Eagles vs. Colts: Quick Reactions From Week 9 Win

Written By Bob Cunningham On Monday, November 08, 2010

The Michael Vick Show is a sensation in Philadelphia.

-- As has been the case all season when he's played, Michael Vick was phenomenal. The Colts struggled to stop him when he broke the pocket and his passes were strong and accurate. Vick showed no symptoms from his rib injury and has shown once again that he's the clear choice to be the Eagles' quarterback for 2010 and beyond. Still, no turnovers this season.

-- LeSean McCoy, outside of his first 62-yard carry, was disappointing. He seemed to be running into blockers and not seeing the field as well as he usually does. If we remove the aforementioned carry, McCoy had an unimpressive 15 carries for 33 yards. He also contributed only three receptions for eight yards.

-- I was yelling all game for Owen Schmitt to get a couple carries, but it didn't happen. I'm not sure Andy Reid and Marty Mornhinweg won't utilize his size up the middle, but I guess just the fact that they use him at all is a good thing.

-- Jerome Harrison saw his first action as an Eagle, but it was uneventful. Harrison saw two carries for six yards, but just seeing him dressed is a good sign moving forward.

-- Once again, Brent Celek was nowhere to be found. He hauled in exactly zero receptions but did manage to drop the ball once. Celek has shown Pro Bowl ability in the past, and that's the only reason I'm not clamoring for his replacement.

-- Jason Peters did a pretty good job with Dwight Freeney. For the day, Freeney only had two tackles and wasn't much of a problem for Peters who blocked him one-on-one more often than not. Peters did, however, contribute his usual false start penalty.

-- Winston Justice had his head in the clouds. He jumped offsides, got called for holding, ran into Vick during one of his scrambles because he was chasing tail, and got beat a couple times. He's been good all season long, so hopefully this game isn't a warning sign of a complete meltdown.

-- The interior of the line was actually pretty good while Max Jean-Gilles was in. Again, let me stress, while Jean-Gilles was in. Once he was out of the game and Nick Cole entered, the entire line seemed to fall apart. Cole is a liability but, for some reason, the team still prefers him over Reggie Wells.

-- I think the only person happier to see Vick back in action than me was DeSean Jackson. The two hooked up immediately for a touchdown and Jackson finished the day with seven receptions for 109 yards and a touchdown. Jackson also had 20 yards rushing including a key first down.

-- Jeremy Maclin makes me want to pull my hair out. For all the talent he clearly possesses, he sure can look like a pansy. The way he will simply stop and brace for impact is going to get him killed. Didn't anyone ever teach him the way to avoid injury is make yourself harder than the thing you're hitting?

-- Once again, Jason Avant was largely unseen. After a big reception for 34 yards, he only caught one more ball for seven yards. I really expected him to be a big contributor this year, but so far his numbers have just been okay and he hasn't made the big plays he did last season.

-- Trent Cole got robbed of a strip-sack on the single worst call I've ever seen, but still managed to notch a sack and continue his fantastic season. If Cole would work on pulling a second move rather than just running past the quarterback, his season could be even better.

-- Brandon Graham again contributes nothing. He pressured Manning a few times, but that was it. A once-promising rookie year is looking more and more like a wash.

-- And the one who suffers most is Juqua Parker. He doesn't have the endurance to be the starter anymore but with Graham's quick regression there is no other option. He's doing about as well as can be expected, however, and has stepped up big time this season.

--Darryl Tapp contributed his second sack of the season and saw a lot of time in Sean McDermott's Joker role. Given all that they gave up for him, it would be nice to see him on the field a lot more often.

-- Brodrick Bunkley and Mike Patterson did a decent job of playing the run. But, as is always the case, neither got pressure on the quarterback when they were on the field. Both guys just need to start bulking up and give up becoming pass-rushing tackles.

-- Antonio Dixon got another start, even though Bunkley came back, and once again helped the defense shut down the run. If you're wondering why the team has been so stout against the run all of a sudden, you can stop wondering. It's because of Dixon. He needs to be the starter permanently. Bunkley and Patterson can rotate next to him.

