The Eagles' 2013 season is over, and because of that, we all have the sads. Still, for one last time this season, we'll give out 10 awards.
The Runners Got Ran Award: The Eagles run offense and run defense
Coming into this game, the Eagles ran for 5.1 yards per carry. That was best in the NFL. The Saints allowed 4.6 yards per carry, which was 26th in the NFL.
Meanwhile, the Saints ran for 3.8 yards per carry. That was 26th in the NFL. The Eagles allowed 3.8 yards per carry, which was 4th in the NFL.
Total rushing yards: Saints 185, Eagles 80. Naturally.
The New Foundation Award: The last two draft classes
Obviously, the Eagles still have great players in LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson, and others, but the new young foundation on this team can be found in the last two draft classes, which were extraordinarily fruitful. I wrote about those players back in the middle of November, and the sentiment remains the same. If the Eagles can bang out another draft class like the last two, they could be one of the more formidable teams in the NFC for the next half-decade.
The Green Heart Award: The Eagles, from the end of the 3rd quarter on
When they were down 20-7, the Eagles looked like they were in deep trouble. But they battled back, and eventually took a 24-23 lead. That was big for such a young, inexperienced team. Obviously, they didn't hang on, but they showed heart.
The Stay Greedy Award: Billy Davis
"It's not good enough to lose in the first round," said Davis, "and that's what the beauty is of this team. There are a lot of great leaders, and this isn't good enough. Making the playoffs wasn't enough."
Yes. I approve of this mindset.
The Get More Greedy Award: Jeffrey Lurie
Lurie was asked what the next steps were for the team. "I think if we can get a first round bye next year, that would be the goal," said Lurie. "I think we will aim to win the division and get a bye."
What?!? A freaking first round bye? Was Neil Armstrong's goal to be the first man to eat 30 Chipwiches in an hour? Did Jonas Salk set out to cure jock itch? Did Christopher Columbus set out to merely find an easier passage to India? Did America just surrender when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?
HELL NO!!! The goal should ALWAYS be the same... WIN THE SUPER BOWL!
I mean... First round bye? That's the goal? Are you effing essing me?
The Kill Two Birds With One Stone Award: Patrick Chung
When the Eagles don't let Patrick Chung set foot in their facilities again, they'll accomplish two things.
1) They'll instantly decrease the number of crippling big plays allowed on defense.
2) I won't have to hear any more terrible Wang Chung jokes.
The "Are You Guys Kidding Me?!?!?" Award: Fans of the other NFC East teams
For those of you who have no idea who I was before I started writing for Philly.com, I used to have my own NFC East website. During my time running that site, I accumulated a fair amount of followers who are fans of the Cowboys, Giants, and Redskins, most of whom knew I grew up in the Philly area watching the Eagles. After the Eagles lost, many of them came out of the woodwork to talk crap to me on Twitter about the Eagles never winning the Super Bowl, choking, etc etc.
My rebuttals, organized in one convenient place:
Giants fans: OK, so you guys can confidently talk crap, seeing as you won 2 recent Super Bowls. Still, that must have been a rough season to watch, what with Eli Manning leading the league (by far) with 27 interceptions. You know how many Nick Foles had? 2. He had 2.
Cowboys fans: Your owner is a buffoon who thinks he's a legitimate GM, and will never fire himself because he's under the delusion that the team is in good hands under his guidance. Your team is in cap hell, and will be for the foreseeable future. Your star players and QB are all getting older, they're beginning to accumulate nagging injuries, and all they have to show for it in their primes was 3 consecutive 8-8 seasons in which they lost games that would have made them the division champs. You all point to a successful history replete with Super Bowl wins, and let me be the first to congratulate you on those successes of a time loooooooong since gone. But let's not ignore the fact that you've won ONE playoff game in the last 15+ years.
Redskins fans: Your owner is an ever bigger buffoon than the buffoon in Dallas. Your team just went 3-13, and you don't even have a 1st round pick to show for it. The QB you acquired for all those picks might not be that good after all, or fragile, or perhaps ruined by the a-hole coach who forced his own firing. Your defense is awful. Your OL needs to be almost completely re-done. Your playing field is an embarrassment. And... well, just... LolSkins.
Ahhhh, that felt gooooood (NSFW).
The No Mo James Monroe Award: Alex Henery
The 1820 re-election of James Monroe was the last election in which a presidential candidate effectively ran unopposed. In training camp this past offseason, Alex Henery ran unopposed, as he had no competition from another kicker. I'll stop short of putting this loss on Henery, but there's no way he won't have competition in camp next offseason.
The "Somewhere, Deep Down in Our Hearts, We'll Still Love You" Award: Eagles fans
Even with all the success of going from 4-12 to 10-6, beating the Cowboys in the Week 17 finale, appearing in the playoffs, and being excited about a talented young roster, it is still yet another season without achieving a Super Bowl victory. But we still love you anyway, Eagles.
The Slow Clap Award: Chip Kelly
2013 was an extraordinarily entertaining year of football. Thank you, sir.