The Eagles didn’t have anything to play for, but getting shut out is never a great look.

Especially when the quarterback who is supposed to carry the torch now that Carson Wentz is gone finished with a 9.3 passer rating.

Nick Foles threw 11 passes before leaving the game, but completed just four of them for 39 yards and threw an interception. Philadelphia’s defense is going to have to lead the way, but the Eagles’ offense has to at least score a few points and that looks like a real problem.

You want to know why Tom Brady goes to bed at 8:30 and doesn’t eat sugar and has avocado ice cream and treats his body so reverentially? For days like this. Buttoning his blue checked shirt after the game at his locker, he smiled just thinking about it. “Such a great place to play … football at its best,” Brady told me. “The crowd supports their team so much, which is fantastic, but the other side is, they give us so much too. We feed off it.”

Pittsburgh 11-2, New England 10-3. Winner likely to get home-field in the AFC. But with 10-4 Jacksonville lurking, the loser could end up without a week off to start the playoffs. And there was more. The Steelers had a four-game losing streak against New England, and were just 3-10 against the Pats in the Belichick era. “We’ve got to prove they don’t have our number,” said Steelers fan Phil Gennaro, an insurance adjustor on his third IC Light at Tequila Cowboy, a bar in the shadow of Heinz Field, Saturday night. “This game’s bigger for us than for them.”

The biggest question for the Steelers’ immediate financial future is how much longer Ben Roethlisberger hopes to play. He’s due to count $23.2 million against the salary cap in 2018 and 2019, although he’s already dropped a few hints that retirement could be on the horizon.

Ninety-minute team lift, on an outdoor roof deck. “Everybody seems like they were in a good mood,” Graham says. “They understand what [the Seattle loss] was, and we move forward.” At the same time, the players are turning their clocks backward. The Eagles stayed on Eastern time for the Seattle game but switch to Pacific time for the week in California. It’s an adjustment: Graham sheepishly admits he hit the hay at 8:30 p.m. PT on Monday night.

thes centered on game corrections—offense at Angel Stadium, defense at the hotel—the team’s 14 rookies bus to Orange County’s Ronald McDonald House. Fred Hill, the former Eagles tight end, helped found the original Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia in 1974 after his 3-year-old daughter was diagnosed with leukemia. The rookies spend about an hour with Hill and the people the house serves, families of seriously ill children, playing cornhole and decorating picture frames. “As soon as we got off the bus, they were so cheerful and almost, like, starstruck,” says receiver Mack Hollins. nationals_013

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *