Two years ago, the Eagles were in the midst of an ugly three-game winless streak. One of those games was the forgettable tie in Cincinnati. That game was followed by a rout in Baltimore where Donovan McNabb was benched at halftime.
Then, the Eagles played a Thursday night game - Thanksgiving to be exact - and McNabb rebounded with four touchdown passes in a pasting of the Arizona Cardinals. The Eagles won three of their final four games after the Thanksgiving feast and made the playoffs.
Once again, a Thursday night game might be coming once again at the right time for the Eagles. After a tough loss to the Bears on Sunday, the Eagles are 7-4 and are tied for first place in the NFC East. The Texans come to Lincoln Financial Field on Thursday on the heels of a big division win over the Tennessee Titans. The Texans are only 5-6, but that's good enough to be one game behind first place in the division.
Head coach Andy Reid explained that the short turnaround allows his team to quickly move past what happened Sunday against the Bears.
"We got back into it yesterday and tried to hit it running. We're focused on the Texans," Reid said. "Some of the assistants did all of the breakdowns and computer printouts and tendency stuff for the Texans for the coaches so on the way back (from Chicago) they had all of the information. Once they got here, they had the ability of the film and were ready to go.
"I do know from having a couple of these that you're going to put in - in particular as a coach - a couple of long days and then you're going to ask the players today to incorporate a Wednesday, Thursday and Friday practice all in one. It's a lot to digest, but they get through today they've got the package. We'll do our mock game tomorrow and roll with it."
Reid said they key to preparing his team for another game in just four days is that "you can't overload them."
"There's just not enough time. There's not enough time to digest everything," Reid said. "You either use the things you didn't use last week or things that they're familiar with and then you go with it."
Two years ago, the Eagles used their Thursday night game as the spark to propel the team on a run that led to the NFC championship game. With three of the final four games of the season against the NFC East, could this Thursday night's game create the same response?
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 12:36 p.m., November 30