Is it Christmas already? Because I had dreams of Philadelphia Eagles’ running back LeSean McCoy prancing through eight inches of snow dancing in my head Sunday night.
It wasn’t pretty the entire game though. There was reportedly eight inches of snow on the field that afternoon and fans could see the effect it had on the game. Come to think of it, it was actually hard to see the game period. The first half of the Eagles vs. Detroit Lions matchup was understandably awful. At the half, the score was a mere 8-0 in favor of the Lions. But that second half. Boy, that second half was a thing of beauty and will etch that game into history.
In the first quarter of the game, you could tell Philadelphia Eagles’ head coach Chip Kelly had set plays for the opening drives. But failed play after failed play showed that the conventional way of playing wouldn’t work in this weather. The snow had the Eagles’ offense looking like a rear wheel drive car trying to make it up a snowy driveway. They couldn’t get anywhere. If Chip Kelly called a run play designed to go to the outside the play would go nowhere because of the inability to cut hard enough. If Chip called a passing play it would end up terribly due to the conditions (i.e. Nick Foles’ first interception).
But this game was a blessing in disguise for Chip Kelly and the Eagles. It taught them to adjust how they played to get the job done. In the second half you saw more downhill, between-the-tackle running and receivers running streaks so they wouldn’t have to make breaks in their routes. This ability to adjust is key to the Eagles becoming an elite football team and it was impressive to see in Coach Kelly’s first year. Chip’s halftime adjustments were key in getting the W at home.
While the entire offense looked good in the second half, it was the record-breaking performance from Shady McCoy that caught everyone’s eyes. Shady finished the game with 29 carries for 217 yards and 2 touchdowns and broke Steve Van Buren’s franchise record for yards in a game. Not to mention he did it in eight inches of snow. Shady’s jersey and other game-worn items were sent to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
The Eagles have won their fifth straight game and this past game against the Lions was easily their most impressive. After seeing the Lions play on Thanksgiving I can honestly say I was nervous for this game. To come back from a fourteen point deficit in those conditions against a team of that caliber just shows the mentality and focus the team exhibits each time it takes the field.