The Eagles will face FOUR teams this season that are coming off their BYE week:
The Steelers have their BYE on Week 4. They face the Eagles Week 5.
The Lions have their BYE on Week 5. They face the Eagles Week 6.
The Falcons have their BYE on Week 7. They face the Eagles Week 8.
The Redskins have their BYE on Week 10. They face the Eagles Week 11.
And if all of that wasn’t bad enough, the Giants have a Thursday night game Week 3, and then face the Eagles Week 4, which will give the Giants 3 extra days of rest/preparation. Then, later in the season, the Eagles face the Cowboys the week after Thanksgiving. As we all know, the Cowboys play on Thanksgiving every year, which gives them 3 extra days of rest for their next opponent. But guess what? The Eagles happen to play on MONDAY during Thanksgiving week, which gives the Cowboys FOUR extra days of rest/prep.
A two-point away loss to Pittsburgh after they had a bye week and in a game where Michael Vick fumbled away a clear 7 points doesn’t bother me. What bothers me is what this loss has the potential of snowballing into.
At the end of this season there will be 31 teams with millions of excuses as to why they weren’t the ones smudging their victorious fingerprints all over Lombardi’s football, but some of those teams might have more valid gripes than the rest. The Saints most of all, of course, because Rodger Goodell stole their coaching hierarchy and left them to rot at the bottom of the NFC South. But besides the Saints, due to either a scheduling oversight or purposeful scheming, the Eagles might have a better case to plead with the league than any other organization.
Facing FOUR teams coming off their byes, not including playing the Giants with three extra days to prepare and the Cowboys with four extra days to prepare? It’s outrageous that the NFL would allow one team to suffer through this magnitude of a disadvantage at the hands of the schedule makers. And it’s not like I hadn’t mentioned this before, it’s just that as we get into the meat of the schedule and begin to see the impact an extra week of healing, study, and practice time has on the outcome, the thought that all teams enter the season on level playing field seems like total fiction.
One road loss to Pittsburgh after they had a bye week and in a game where Michael Vick fumbled away a clear 7 points — still definitely doesn’t bother me. But if in this extra week of practice the Lions somehow figure out how to play defense and come into Lincoln Financial Field looking like contenders, it’s going to become obvious the Eagles’ bullshit schedule is in need of some blame this season.