If a person were to take a step back and look at the fans’ and sportswriters’ reactions to Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Mark Sanchez‘ performance against the Green Bay Packers you would think had not thrown a single completion and given away the Super Bowl on a silver platter. As a Philadelphia Eagles fan, I get it. We are passionate about our team and we feel we have waited long enough for a championship. Especially after we watched former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donavan McNabb let one slip through his fingers in 2004.
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Against the Packers Sanchez threw two interceptions and fumbled the ball three times and two of those were lost. And one of those fumbles was just as much Eagles running back LeSean McCoy‘s fault as it was Sanchez’. The other two were definitely on him and only one of those were lost. He should have fallen on the ball instead of trying to pick it up.
For the sake of argument, (mine), let’s say he turned the ball over three times. Two interceptions and one fumble that was a high snap. And only one interception was clearly his fault and his alone. In the middle of the third quarter he missed Green Bay Packers linebacker Julius Peppers in the flat between him and his intended target Eagles tight end Brent Celek. That was a really bad pass on his part.
Nov 16, 2014; Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers linebacker Julius Peppers (56) returns an interception for a touchdown as Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews (81) tries to make the tackle during the third quarter at Lambeau Field. Green Bay won 53-20. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
The second interception should have been called for defensive pass interference. But it was missed and the game played on. So now we only have two turnovers out of three that were really Sanchez’ fault. And it didn’t help matter that both of those resulted in 14 points for the Packers. But the margin of the game was well beyond a 14 point spread so in reality, those turnover did not lose the game for the Eagles.
The Eagles defense is weak, especially the secondary. And Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is an elite quarterback and possibly the best in the game right now. He made plays against the Eagles that he’ll dream about for a long time. So when you mix a very dangerous, elite quarterback with a weak secondary what do you get? 53 to 20, that’s what.
So why is Sanchez getting hammered all week? Even if the four turnovers all resulted in seven points each for the Packers the Eagles would have still lost by five points! It’s all about perception. Until Sanchez wins a Super Bowl and maybe not even then he will always have the infamous “Butt-Fumble” following him around.
So, it’s time to lay off Mark Sanchez. He’s a good quarterback. He’s prone to turning the ball over but Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly was aware of that before the Eagles signed him. And it’s almost guaranteed he will improve by season’s end.
Besides, if the Eagles get rid of Sanchez who will be their quarterback? Eagles quarterback Matt Barkley? Now that is a thought that need not be imagined. I feel pretty confident that if Barkley were under center the Eagles would not win another game this season.
So before you throw Mark Sanchez under the bus, take a deep breath and remember that he had nothing to do with Rodgers throwing 346 yards and three touchdowns. That was the secondary’s fault.
So lay off Mark Sanchez. Let him settle in and play. Who knows, if the Eagles’ secondary ever gets their act together he may lead the Eagles deep into the play offs. He’s done it before with an inferior team and an inferior coach.
Either you love him or hate him, it’s not like the Eagles have an option right now.