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Weapon X Mailbag: What’s the worst Eagles regular season game you can remember?

Plus: lots of apathy

Seattle Seahawks vs Philadelphia Eagles - December 5, 2005 Photo by Drew Hallowell/NFLPhotoLibrary

The season from hell rumbles on. Let’s get to the questions.

@MattGrumbrecht: What is the worst regular season game you can remember and why?

December 5, 2005. Week 15. Seahawks at Eagles.

The Birds were defending NFC champions, but were 5-7 with Donovan McNabb lost for the season. Terrell Owens had been deactivated and sent home. Eagles fans were watching the end of the first act of the Andy Reid era. That streak of four-consecutive NFC Championship Game appearances was about to be over.

The Seahawks, meanwhile, were on their way to becoming that season’s NFC champions behind an MVP campaign from running back Sean Alexander, who would finish the season with 27 rushing touchdowns.

The Eagles just got obliterated. 42-0. It was a snowy mess on Monday Night Football. I immediately think of Lofa Tatupu’s pick six. It’s burned in my brain. Part of my childhood ended that night.

Koy Detmer and Mike McMahon combined for five turnovers filling in at QB. Yikes.

Know what made matters worse? The Eagles retired Reggie White’s number at halftime. Reggie deserved better than that pathetic performance. They also committed a major fashion no-no and wore black jerseys with white pants. Disgusting all around.

Good thing the Eagles don’t have any games coming up that feel like that one. It’d be a damn shame if we all had to endure that again.

@PatrickO_Leary: Thoughts on Zach Ertz moving forward?

I think Zach Ertz has played his last meaningful game as an Eagle. I wouldn’t be shocked if he didn’t suit up again this season to protect his value going into the offseason and prevent against further injury, but I imagine he plays at some point in December in an irrelevant contest for the Birds. Pencil him in for 12-99-1 in a Week 17 win that tanks the team’s draft position.

The relationship between Howie Roseman and Ertz is fractured even if Roseman remains in power. If a new front office regime is in place, I can’t see them keeping an aging tight end coming off a big injury who wants a new contract with a younger option waiting in the wings like Dallas Goedert. Hell, Richard Rodgers has held his own at tight end this year!

The Eagles need to get younger and cheaper and bite the bullet on a rebuild. Ertz doesn’t factor into that.

@lolarsystem: Who do we go after for offensive coordinator?

A good question from friend of the program Lolarsystem. It’s hard to come up with a “name” coach for this. Any true up-and-coming offensive mind on the track to becoming a head coach is going to want the ability to call their own plays. With Doug Pederson in place, it’s difficult to lure talented young offensive dudes when they could have greater input elsewhere.

The “offensive coordinator by committee” approach has been an abject failure. Press Taylor is likely gone this offseason. The franchise brought in some new blood with Rich Scangarello, but his influence has been negligible.

For the sake of the question, here’s a random name I’ll throw out there: Titans quarterbacks coach Pat O’Hara.

After coaching for years in the Arena Football League, O’Hara was an offensive assistant with the Texans from 2015 to 2017 and has served in his current role since 2018.

O’Hara is a little older at 52 and doesn’t fit into that Sean McVay mold as the suave millennial offensive guru. Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith will likely move on to a head coaching position of his own next season, so maybe O’Hara will just slide up the ladder in Tennessee and call their plays, but, hey, Jeff Lurie has a fat checkbook.

@D_Tomei: With Bill O’Brien available, do you think he would be a good fit as a quarterback coach/offensive coordinator to challenge both Carson and the coaching staff alike?

I truly hate every hardo from the Bill Belichick coaching tree, but I wonder if he’d be able to act as some sort of an authority figure to get through to Carson Wentz. I can’t believe I’m even entertaining this. What desperate times we are in. Sure, why the hell not, we have nothing else working.

@JxnGreenberg: What will it take for them to fire Doug?

I talked about this in last week’s mailbag. I think Doug Pederson is in his last season with the Eagles.

@_MikeBishop: How ya doing, Shamus?

Wow, finally someone nice enough to ask this. Thanks, Mike. I’m doing relatively well. The Sixers have me amped (I discussed the dichotomy between the current Sixers and Eagles situations on this week’s From the Bleachers podcast for BGN Radio). I can’t wait to watch Tyrese Maxey play. I just bought a new Kentucky Wildcats jacket because of him.

I’m excited to eat some sweet potato pecan casserole on Thursday, but anxious about putting on holiday weight during the pandemic and quarantine. You have to live a little though, right?

@weisband: is there any reason to watch another minute of this season?

Objectively speaking, not really? I have no qualms with Eagles fans checking out. As someone who endured all those crappy Sixers Process-era teams and watched the vast majority of those games, I totally understand people who don’t want to spend three hours in misery.

We all have lives and families and bills and responsibilities and non-sports hobbies. Who wouldn’t want to binge their latest favorite show than watch the Eagles? Who wouldn’t want to play PS5 or Switch and escape the hells cape of our current society?

When has fandom ever been objective though?

I’ll continue watching because I guess it’s technically my job, relying on writing and discussing the team to earn a living, but it’s more to it than that. It’s my life. By March, I’ll be screaming about how I’d love to watch an Eagles game. Sure, in that hypothetical, I’d prefer a team much better than this one, but you get the point.

What made part of the Super Bowl win so great was how it exorcised all the demons that came before that: all the agonizing playoff losses, the down seasons, the Chip Kelly years, etc. In a sick, twisted way, enduring this season will only make the next great Eagles team all that sweeter.

I’m a masochist certainly, so, again, check out if you will. It doesn’t make you any less of a fan, but I’m in too deep to get out of this now.

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