1. If you’re a Philadelphia Eagles fan, Super Bowl 52 wasn’t an outlier.
Some of you are nodding your heads in agreement as we speak. What went wrong with this Eagles and Schwartz marriage is a topic that we all could argue over until next offseason, but for many we all go back to one night, February 4th of 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
That’s right, Super Bowl LII. The Eagles’ defense made you proud on about four New England Patriots drives that night, and a lot of what went right had nothing to do with anything Schwartz was doing.
Rodney Mcleod stopped Brandin Cooks on an early second-quarter third-down attempt with a power-bomb that would have made WWE fans proud, and the New England Patriots clanked a field goal off of the left upright on the next play. Brandon Graham scored the most famous strip-sack in Super Bowl history, and in the Pats’ final drive, time just ran out.
Philly gave up 33 points that night. Thank the Good Lord in Heaven that they scored 41 points of their own.
The Super Bowl wasn’t an outlier though. It was a foreshadowing of things to come. Since that bitter-cold night, Schwartz has done things schematically that we’ve only seen done in EA Sports’ Madden. There’s that thing where the secondary hangs out at the first down marker. If you’ll remember, that cost the ‘Birds’ an early-season overtime tilt versus the Tennesee Titans in 2018. Most recently, there was the decision to line up linebacker Nathan Gerry, perhaps this team’s worst defender regardless of position, across from Chase Claypool in Week 5 of 2020’s season, a man who had torched the Eagles defense all day. You all know how that turned out.
There are other examples of defensive apathy under Schwartz, but they’re too painful to discuss. You all get the idea though. Maybe Schwartz has lost his touch. Maybe he never had it, but here’s what we can say. It’s hard to understand what he’s thinking sometimes.