Ever since Vince Young uttered the phrase "dream team" at Eagles training camp this year, it's been a source of derision and ridicule for the Eagles. Anytime they seemed to struggle in preseason or made a personnel move, media and opposing fans would chuckle and repeat "dream team!' over and over again. However, after today's 31-13 destruction of the Ram at the Edward Jones dome, the joke doesn't seem as funny. This game played out exactly like the Eagles would have planned it as they built a lead with a dynamic passing game and then shut the door with a ferocious pass rush and stifling secondary.
The Eagles seemed to answer many of the questions critics had prior to this game. Would the defense with all it's new players and with first coordinator Juan Castillo be up to the task? They sacked Rams' QB five times, Juqua Parker ran back a fumble for a TD, they held the opposition to 13 points and knocked Sam Bradford out of the game.
The other big question? Was Michael Vick's 2010 just a fluke? Was it a mistake to reward him with the $100 million deal so soon? So far, it seems like last year was anything but a fluke. Vick threw for two TDs and recorded his 12th career 100 yard rushing game of the season, that's the most ever by a QB.
"It felt great to know that I can go out and play lights out," Vick said. "I trained very hard this off season and I feel better that I've felt before. I give a lot of credit to the way the situations turned out with the new CBA. It's given us a lot of time to rest and prepare ourselves. I feel good. I feel like I could play another four quarters right now."
DeSean Jackson also made his case for a big new contract with six catches for 102 yards and a TD. He also dropped two other would be TD catches, but all in all it was a big day for DeSean and certainly helped his case to get a big, new contract from the Eagles. He says that his performance proves that he won't let his contract situation affect his play on the field.
"I think it speaks for the heart and determination I have to play this game regardless of off the field issues" DeSean said. "I'm here to work, I'm here to play football and do it at a high level. Anytime I can go out there and perform and help my team win, I think it speaks for itself."
Late in the game, The Closer ™ went to work. LeSean McCoy just began gashing the Rams defense and capped off the final scoring drive with a 49 yard TD run. A fitting end to a game that started with a 47 yard TD from the Rams' Steven Jackson. McCoy finished the game with 122 yards on the ground, two catches and two touchdowns (one via the air and one via the ground). After the McCoy game I tweeted the following "Gashing the other team with the run in 4th quarter when you've got a lead is the sweetest feeling ever." And it really is.
All in all, this game played out exactly like the Eagles are built for. They built a lead with exciting plays through the air, then finished off the game by running McCoy down their throats and feasting on their QB as the Rams tried to catch up. You absolutely can not beat the Eagles this year if that's how things play out. This is exactly how they are built to win game this year.