The Eagles looked exactly like the team we thought they’d be coming into the season in their 34-7 win over the Cowboys last night.
That’s not to say they were flawless (more on that later), but they won they way the team was constructed to win.
They got out to a lead against a defence that simply couldn’t contain all their weapons. Then they sat back as the Cowboys futility tried throw against their Pro Bowler-laden secondary.
It was a dominating effort, and a result that should have the best teams in the league worried that the Birds will be a force come playoff time.
But does this mean that Philly’s woes are behind them?
Not by a long shot.
The Cowboys didn’t test the Eagles’ two primary weaknesses.
Instead of simply doing what other defenses have done to stifle Vick — blitz him, blitz him, blitz him — Rob Ryan decided to try and stop the Eagles with his own plan.
He played two safeties 25 yards off the ball and relied on Demarcus Ware alone to pressure Vick.
It didn’t work, and after the game Ryan admitted to being out-coached.
On offence, the Cowboys were actually successful at exploiting the Eagles weak run defence, averaging 8.5 yards per rush. But as the Eagles’ lead grew, Dallas stopped running entirely, and it killed them.
Other teams, specifically the Giants and the 49ers, refused to be baited into abandoning the run after going down by double-digits against the Birds. That’s what Dallas should have done.
Bottom line: The Eagles are back on track, and the NFL should fear that. But the faults that we saw exposed during the first six weeks of the season have not been fixed yet.
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