Philly sports picked a bad time to get interesting. I'm currently mired in new-grad-program work and cocktail parties, just started a new volunteer gig, and have been writing until 4 a.m. on the regular, so I haven't had time to write a couple of posts I would really like to. So instead, I'll give you the briefest possible gists of those theoretical posts:
1. Rumors are swirling that Andy Reid might step down as soon as tomorrow. The generally in-the-know A.J. Daulerio wrote that, and Mike and the Mad Dog supposedly mentioned it on WFAN today. The bye week is here, his team is bad, and his family is imploding. I would not be surprised.
I don't want to gravedance on the man, because he did resurrect this franchise, and for the simple fact that they've been relevant under him I am eternally grateful. But the writing is on the wall, and has been for a while. The 2004 team was the ultimate Andy Reid/Jim Johnson squad, and even it couldn't win a title. His philosophy has begun to tarnish. The league has figured him out. And, really, it's not hard. If Sunday's debacle in the Meadowlands winds up being Reid's last game, these stats are fitting:
Running plays called: 19. Buckhalter had 103 yards on 17 carries.
Passing plays called: 35. That includes 12 sacks, four scrambles (for a total of 4 yards), one fumble returned for a TD, and 15 completed passes. After calling 65% passes for the entire game, they had 76 net passing yards and zero touchdowns. And they lost to their division rivals to fall to 1-3.
For those of you who would argue that I'm letting McNabb off the hook, Donovan McNabb didn't decide not to move a tight end over to help Winston Justice, despite the fact that he gave up six sacks and innumerable hurries, and was obviously overmatched. McNabb didn't have a second all game. And yet they kept on throwing. I've never seen anything like it. Actually, yes I have -- two dozen times in the last three years. Enough.
2. The Phillies are facing a sweep. So much to say here. Jimmy Rollins is doing as much as one man can to carry this team. Chase Utley has done exactly the opposite, in one of the bigger postseason choke jobs I can remember. Manuel should not have pulled Kendrick. Now even if they manage a win Saturday, they have to start someone on short rest for the next game.
All of that said, I still believe the Phillies can win this series. I'm not saying they will, and I admit I'm a homer. But they don't hit lefties well, and now they don't have to face one unless there's a fifth game. Jamie Moyer is exactly the kind of pitcher who can stymie young teams like the Rockies. And it wasn't long ago these Phils won seven straight against a much better team than the Rockies -- the Mets -- to make it where they are.
Only one team -- the '01 Yankees -- out of 21 has ever come back from 0-2 to win an LDS. (Before some chowd blows his stack, the Red Sox did it in a seven-game series.) So I'm saying there's a chance.