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A Day Spent Watching The Scoreboard

Atlanta beat Tampa Bay in overtime on a Jason Elam field goal, ending a back-and-forth slugfest, an ugly game, really, and what it means for the Eagles is that they have to win their three games and get some help. Atlanta plays at Minnesota next week and then finishes home with the Rams. Tampa Bay hosts San Diego and Oakland. One loss by either Tampa Bay or Atlanta and three Eagles wins puts the Eagles in the playoffs.

This is fun stuff. The primary focus is on beating Cleveland and reaching 8-5-1, for without three wins the Eagles have a very slight chance of making the post-season. It would have been great momentum to have Tampa Bay defeat Atlanta on Sunday, but it didn't happen. The Eagles must take care of business against the Browns and then move on to play the fallen-on-the-ground Redskins, who lost to Cincinnati on Sunday.

Watching the scoreboard? You bet'cha. This is the time of the year when everything matters. Every play. Every bump and bruise. Every bounce of the ball. The Bucs were offensively challenged on Sunday without quarterback Jeff Garcia and, frankly, neither Tampa Bay nor Atlanta looked especially impressive.

Hope that the Vikings can summon up a huge effort next week and hold home court against the Falcons, or that the Chargers can try, for one week, to play to their ability in Tampa Bay. Boy, am I glad the Chargers came back to win in Kansas City. Maybe they will play with some meaning on Sunday.

I'm not going to talk too much about Washington, but listening to their radio broadcast sounded painful. Washington made so many mental mistakes and fell behind big in Cinncinati and just couldn't catch up. The Redsins committed a lot of penalties and one incredibly awful turnover as they were going in to score and they have lost their season just like that.

So the watching continues. The Eagles didn't gain control of their destiny yet. It would have great if it had happened, but there is nothing to cry about here. The Eagles need to win out. They need some help. A loss by either Tampa Bay or Atlanta will do the trick.

New York at Dallas is next. The main event comes soon.

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