And neither can their fans. If I hear one more dim-witted, irrational Philadelphia fan call for Andy Reid or Donovan McNabb's head, my head probably will explode. I love Philadelphia. I love the Eagles. I can never be considered a true Philadelphia fan due to my humble, eclectic upbringing. And I thank myself for that everyday so that I can be avoided being lumped into the true Philadelphia fans.
I get it. The city as a sports fan wears its heart on its sleeve. You express yourselves in colorful manners and voice your opinions without thinking. If Eagles fans had their way, Reid and McNabb would have been left behind years ago and our franchise would have been mired in mediocrity by now. But the fans don't see it that way. They're emotional right now. The Cowboys just beat them for the second and third times this season and ousted the Eagles from the playoffs. We're a little pissed right now, even myself. The difference is, I can still think with a clear head.
Case and point, Donovan McNabb is a Top 10 NFL QB in my opinion. Mike Vick or Kevin Kolb will probably not step in and be a Top 10 QB in the NFL. They can be good, efficient, maybe even win a game or two on their own, but they won't be a Top 10 QB. Not next year. The Eagles have no QB controversy unless you believe the stuff that ESPN pumps at you. Andy Reid should have never needed to address this issue unless the media brought it up (and they did this to drive the city of Philadelphia and Eagles fans crazy. On purpose. I can't prove it, but they've been doing it for years.) and he ended the matter quickly. In the words of the infamous Lovie Smith, "Donovan is our quarterback."
McNabb said something after the Week 17 loss to Dallas. He said "We showed our youth today." He did not take a shot at his young playmakers, but rather merely expressed that young teams will have bad games. Every skill position player for the Eagles (counting McCoy at RB) is 25 or younger. Think about that for a second, most of the Eagles core offensive skill players are entering their prime. This is a good thing. The Eagles are getting younger at O-line as well. Losing C Jamal Jackson really hurt this team during those last two games against Dallas and put McNabb into a survival mode in the pocket. Again, not the end of the world and I hope that Jackson is back for the start of next year because he is a fantastic player.
Secondly, the Eagles defense is also young for the most part. MLB Stewart Bradley was lost for the season in training camp and the Eagles as a unit never had any real cohesion for the entire season with all of the injuries and different lineups. Losing DC Jim Johnson didn't help either. Macho Harris replaced Sean Considine as the Eagles safety I open wonder aloud "WTF is he doing?" on a regular basis. The Eagles also seemed to be lacking a defensive leader. Why Brian Dawkins played this year in Denver is beyond me, he would solve my FS problem and leadership at the same time, and that hurt this team on the field and in the locker room, terrible decision by the Eagles front office (first time I've said that in years and we knew this at the beginning of the season).
Eagles fans, this young team is only going to get better. If you want to call for Ried and Donovan's head again, be my guest. You're entiled to do that. But think for a second of who is going to replace those two and if it's really an upgrade. Sure, Andy Reid doesn't run the ball consistently. I know, I wrote him a whole letter before the Chicago and he didn't do it in either of the two Dallas games. Maybe I should have wrote him again. Probably would not have changed the fact that the Eagles makeshift O-line couldn't stop Dallas' 3-4 scheme even with Jackson calling audibles for the O-line.
The last thing the Eagles should do right now is can McNabb. If you want to debate Westbrook, which would also be another dumb idea, fine. I'll hear that with an open mind. I'll take the debates of which back-up to have next year, Kolb or Vick or both. But I will not listen to the dumbfounded idea that Donovan McNabb should be sent packing.
Because he's going to get us to another Super Bowl. Andy Reid is going to coach it. And they're going to win it. Might be three or four years down the road with two more heartbreaking NFC Championship Game losses, but they're going to do it.
And if you give up on them now, you're throwing it all away because an 11-5 team lost a road playoff game.
And that would be a shame.