab an order. Chickie’s & Pete’s has made a business out of crab fries over the past few years and I think it combines a Baltimore flavor with that Philly cheese blend. Maybe it should be an I-95 thing.

WFY: Who is the greatest Philadelphia Eagle of all time, your lifetime or both?

KM: Without a doubt, Reggie White. The Minister of Defense played his last days as an Eagle just when I started to really follow the team, when I was still naive to understand the influence of free agency, but every time I get a chance to watch some old film of White and Jerome Brown on that defensive line I have to make sure to stop anything else I may be doing. If you have not seen it yet, make sure to catch that NFL Network special on White and Brown. It’s a shame they didn’t get to play together longer.

WFY: Do you watch Eagles games with the sound turned down and the radio turned up?

KM: Nope. Many Eagles fans love Merrill Reese. I can take him or leave him. And I’m no fan of Mike Quick as an analyst.

WFY: Who are the standouts for Eagles media coverage?

KM: I think Les Bowen (Philly Daily News) is one of the better guys following the team on a regular basis but any time Ray Didinger (CSN Philly) chimes in on the team I feel ten times smarter after hearing what he has to say.

WFY: Oh the 4 major Philly teams, which one winning a championship would mean more to you? To the city/region?

KM: To me, it will always be the Phillies. But if the Eagles ever win a Super Bowl the celebration would be pretty epic. They have the longest championship drought going in the city right now (1960) and while a Flyers Stanley Cup parade would be much warmer, the Eagles parade would be quite the event.

WFY: Midnight green?! That’s a stupid concept, much less color. Do you want the Eagles to return to their kelly green look? How about my mock-up?

KM: It took a while for me to warm up to the midnight green, but I kind of like it now. After seeing your mock-up and reminding me of the classic styles in this division, I find it hard to argue against what you’ve come up with. I’m on board. Make it happen! (It will never happen though because Mrs. Lurie is apparently not a fan of kelly green). I always prefer kelly green over midnight green though.

WFY: What Eagles jerseys do you have? If I were a Philly fan, I’d wear one of those green Phillies hats with my Iggles jersey.

KM: I have a midnight green McNabb which I bought on clearance after the Super Bowl loss a few years ago, and I have a 1960-style Brent Celek jersey scheduled to be delivered next week. Other than that, nothing. I can usually be found on Sundays wearing my Matt Schaub jersey actually. He graduated from my high school, a year in front of me so I kind of designated myself president of the Schaub fan club early on, when he played for Virginia.

WFY: There is a Rocky Balboa statue in Philly, but not a Joe Fraizer one. Why does a celluloid Philly heavyweight champion get a statue while the real one doesn’t?

KM: Because Rocky embodies the true spirit of the Philadelphia. Not well respected, hard worker, determined. We also have a statue of Kate Smith.

WFY: What are your top 3 cheesesteak establishments? I’m partial to Jim’s Steaks and Tony Luke’s.

KM: Tony Luke’s is tops, followed by Jim’s and I have recently gotten on board the Primo’s bandwagon. Pat’s and Geno’s are for tourists. skip them and go to Tony Luke’s.

WFY: Who wins on Sunday and why?

KM: I think the Eagles somehow manage to win one this weekend. I just can’t see them going to 1-5 and after everything that has gone on in the past few weeks they know what’s going on. Forget last year’s massacre of the Redskins in FedEx Field (and I’m sure Redskins fans remember that the teams happened to split meetings last year, Eagles fans should be reminded of that too). This is going to be much closer but if this Eagles secondary can’t stop Rex Grossman from beating them, then Andy Reid should have to take a taxi home.

WFY: I think the Eagles have too much talent and Redskins QB Rex Grossman is too suspect, so I’m going to say that hungry, desperate Eagles team wins this one. The Redskins just have a way of losing these kinds of games that would really help them.

Philadelphia Eagles 20
WASHINGTON REDSKINS 16

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The Philadelphia Eagles need to fix their uniforms

This week’s Washington Redskins opponent, the Philadelphia Eagles, are the outlier of the NFC East on several fronts:

  • The Eagles stadium, Lincoln Financial Field, is actually in the city the team represents. This, is a good thing and I hope that the Redskins move back to the District of Columbia someday, but they are currently in Landover (nee Raljon) Maryland while Dallas Cowboys play in Arlington, Tex. and the New York Football Giants play in East Rutherford, N.J.
  • The Eagles have never won a Super Bowl and its 2 NFL championships were all the way back in 1960 and 1948. The Redskins won titles in 1937 and 1942, as well as Super Bowls XVII, XXII, XXVI. The New York Football Giants won several titles as well as Super Bowls XXI, XXV and XL. The Dallas Cowboys won Super Bowls VI, XII, XXVII, XXVIII and XXX.
  • The Eagles have terrible uniforms, the rest of the division basically wears classic uniforms that look pretty much like they did in the 60s and/or 70s. Around 1996 or so, the Eagles ditched their classic kelly green and silver uniforms for “midnight green” and black.

Here is how I’d fix them:

How I'd design the Eagles green uniform

How I'd design the Eagles white uniform

  • Kelly green replaces midnight green
  • Midnight green is stupid and may actually be blue. Kelly green is timeless and distinctive.

  • Silver is promoted to secondary color
  • The Eagles had a lot of silver in previous uniforms. I added it to the sleeves and collars on home and away. The pants look a lot like the mid-1990s pants, but there is black border on both sides of the green stripes.

  • Black is demoted to trim
  • Black started creeping into the Eagles uniforms in the 1980s. It was fine as trim, but as a secondary color, it reeked as black for black’s sake, an unfortunate trend from the 90s.

  • Current helmet wings and sleeve logo are retained
  • The wings on the helmet and eagle head on the sleeve are pretty good designs, so I kept them. The black facemask is retained as it complements the wings and logo.

  • Block numbers
  • This is the NFC East, not some sunbelt division (or oddly enough, the AFC North), so block numbers are returned. There is a silver lining inside the black outline.

  • Socks
  • Since nobody wears their pants or socks correctly anymore, I figured the white socks with the green stripes with black trim would look better than solid green when players go with leotard look.

So, there you have it, a modern looking uniform with classic features. I am certain that Eagles fans will happily embrace a Washingtonian telling them how their football team should dress. Why do I even care? I have to watch the Eagles at least twice a year and I saw a fair share of midnight green when I was at Penn State — it is an awful color for a NFC East team.

Here is a clip of an early 1990s Redskins vs. Eagles game (as covered by Channel 4 in the UK!) which aside from the white shoes, looked great:

The logos are property of the NFL and the uniforms are modeled after stuff I got on Gridiron Uniform Database.

Here is how I would have redesigned the Washington Wizards uniforms (I wasn’t far off) and how I’d tweak the Washington Capitals uniforms.

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