45 years ago, Yogi Berra first uttered his famous phrase, “It ain’t over ’til it’s over”. He said it to a reporter who was asking him about the slim chances of the team he managed, the Mets, winning the pennant.
At the beginning of the 1973 season, great expectations were placed on the Mets. Led by Tom Seaver, Willie Mays and Tug McGraw, they had one of the best rosters in baseball. The injury bug hit them pretty hard, and many of their everyday players were spending major time on the DL. With one month to go in the season, the Mets were in second to last place in their division. Fortunately the division was abysmal; the NL East Division leading Pirates were only one game over .500. Everyone was still alive.
With just two weeks left to go in the regular season, they had a huge series against those same division leading Pirates. It was at this time that Yogi delivered one of his most famous Yogi-isms,
“It ain’t over ’til it’s over.”
Look I hate the Mets, just as much as everybody else, but the similarities between their 1973 season and the Eagles 2018 season are too similar to ignore.
-Many major players with injuries
-Near the bottom of their division with one month to go
-Division stinks (and luckily for the Eagles the whole NFC stinks)
-HUGE game or series with just two weeks left to go
Also like the Mets, everyone (including me) thought the Eagles were finished. Now don’t get me wrong, they very well could be done, but for now football is exciting in Philadelphia.
What To Watch For
- Nick Foles: What can’t this man do? Time after time, in the most pressure filled situations, Nick comes through in the clutch. He’s humble, does what is asked of him, and just wins. Look for him to look goofy but still get the job done.
- Carson Wentz: The big storyline besides the actual game is, “What happens if Nick wins again, and keeps on winning?” The oft-injured quarterback will once again be watching from the sidelines. Look to see if he is really involved like he was after his injury last year and the beginning of this year, or if he is often by himself looking disinterested like he was against the Rams.
- Eagles Defense: They’re alive!!!!!!! Finally! Watch to see them actually playing excited, getting pressure on DeShaun Watson, forcing turnovers and getting tackles for a loss! I’m pumped!
Keys To Victory
- Offensive Line Play: The O-line has to play well against JJ Watt and Co. or it will be a very, very long afternoon for the Eagles. The O-line needs to do whatever it takes to keep the Texans away from Nick. Nick is a sniper when he has time, and not very good when under defensive line pressure.
- Balanced Offensive Attack: If the Eagles use a balanced attack and effective RPO’s and quick slants, it will help keep the Texan’s defense on its heels.
- Contain DeShaun Watson: The Eagles have not faired well against mobile QBs this year. They need to make Watson beat us with his arm. Make no mistake, he is capable of doing just that, but it is much more difficult for him.
So you’re probably curious how that 1973 Mets season ended. The Mets rattled off four out of five wins against the Pittsburgh Pirates to take a half game lead in the division. They won five out of seven after that to clinch their division with the worst winning percentage for a division winner in MLB History. They even made it to Game 7 of the World Series where they eventually lost to the A’s.
Tug McGraw came up with another iconic saying during that Mets run of 73, and I think it fits here too.
“Ya Gotta Believe!”
I think the Eagles can really do something special this year, they just need to focus on each week individually. And this week, they will take care of business.
Eagles 30 – Texans 17