If anything can be gained from Andy Reid’s “dismissal” of Juan Castillo, it’s that Reid knows it’s time for change on this Philadelphia Eagles team. The question is whether Reid can push the right buttons and make the right changes to get the Eagles back on track?
The Eagles defense ranked 13th in the NFL under Juan Castillo this year. That’s pretty average, but it’s not awful. But we do know that it’s more about the defense’s inability to hold leads late in games. Last season, the Eagles suffered five 4th quarter collapses. Add on two more the last two weeks, and you can begin to see why Castillo was let go. I will not lament Castillo’s departure, though I will always wonder what Reid thought when he put Castillo in the position to fail.
What is not so clear is why Reid chose to address the defense instead of his 31st ranked offense. The offense is not average, it’s bad. At least points wise. Firing the defensive coordinator will not do much to help the team’s offense, which has been out of sync and under-achieving so far this season.
I don’t have a clear answer for what Andy Reid needs to do with the offense to fix it. He could take play calling duties from Marty Mornhinweg, he could fire him or he could choose to sit Michael Vick. Aside from those three rather drastic options, the only thing Reid can do is hope his team begins to execute better.
Starting rookie Nick Foles in Vick’s place has the potential to send the wrong, albeit a very strong, message. While the time might come for that change, and as much as I personally would love to see it, that kind of move is reserved for when the season is lost, or at least in great danger of being lost. Not when you’re 3-3 and a game out of the division lead. On the other hand, Michael Vick has accounted for 13 of the Eagles’ 17 turnovers this season and that alone would be reason enough to bench any QB. You can say whatever you want about the offensive line’s play, but they are not responsible for Michael Vick’s poor decisions when throwing the ball and they are not responsible for him holding the ball too long and failing to execute at times. That’s all on Vick. Though I have to question the play calling as well.
And speaking of play calling, If you remember, Andy Reid used to call the Eagles offense. He fired himself from that job in 2006. If Andy Reid is going down with the ship, wouldn’t it make at least some sense for him to be at the wheel of said ship? Marty Mornhinweg has come up really small in a lot of important situations with play calling. And not just over the past two seasons. He has a long track record of it. Passing on running plays and running on 3rd and 21 are just the beginning. When will there be an end?
Change is needed for the Eagles to succeed, but I’m not sure the right button was pushed when Reid canned Castillo. There were others who were far more deserving.
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