CINCINNATI --Some rapid-fire thoughts after a night on the town in Cincinnati. Lots of Eagles fans here, maybe more than in any road city this season. The Eagles are about to play the Bengals in a game that I just can't fathom the Eagles losing. Oh, I know this is the NFL and I have respect for every team in the league, but I just don't see it here. I don't see the Eagles losing. No way. No how. I'm not even considering the option ...
- What will the Eagles do offensively to shake out of their early-game doldrums? Probably not a whole lot different, but when the defense struggles rushing the quarterback and has young cornerbacks who are eager to make plays, well, if the Eagles don't come out firing I will be very disappointed. Defensive end Antwan Odom isn't playing for the Bengals, and he is the best pass rusher on a team that doesn't get to the quarterback. Donovan McNabb should have all day to throw the football.
- Dhani Jones visited the team's hotel on Saturday night and looks healthy and proud to be a Bengal. Good to see him, atlhough I didn't have a chance to say hello. Dhani Jones, middle linebacker. The Eagles need to make him run sideline to sideline.
- Cedric Benson is a relaimation project and a successful one so far at running back for Cincinnati. I think the Bengals are going to try to pound the football and roll quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to the edges and see what they can do with the medium-range passing game. Establish the run, keep the chains moving and try to go over the top with the play-action game. The Eagles need to be aggressive from the get-go with the defense.
- You know who I want to see step up and make some plays? Victor Abiamiri. Too quiet since he has been on the field this year. Key guy. High draft pick who needs to make some plays right now in Year 2.
- It is the 30th Anniversary of the "Miracle at the Meadowlands" (ESPN said it, not me. I always thought it was "Miracle OF the Meadowlands," but, whatever) and ESPN is playing it up big. Some quotes the network released in advance of its Sunday feature:
Ron Jaworski -- "It was a miracle, it was a flat-out miracle, because all they had to do was take a knee."
Dick Vermeil -- "It was shock when it happened, and it's lasted forever."
Joe Pisarcik - "'We intercepted the ball from Jaworski, sorry Ron, your third one, and we ran out onto the field and I wanted to fall on the ball three times and go home, let's go have a cold one. It's Miller Time. The week or two prior he (Giants offensive coordinator Bob Gibson) sent in a couple plays and I got somewhat reprimanded for changing that play. So in the back of my mind that came up to me and I said, 'Joe, don't change this play you are going to get the same thing.' The snap came up a little off to the right and the ball hit on my forearm area."
Herm Edwards -- "I remember picking up the ball and when I started running it felt like everything was in slow motion."
- I actually just checked the history of the Eagles in the preseason to see if the team had come to Cincinnati between 1994, the last Eagles regular-season visit here, and now. Nope. Why do I think I've been here more recently than1994?
- So Marty Mornhinweg said during the week that running back Correll Buckhalter "should" play more and that the Eagles are going to "try to do that." We are gonna see, aren't we?
- I have to tell you that I don't see one matchup that the Eagles are lesser than the Bengals in. I'm being honest. It doesn't mean the game is going to play out this way, but I think the Eagles are a far, far superior team. Please, Eagles, play that way on Sunday. Spare us all some heartburn.