That was pretty awesome, on a number of levels. Unfortunately my memories of the fourth quarter, as victory materialized, were rendered somewhat hazy by the continued drinking that accompanied the Pats-Steelers debacle.
So let's skip right to the Super Bowl. As Phil Sheridan of the Philadelphia Inquirer points out, the Patriots have had some bumps in the road on the way to becoming invincible. They never would have won their first championship were it not for "the tuck rule" non-fumble in the snow against the Raiders, helped along by some old-fashioned choking on the part of the silver and black.
I choose to believe the Eagles can win this game, though whether they will is another story. The key is going to be whether the offensive line can keep those awful white linebackers (Vanilla Johnson, Doucheski and Dradel) off McNabb, with their zone-blitzing and what-have-you. If the O-line protects McNabb, giving him time to read the formations, make the right decision and find the open receiver, we can win. And we have to get pressure on Brady, right up in that pretty boy's face. Hurt him. Stuff the run, obvs not easy with Dillon, and make those receivers beat you. I'm sorry, but Deion Branch and David Givens are not that good. Branch has some speed and can run after the catch, Givens has good strength. David Patten is a New York Giants cast-off. How the hell did he become good? A lot of the credit for their success rests with Charlie Weiss and the offensive scheme, how he creates space for those receivers to get open. And hopefully Weiss will be distracted at least a little by his Notre Dame shenanigans.
Another possible advantage for the Birds is that the Patriots, in game-planning, aren't going to be sure how much, if at all, Terrell Owens is going to play. So there's two possible versions of our offense they have to mentally prepare for. Could help us out. Maybe not.
It'll be interesting to see what Belicheck does against Todd Pinkston, whether he decides to maul him at the line of scrimmage or not. If T.O. plays, Reid has to find ways to match him up against Troy Brown. Brown can cover some receivers, but not T.O. The Patriots secondary is weak and ripe to be exposed by the long ball, so long as McNabb has time.
I'm going to pace myself with the Eagles commentary, otherwise, with two weeks 'til kickoff, I'll go out of my mind, but there will be more to come.