-- Come to think of it, Trevor Laws should probably see some time too. The guy played with an attitude and made a couple nice plays in the backfield. Hopefully he continues his progression and gives the Eagles one of the best defensive tackle rotations in the league.

-- Ernie Sims finally made a big play with a key sack of Peyton Manning. For being a "shark in the water," Sims has been a disappointment but probably had one of his better games this week against the Colts.

-- Speaking of disappointments, Stewart Bradley continues to be one. He refuses to turn his head and look for the ball when in coverage which leads to pass interference penalties and missed opportunities, and still can't shed a block to save his life. Don't let the stats fool you, Bradley is still playing mediocre at best.

-- Did Moise Fokou see the field? I know the team was in the nickel most of the time, but I'm not sure he ever stepped over the thick white line.

-- There's not a whole lot to report on Nate Allen. He got injured early and was taken into the locker room for X-rays, but they were negative. If he can't return next week, Kurt Coleman will take over as the starter by default.

-- Speaking of Coleman, he did a very nice job of filling in for Allen. But if that supposed unnecessarily rough hit on Austin Collie results in a fine he might not want to see the field again.

-- Keenan Clayon played in his first NFL game and impressed right away. Clayton was supposed to just be an extra special teams body, but the injury to Allen forced him into action at safety, where he played at Oklahoma. He had a key pass breakup, but a garbage penalty (noticing a pattern?) wiped away a great effort.

-- Quintin Mikell was his usual solid self. I get the feeling Mikell is the glue holding together a young and inexperienced defense.

-- In his first NFL start, Dimitri Patterson was impressive. Despite going over 80 yards receiving, Reggie Wayne was largely a non-factor because of Patterson. He did a good job of putting himself in Wayne's back pocket and was a sure tackler. The only question now is whether or not Ellis Hobbs retakes his starting spot.

-- Asante Samuel didn't have a single tackle, but I'm guessing two key interceptions make up for that. Samuel's first pick came early in the game and led to a field goal, and his second pick iced the game for good. After running in a circle a time or two Samuel fell over and it was time for the victory formation.

-- Keeping with the theme, Joselio Hanson had a good game in the slot. He allowed some passes across the middle that he probably shouldn't have, but he always did a good job of immediately making the tackle and not allowing the big play.

-- Sav Rocca might have hurt his Pro Bowl chances a bit today after shanking a punt for a wretched 18 yards. Rocca seems to struggle in the cold, but he improved as the game went on and is hopefully ready to turn a corner.

-- At one point in the game, David Akers was the team's only source of offense. Akers contributed 14 points via four field goals and two extra points, and also booted three touchbacks to continue an impressive season sans the Atlanta game.

-- It really all came together against the Colts as even the coverage units were as good as they've been all season. Akeem Jordan, Eldra Buckley, Moise Fokou, Jorrick Calvin, Kurt Coleman, and others are finally starting to embrace playing special teams.

-- Since Super Bowl 40, this was the worst games I've ever seen for officiating. They consistently missed calls, blew calls, didn't consistently make calls, and failed terribly on their interpretations of the rules. The unnecessary roughness penalties were especially poor and will likely be a topic of conversation moving forward.

-- As far as play-calling, I still hate the way McDermott calls his defense. But, I suppose it worked today even though the Colts made a push in the fourth quarter. McDermott goes into a soft coverage once the team hits the fourth quarter with a lead, and it could lose them a few more games moving forward.

-- Are the Eagles legitimate Super Bowl contenders with Vick at quarterback? Maybe, but there are still a lot of weak spots. They still kick too many redzone field goals, and the defense still gives up too much to the tight end. If the young talent can rally around Vick, a Wild Card berth is certainly not out of question.

-- Next week is the second game against the Donovan McNabb-led Washington Redskins, and it's a game the Eagles must win for one simple reason: they're the better team. If they're going to be taken seriously, they need to take care of the teams they're expected to beat. I just hope their cardio-vascular endurance is up to snuff.

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