Fourth Quarter Woes the Fault of Reid

Written By Bob Cunningham On Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Reid watches McNabb throw too often in the fourth.

A lot is being made of the Eagles fourth quarter woes after their loss to the Cowboys on Sunday Night Football, but too much of the blame is heading Donovan McNabb's way.

While the quarterback does deserve some blame for an offense not being able to score, everyone is stopping one step too short. If you want to find the real culprit for the Eagles' offensive woes in the fourth quarter, look no further than Andy Reid.

More specifically, take a look at his play-calling sheet.

The problem with the Eagles in the fourth quarter is the lack of ball control. They don't focus on controlling the clock for the entire game, so they can't be expected to just turn it on when they need to. It's a mentality that the play-caller instills by committing to running the ball, and Reid never has or never will be that way.

Reid's offense is focused around putting up so many points early that it becomes impossible for the opposing offense to come back. He figures that the opposing team will have to pass to get back on top, but the defense's blitzing ways won't allow that to happen.

The problem is that if one key to that plan doesn't work out, he finds himself scrambling to adjust but just doesn't know what to do. He can't turn the offense's philosophy on its ear in the middle of a game because it's not built to do anything else, so he sticks with the same plays -- even though they're not working, and he knows it.

If he would just run more often earlier in the game it wouldn't be so difficult to play ball control at the end of the game.

It's certainly a problem that needs to be addressed, but it would take a full overhaul of Reid's offensive philosophy to fix it. I'm a personal fan of Reid as a head coach because of the way he can get players to overachieve and mold them into Pro Bowlers from nothing. However, his play-calling has hurt this team too long.

Let Reid coach, but let someone else call the plays.

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