Eagles Provide OpportunitySeptember 23rd, 2009 by Lee Eldridge
While I think it’s unlikely the Chiefs will travel to Philadelphia and pull off the upset, this should be an interesting and competitive game. If the Chiefs have an opportunity to steal a game on the road against a good opponent, this is it. Sometimes it’s not who you play, but when you play them. Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb is unlikely to play with his broken ribs, so the inexperienced Kevin Kolb should get his second start of his career. The Eagles offensive line is hurt. Running back Brian Westbrook is nursing a sore ankle. Their typically dominating defense gave up 48 points to the Saints last weekend. And Sunday marks the 2009 debut of Michael Vick. Though I don’t expect to him play more than a handful of snaps, it will be interesting to see how the crowd responds, as well as the Eagles.
The Chiefs offense moved the ball against Oakland, but they must find a way to put points on the board, avoid costly turnovers, and eliminate drive-killing penalties. It will be interesting to see how Matt Cassel continues to develop in his second game of the season. There was a lot to like in his performance last week. I liked his poise in the pocket, and his fire in the huddle. Larry Johnson ran tough. And Bobby Wade certainly played well at wide receiver given his limited time in Kansas City. I would liked to have seen them get Dwayne Bowe more involved in the offense. The play of the offensive line has been inconsistent. Hopefully as they continue to play together, they’ll become a more cohesive unit.
Oakland came into Kansas City with a strong running game. The Chiefs defense shut it down. Their were holes in KC’s pass coverage, but JaMarcus Russell was unable to exploit them. Eagles quarterback Kolb will certainly find more success throwing to his receivers than Russell. Hopefully the Chiefs can get some pressure up front against the Eagles injured offensive line and rattle Kolb into some mistakes. The Eagles like to use the wildcat formation. Should be a good test for our defense.
The coverage units are improved, but our return units remain mediocre at best. We’ve got one of the best punters in the league, and I am gaining confidence in our rookie kicker Succop.
Prediction: Eagles 20, Chiefs 13