In The Bandwagon this week, Ryan (@Petzrawr) writes a letter to Andy Reid.
You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
Well crap. Here we are again. I really want to write a positive column one of these days. But this Eagles team is destined to be as depressing as hell at possibly the worst time for me. Like most of you, I’m bummed out about the Phillies early exit from the playoffs. I’m jealous of the people that are over it already or are capable of looking ahead to next season. I am not that kind of person. I had to work an early shift on Saturday morning. I didn’t talk to anybody. I couldn’t drink any coffee because my mug has a giant Phillies logo on it. Around 3 PM, someone asked me about the game. “I don’t want to talk about it,” was really all I could say. It sucks. This all sucks. So baseball is over and done with (I can’t bring myself to watch the rest of the playoffs.) and the NBA season is probably going to get wiped out. If it weren’t for Spike, I wouldn’t care about that either, but he actually got me into the Sixers. I was looking forward to basketball.
Sports stuff aside, I’m most likely losing my job at the end of the month so it has been kind of a shitty couple of weeks for me. I look to sports for some escapism. And since I don’t give a damn about hockey, all I have left to obsess over is football and the Philadelphia Eagles. A team that seems like it’s trying its best to really twist the knife right now.
I had all but tuned the Buffalo game out by the end of the first quarter. By halftime, I was doing the dishes and taking a shower. I felt that awful about it. I jokingly asked Twitter upon getting out of the shower “How many turnovers did I miss?” Approximately 3 nanosecond later, Vick uncorks a pass from his own 2 yard line to Jason Avant who proceeds to make the catch and then fumble the ball.
Then there was the rollercoaster fourth quarter that doesn’t really need much rehashing. You know the story: the Eagles start to mount a comeback only to be foiled by turnovers and penalties. It sucked. It sucked hard. Of all the tough losses this season so far, this was probably the toughest. (Although I think I’ve said that three weeks in a row now.)
I took pretty copious notes during the game. I’m trying to be accurate, you see. I used to do some freelance sports writing for a few papers back home, so I’m trying to knock the rust off of those tools and actually be a writer again (How am I doing?). This time, I’m not trying to be objective. The Bandwagon is about being a fan. I want this team to win. I did my best to help, too. I’ve been wearing the same Eagles shirt every Sunday since week 2. This week, I decided not to wear it; maybe the shirt is jinxed! Nope, it didn’t help. I know! I’m as shocked as you are!
Take On The World
Week 5 sucked to sit through, but all is not lost. It could have been a statement game, but it was hardly a “must-win” game. The Bills are the surprise success this year and a Birds win could have been the emotional shot in the arm the team needed. But it’s not exactly the kind of loss that you can point to at the end of the season and say “That game could have made the difference.”
After all, in a weak NFC East, the Eagles could still take the division by winning eight or nine of their last ten games. It’s a tall order for sure, but it could still happen. But If the Eagles have a hope of making the playoffs still, they’re almost certainly going to have to win out against their divisional foes. Which transitions neatly into…
Week 6 on the road in DC against the Redskins is as close to a “must-win” game as you can get in the middle-third of the NFL season. The ‘Skins are sitting on top of the NFC East and are playing above expectations right now. They seem destined to come back down to earth sometime because, well, they’re the Redskins after all. A divisional win would do a lot to put the 1-4 Eagles back on the right track to a post-season berth. Week 7 is the Eagles bye week, and it would certainly calm a lot of nerves both on the team and the fan base to hit the bye on a high note.
This last part here is for Andy Reid. If you’re not Andy Reid, please don’t read it. Thanks.
Hey Andy. How are you? You don’t know me, but my name is Ryan. I’m a new Eagles fan. I haven’t been around for your other 12 years coaching the Eagles so maybe take this with a grain of salt. But I’ve noticed something over the past couple of weeks and I wanted to take a second to talk about it with you. I’m sure you’re aware that the fans and media in Philly have been calling for your head. They’re saying all kinds of bad stuff about you. I don’t really know if they’re right or wrong. I don’t really know that much about Juan Castillo and whether or not making your offensive line coach your new defensive coordinator was a good idea (although on the surface is sure doesn’t seem like it was).
So, yeah, times are tough. I know it’s stressful when your job is on the time. But let me make a suggestion to you: Philadelphia is a tough city in which to be a public figure as you’re well aware. Keeping that in mind: maybe don’t be such a dick to everybody.
Yeah. You’re kind of a dick to people in the media. I know that because they all tell us about it on Sundays and Mondays. One national columnist compared you to Kim Jong Il in terms of how much media access you allow. That’s… dude, that’s not a good way to run things. You know your job is pretty much on the line, right? And you know you have a pretty sweet gig, right? I mean, maybe just back off a little bit.
Your post-game interview shtick is getting pretty old. I know it sucks to have to talk about how you just lost a game, but do you realize they show that on TV now? We can see it. We can see you acting like an asshole. And that doesn’t make us want to keep you around either. I don’t mean to speak for all of Philadelphia here, but you’re clearly losing the press. And the press controls what we see and hear from you and the team. So if you act like a douchebag to them, they’re going to tell us that you’re a douchebag. And it doesn’t matter if you have the second best winning percentage among active coaches because us common people have pretty short memories.
I’m not going to be like a lot of people out there and pretend like I think I could do your job, because I can’t. But although I cut my teeth in the newspaper business, I’m a salesman now. And you have to sell yourself to people. If you sell yourself to people, you’ll get more people on your side. It’s like my grandma used to say “You’ll catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” (Full disclosure, my grandma didn’t actually used to say that. But if I’m friendly to you while I lie to your face, you’ll be more likely to believe the lie.)
That’s all I got, Andy. You can take my advice or leave it. It doesn’t matter to me. I just want you to be happy. Well, that’s not true. I just want the Eagles to win the Super Bowl. Everything else is secondary.
PS: I hope you made Juqua Parker do an absolute shit-load of pushups for jumping offsides on Sunday. That was bullcrap of the highest magnitude.