I watched the first quarter of last night's Giants game with an Eagles fan, and was appalled to hear "I'd get rid of McNabb first chance I got." Eagles fans are incredible. They have a QB who takes them to 5 NFC Championship Games in the last 10 years, and they hate the guy. He's a great leader with a big arm who finally has the supporting cast he deserves. Philly will always be a defensive team, but how can you hate on Donovan McNabb?
As a Giants fan, of course I hate him. He's killed the Giants for years, and now has 4 in a row against us. But that's exactly why Philly fans should support him. Donovan deserves better, as much as I hate to admit it. And to make matters worse, the same fan was calling for more snaps for Mike Vick. Vick?! Really?! Fine, Eagles fans, Donovan McNabb could play QB for the Giants any day. I can't speak for all of us, but I think we'd love to have a QB like that.
Not that Eli had a bad game last night. He threw for a career high in yards, but his 2 fumbles didn't help us a whole lot. Still, Eli led an offense that put 38 points on the board and still didn't win the game. He accounted for 3 of our touchdowns. I can't pin this one on him, as quick as some will be to do so. This was yet another defensive meltdown.
And my final observations: Kevin Gilbride thinks he's the offensive coordinator of the Eagles. This has been picking at me for a long time, and I finally put my finger on it last night. Gilbride thinks he's running the Philadelphia offense: a pass-first (and second and third), run almost never, rely on the big play offense. See, if he were coaching for the Giants, we would be a run-first, smart pass calls, clock control offense that trusts the defense to do well. Granted, the defense hasn't held up their end of that bargain in '09, but they haven't spent a lot of time on the bench either. Every Giants drive is either a quick punt or a quick touchdown. We're throwing a gassed defense out there every fourth quarter...no wonder we can't hold a lead.
I'm in no position to say that the Philadelphia offensive system doesn't work; just look at what the Eagles have done the last, oh, 8 years. The difference is that the Giants don't have a rocket-armed QB who gets the ball to blazing fast WRs. Our receivers are small and quick, not straight-away fast. They're better on short routes and making yards after the ball is already in their hands. Plus, we don't have small, fast, pass-catching running backs to run the screen game the way the Eagles do. We have a 6'4" 265-pound back who is being used incorrectly. He runs best up the middle, behind an offensive line blocking forward, not sideways. Gilbride is running the wrong offense with the wrong personnel.
That, plus an overmatched defensive coordinator who makes no second half adjustments and is so afraid of the big play (which they give up anyway) that he almost never calls a blitz, is why we can't beat Philadelphia. We were outcoached last night, straight up.