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Wednesday's 60-second rant: Reid's Eagles not dead yet

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Posted Oct. 17, 2012 @ 4:30 p.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

Andy Reid said Monday he could tear up the whole operation in Philadelphia.

On Tuesday, he dropped the first hammer: Juan Castillo, on his staff for the past 14 years, was gone.

Who is next? Michael Vick? Marty Mornhinweg? An offensive line overhaul?

No one seems safe.

And yet no one should panic. History tells us the Eagles could be fine.

Nearly every eventual champion in recent years has gone through some early chaos or tumult, only to come out stronger, with a mere few examples.

A brief list:

  • Last season’s Giants were in a tailspin, losing 5-of-6 games through Week 15, capped off by a loss to the Redskins of all teams. They won the NFC East.
  • The 2010 Packers lost 3-of-4 games twice — once from Weeks 3-6 and the other stretch from Weeks 12-15. They were a sixth-seeded wild card team.
  • The fifth-seeded ’07 Giants limped into the postseason with two losses (including one to the Todd Collins-led Redskins) in their final three regular-season games.
  • The Colts lost 4-of-7 games entering the postseason in 2006, including a Week 14 debacle that saw them give up 375 rushing yards in a blowout loss at Jacksonville. Though they held on for the AFC South title, it looked like yet another Tony Dungy and Peyton Manning postseason letdown.
  • The ’05 Steelers were a No. 6 seed. They lost three in a row in Weeks 11-13. They also dropped three games at home that year.

That’s five of the past seven eventual champions. They all faced some sort of rough patch and overcame adversity to win it all.

The Eagles have that kind of talent and potential. At times, we’ve seen that potential come out this season. At no point have they displayed if for all four quarters, although the effort against the Ravens and the second-half execution against the Giants were two pretty good barometers to keep in mind.

There are fans who are ready to grab a pitchfork and chuck it all. Start rookie QB Nick Foles. Fire the other coordinator. Light a match.

My advice: Hang in there.

Best guess, I’d say that Vick gets a chance against his old team at home a week from Sunday. If he fails in that game — at this point, Reid will sacrifice lost yards for turnovers — then Vick might be replaced.

Reid can’t send the message that he’s hitting the reset button, and that’s what he would be doing by benching Vick before then. The coach already looks a little desperate in canning Castillo, although it probably had to happen.

The interesting irony is that Todd Bowles might be the best man to clean up this situation. He was part of the Dolphins’ midseason 180 — nearly flipping last season on its head, from an 0-7 start to a 6-3 finish. He can claim a 2-1 mark as the interim head coach, and that one loss was nearly a stunning victory at New England.

Bowles took a less talented defense than this and made it work. He has a chance to take an Eagles group that has been quite good at times and make it into a top unit. Do that, and Bowles will earn a legitimate chance to be a head coach somewhere.

It won’t be in Philly, though. Something tells me that Andy Reid is far from finished there. History offers its support, too.

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