Alright, first things first. In my previous post, I make mention of a strange phenomenon that seems to occur in Philadelphia sports – namely, that when our teams seem to be down for the count, and nobody has any hope left in them at all, they choose that moment to play their best and completely surprise everyone with a stunning revival. I entitled this phenomenon the Philly Hopeless Theory.
And quite frankly, that is the dumbest effing name ever.
Plus, there’s already a pretty simple name for such a phenomenon, one sitting right in front of my friggin’ face – The Rocky Moment. Duh. Obviously, this phrase/theory has been used before, but only the local Philadelphia teams should be able to lay definitive claim to it. For one, our teams regularly seem to have said moment. Plus, the damn movie was filmed in our town.
We get dibbs.
And how many times do you have a team that has two Rocky Moments in one season? Rocky Moment one happened after the Baltimore game, when not only the season seemed lost, but the tenure of Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb seemed doomed, as well. Then they rattled off three straight, before losing to Washington, sending the season back to the depths of hopelessness. Surely, we wouldn’t make the playoffs needing both a Tampa and Chicago or Minnesota loss.
But somehow, yet again, we weren’t down for the count.
The Football Gods smiled down upon us with losses by Tampa and Chicago, and then the Eagles handled their business. Rocky Moment two was so surprising because it seemed we were knocked out before the fight even began. Imagine if Rock had been super sick right before his fight with Appolo, and didn’t think he would be able to fight. Turns out, though, that his blood sugar was just absolutely crashing, and he ends up being diagnosed with Diabetes a week or so before the fight. Suddenly revived by his now daily doses of insulin, and thankful for the opportunity to fight Appolo at full strength, Rock heads into the fight chomping at the bit. That was Sunday. The Raiders and Texans were our proverbial insulin, and the Cowboys were Appolo’s face.
Bring on the Vikings!
Eagles record against current playoff teams: 4-2 (Steelers win, Giants split, Falcons win, Ravens loss, Cardinals win)
Vikings record against current playoff teams: 3-3 (Colts loss, Panthers win, Titans loss, Cardinals win, Falcons loss, Giants win, though game was meaningless for New York and they took out many of their starters in the second half)
Eagles record on the road: 3-4-1
Vikings record at home: 6-2
Take what you will from that – I think this will be a battle. A much more in-depth preview to follow later in the week.
What in God’s name happened to the Cowboys this season? With all of the talent they possess, it is downright inexcusable that they missed the playoffs. (Editor’s note: And all the more enjoyable because of it).
The Cowboys, and Jerry Jones’ plan for them, reminded me of a moment from last year, watching a Flyers game with two of my buddies. In fact, it was game one of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Penguins. We were watching at the Wachovia Center, which had opened so that fans could watch the game on the Jumbotron. Once it became apparent that the Penguins were going to win, my buddies started to get antsy. That, coupled with the rather copious amount of beer they had already consumed, made the idea of running out on the ice seem like a great idea. They talked about it so much that even the kids around us were starting to egg them on.
I decided I was going to see how serious they really were about the matter. Having interned with the Sixers the previous fall, I knew the layout of the Wachovia Center decently well.
“Alright guys, here’s what ya gotta do. After you run on to the ice and do your thing for a little bit, I want you to exit over there,” I said, pointing to the other side of the rink. “From there, bang a quick left and absolutely sprint to the first elevator you see, on the right. Once you get there, take it down one floor – that’s the basement – and take a left off of the elevator. Find your first exit, and I’ll meet you by the Spectrum. Oh, and whatever you do, don’t get caught – you’ll probably, at the very least, get a pretty friendly fine for your adventure.”
Now, I wasn’t really positive if the route I gave them was correct. Fact is, though I could always find my way around it, the damn place still confused me from time to time. But my directions achieved their desired result – my boys suddenly seemed hesitant.
“I mean – if we do this, do you think we could really get away from security that way?”
“Oh, sure, sure, but you better haul ass.”
“Hmmmm…I don’t know, I mean, I don’t wanna get busted. Plus, I doubt I could remember all of that.”
Suffice to say, they never went dancing on the ice. Why? Because, though it seemed like a great idea on the surface, once the details necessary to make the thing work became apparent, the whole ordeal suddenly seemed like a lot more trouble than they wanted to undertake.
And that, in a nutshell, is your 2008 Dallas Cowboys.
Sure, they have talent galore. But how do you manage all of the egos? How do you properly spread the ball around? Can you juggle distractions while doing battle in the vicious NFC East? Hey Wade Phillips, does this personnel being brought in really match the philosophy you are comfortable with? How about you, Jason Garrett? Is there any method to this madness, or are you just throwing a bunch of high-talent, high-ego players into a bag, shaking them up, and hoping they blend? It sure looked like a good idea, but was there really a plan in place in Dallas? And if there was, was it a good one?
See, my buddies thought a run on the ice would be a good idea, and a lot of the people around us were excited to see it happen. But when I broke down how complicated it might be to actually pull it off, they suddenly got cold feet.
Dallas has a bunch of playmakers, and figured they were building a contender. People everywhere drank the Kool-Aid, taken by their gaudy appearance. Many had them as one of their Superbowl contenders. (Editors note: Including a certain Pundit of Pattison you may be familiar with…) But they never seemed to gel as a team, and it cost them. Big time. Because with one swift butt-kicking on Sunday, they suddenly were left out in the cold.
Guess we’ll see ya next year, ‘Boys.