With last year Super Bowl's contestants being offensive juggernauts with premiere passing games and this year's Eagles team lighting up the score board with the best offense in franchise history we got in about 100 debates on the run/pass ratio and play calling after putting up a paltry 16 points in our playoff loss.
Guilty myself, I was/am part of the "Gotto pass to score," camp and a fraction of BGN was on the "Good teams have running games," camp.
The 3 best offenses in the playoffs IMO were Pats #1, Eagles #2 and Green Bay #3. The Eagles and the Pats both had MVP candidates on their respective teams yet both were first round playoff exits. The dichotomy between the two top offenses and the Packers is defense.
Let's throw away all the defensive stats, if you're a hardcore fan of the NFL like most of us, we all know who the good defenses are in the league. Yeah Pitt and Baltimore was a high scoring affair, and yeah the Jets defense didn't help them out too much in the championship game, but let's be honest. Aside from the 3 teams aforementioned the other teams got in the tournament, and lasted in the tournament because of their defense.
The Packers can get after the QB and they even displayed a lot of Jim Johnson like blitzes sending in DBs and attacking Chicago's protection schemes. They have a good NT, a stud in Clay Matthews, and a pro bowl secondary. You have to gve Dom Capers credit for having his defense come and and take out PHI, ATL, and CHI all in a row.
Yea the Pack have a nice offense, but when they can't light it up on the scoreboard against solid teams they can rely on their defense to help them win games. This year, the Eagles couldn't say that. I can't remember the last turnover or game where we applied a lot of pressure on the QB.
The Steelers are much like the Packers. They have some weapons on offense to score points but when that doesn't happen they have Dick LeBeau dialing up an aggressive plays and those 3-4 LBs they have go out there and make plays for them.
Face it, the "defense wins championships," holds true about 75% of the time. Good teams make plays when they have to and IMO the Eagles defense didn't even threaten to make big plays down the stretch.
As much as I look forward to seeing Vick play with our young talented skill players next year, with a likely revamped line, I REALLY REALLY want to see more talent on our defensive unit with a coordinator that knows how to use it.
That way, we won't be arguing whether 8 runs or a couple more completed passes would've changed the game, we can say a good performance from an all around good team finally won us a Lombardi!