Welcome to the media machine that is the 2011 Philadelphia Eagles. All it took was one slip of the tongue from Vince Young and it was on. It would appear that this year, there really were sharks in the water (the media) and Vince Young provided the chum. The media bends, twists and context is of no matter to them, especially national media outlets like ESPN or PFT. Vince Young says he feels like he is on his dream team? Well damn, the Eagles must be egotistical, narcissistic fools who are going into the season overconfident and not prepared for the rigors of the season. That’s the argument PFT makes every time they snarkily mention the “Dream Team” at the end of their articles right?
We are the Miami Heat. Not in the sense that the team is filled with selfish, egotistical superstars that conspired for years to put together the “Heatles”. No, we’re only the Miami Heat in the sense that the media is trying to recreate the Heat. The Miami Heat were a ratings machine last season and you can bet your life the media is trying to get that going again. Not very much journalistic integrity involved but hey, welcome to modern day media where sound bytes and out of context quotes are used to generate views and page hits.
The media WANTS people to hate the Eagles because hate brings ratings. People love to see the teams and players they hate fail and they’re constantly looking for reasons to put the object of their hate down. So any chance a writer gets to slam the Eagles and pump up an inferior team, they’re going to take it. It generates attention.
Eagles : NFL Media :: Heat : NBA Media
I’m okay with the idea behind this (I am really helpless to stop it) but I’m not okay with it’s execution. I don’t think I’ve ever read more stupid drivel as I have in the past month or so. Whether KC Joyner is piping up about his aijrngfidjvoi + luck + random color ratio that proves the Giants are the favorites (link). Or Michael Lombardi is saying the Redskins will win the NFC East because they’ve shown the most out of any team in the preseason. Someone should really remind Lombardi that the Lions were 4-0 in the preseason before the year they FAILED TO WIN A SINGLE GAME. And I think a friendly reminder that the Redskins are starting REX FREAKING GROSSMAN may be in order. And then there are people like Matt Bowen who think that Rob Ryan is some sort of miracle worker that will lead the Cowboys to the NFC East Championship despite the fact that Ryan has never coached for a team that won a division championship and his resume’ isn’t exactly stellar.
And then there are the fans. Oooooo the fans. If you listened to opposing fans you would think the Eagles are about to be 0-16. Apparently Michael Vick, Jason Babin and Cullen Jenkins are all one year wonders. Nnamdi Asomugha is apparently overrated because he played in the AFC West. DeSean Jackson has no hands. Jeremy Maclin is on his death bad. Steve Smith will be lucky to ever walk again. Juan Castillo doesn’t understand defense (yes, PFT actually wrote a story on that). And DRC is a reject that the Cardinals couldn’t ship out of Arizona fast enough.
If people are going to look for a chink in the Eagles armor I just wish they would stop making stuff up because there really are big questions on this team. None of which have anything to do with a lack of talent the Eagles added this offseason. Anyone who denies that the Eagles improved is either a fool or they’re completely disillusioned. The biggest question about the Eagles is the turnover they’ve had this offseason. Yes, they’re obviously more talented than they were two months ago but can they gel fast enough to show this vast improvement on the field?
This offseason the Eagles have added new faces at these spots:
Defensive Line Coach
Offensive Line Coach
And the Eagles have 21 players on the squad who weren’t here last year, 8 of whom are in the starting line up and even more figure to get extensive play time. And in addition to the new players on the team, Todd Herremans, Jamar Chaney, Moise Fokou, Kurt Coleman and Nate Allen have all switched spots. That means that out of 22 starting spots on offense and defense, 13 are manned by different players than they were last year. Incredible, right? And the number jumps if you figure that punter, kicker and kick returner are all starting spots.
Will the Eagles come together fast enough? I think so. If everyone goes out and does their job there should be no problems. And even if there are hiccups those are going to be long gone by February.