Let’s put in perspective just how catastrophic this was.
The NFL was formed in 1920. The league has crowned 98 champions. The Eagles were the 98th.
None of the first 97 had ever lost a regular-season game this badly.
That’s on Doug.
There are a lot of reasons a team that was unstoppable a year ago — the Eagles won 16 of 18 games that they tried to win — is now 4-6 and has lost five of its last seven games.
There are a lot of reasons the Eagles went into the Superdome Sunday and left with a 48-7 loss.
There are a lot of reasons the Eagles are averaging a touchdown less per game than last year and have just seven takeaways all year.
Doug Pederson got the credit last year when the Eagles had a dream season, and with this season crumbling to pieces in front of our eyes, we need to be honest about where to assess the blame.
It’s on Doug.
We can blame Howie Roseman for not doing a better job replacing some of the guys who left. We can blame Mike Groh for being a pale imitation of Frank Reich. We can blame Carson Wentz for not being able to make big throws at big moments when the Eagles need them the most.
But when a collapse is this complete, when a team is this unprepared, when an offense is this lifeless, when a season turns out this grim, it points directly at the head coach.
The Eagles have been shut out in eight of 10 first quarters this year, and that’s a team that’s just not ready to play football when the ball is kicked off.
It’s way too easy to just chalk this all up to the Super Bowl Hangover. Oh, this happens to every Super Bowl winner.
But that’s not the case. Only six teams in history have ever won a Super Bowl and then had a losing record the next year. Nobody since the Buccaneers in 2003.
Before that? The 1999 Broncos, but John Elway had just retired, which kind of explained that. Before that, the 1988 Redskins.
That was 30 years ago.
Super Bowl champions don’t do what the Eagles are doing. Because there’s a reason they won a Super Bowl a year earlier. Elite players and coaches.
I still think the Eagles have a ton of talent on offense, and they’ve been decimated by injuries on defense but they never really caught up to the Eagles until Sunday at the Superdome.
This is a talented team that’s playing horribly, and that’s on one person.
Doug had all the answers last year. Everything he did, everything he said. I’ve never seen a coach have such a magic touch with playcalling, handling a team, setting the tone for the week.
Whatever crisis came up, Doug and his guys just laughed it off and then went out and won by 24 points.
Now, Doug just has no answers. The same things keep happening, and so far he hasn’t shown any indication he knows what to do. How to stop it. How to fix it.
The same slow starts, the same lack of preparation, the same late-game collapses keep happening over and over and over.
And that magic from last year just isn’t there.
The Eagles made history last year, and nobody can ever take that away.
Now they’re on the brink of making history again, this time as one of the worst Super Bowl teams ever a year later.
And when Doug’s players and coaches and staff look at him for answers, they’re seeing someone who doesn’t have any.
And that’s the scariest thing of all.
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