DESPITE HOW they've looked the past few weeks, the Redskins are not the Cleveland Browns. They are capable of derailing the Eagles' late playoff push, which would really make for a sour Christmas week around here.

Washington will need some help from the Birds to do that, though. As dangerous as Clinton Portis and a solid secondary can be, back on Oct. 5, I thought the 'Skins were the better team along both lines of scrimmage. I'll be surprised if that remains the case on Sunday.

Some Birds fans seem to be worried about the weather, which looks cold and maybe rainy. It isn't like the Eagles have been winning by flinging bombs downfield lately, or anything. I don't see a bad-weather advantage either way.

Washington has dropped three in a row and five of six. The Eagles have won three in a row, and despite that awful November interlude, they're 6-2-1 in the nine games they've played since they last faced the Redskins.

Andy Reid is 7-2 at FedEx Field. *


Eagles 20, Redskins 13.