And so it’s come to this…
The Eagles held players meetings over the week to iron some things out before what could be a crushing game in New Orleans. What this means, of course, is that the Eagles are in full-scale “Oh shit” mode. Players only meetings are never a good sign because it likely means that a few things. The first of which being half-assing.
These meetings are a way for guys to call someone out in front of the team and try to get their heads right. It’s practically a public spanking. I would figure that the Danny Watkins and Jason Babin, in particular, got a nice whacking. Babin yucks it up on the sidelines when he and his unit have been the biggest disappointment on the team so far. Not to mention that he hasn’t had a sack since week three.
Watkins has been slow and unsure of his assignments. At this point rookie Dennis Kelly has a chance to surpass him at right guard with a solid game on Monday night. For a first round draft pick, Watkins surely hasn’t looked like it.
The other issue from the players only meeting is that it means this team has no confidence. After getting thrashed by Atlanta in what many players described as an embarrassing performance, the Eagles feel like their high school sweetheart just dumped them for the janitor.It’s the same reason that players are now anonymously speaking through the media. Simply put, that doesn’t happen in a stable locker room. It’s obvious this team is on the verge of tearing itself apart if they don’t get their act together soon.
However, the Saints defense could be the fat girl that gives them their mojo back. New Orleans has the 30th ranked pass defense in the league-allowing over three hundred yards per game. If the Eagles are unable to put at least 24 points up on the board against their terrible secondary, then this team is as good as dead long-term.
Michael Vick will need to be precise if that’s going to happen and he should be coming into the game with a clear(er) head. It’s being reported that Vick met with Andy Reid in what has been described as a “heart to heart”. I imagine that personal issues were discussed, tears were shed, and hoagies were split 70-30. However, he’ll still be under great pressure to perform, primarily meaning no turnovers.
When it comes to Monday night, the biggest thing to watch for is the type of mentality that this team comes out with. If they go out there and punch some people in the mouth then this team is still a contender, even if they lose. Don’t forget that they started by winning some grind out games against the Ravens and Giants. This team started the year with a great amount of fight in them. If they start out flat, the season will become an eight week descent into the gutter.
The question is, what kind of heart does this team have?