Eagles' red zone issues give Chargers boost

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Terry Bradshaw

Terry Bradshaw is a two-time Super Bowl MVP who led the Pittsburgh Steelers to four Super Bowl championships during his pro career. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989 and joined "FOX NFL Sunday" in 1994.

The Chargers are back. I was very impressed with their victory over the Eagles, who can't seem to win on the West Coast this year. Now, all the Chargers have do is go to Denver next week and beat the Broncos and they will be back in first place. How great would that be? They should be able to beat the Broncos, who have lost three straight. It doesn't look like quarterback Kyle Orton (bad ankle) will be around for the game, and who knows how much longer he'll be out? Based on his relief effort, it doesn't seem Chris Simms will be able to pick up the slack. Counting this win, the Chargers are 36-9 in November over the past six seasons. OK, they will beat Denver. But this is a marathon season. I really don't think their defense is good enough to go far in the playoffs. Donovan McNabb threw for 450 yards against them, and he misfired a couple of times when he should have had touchdowns. But this whole game turned on the Eagles' inability to convert in the red zone. Three times they were down there and left with three field goals. That was the difference. Why does McNabb pass so much on third-and-short, especially in the red zone? Well, that's just Andy Reid. That's how he is. You don't take a quarter-horse and put him in the Kentucky Derby. You don't get Secretariat and put him in the All-American Futurity. He would have gotten beat. And you don't show a cow at a horse show. There are just some things in life that are just obvious. And that is what Andy Reid does. He's never going to change. He signs a fullback and doesn't run him down there. You kind of wish he would once in a while, but that's just him. Got him beat, too.

Cowboys failure

Dallas lost this game when Roy Williams dropped that pass and then fumbled, too. He may have finished with 100 yards receiving, but he's just a guy. I'm shocked by that. He's just a nice receiver. He's certainly not worth two first-round picks and all that money Jerry Jones is paying him. He's not proving anything. I mean, you got to step up big, Jack, in games like this. And he surely didn't. This was a huge game for the Cowboys. This was their chance to make a statement. If they beat the Packers, they have the Redskins and the Raiders coming into Dallas and they are 9-2 with five games remaining and they have the NFC East all wrapped up. Instead, they brought the Giants back into the picture. The Packers almost shut the Cowboys out. The only winner today was the Giants; they watched both the Cowboys and Eagles lose. Dallas ... well, it's back to the drawing board for them. Too many turnovers and penalties — same old story when they lose.

Figuring out the season

Just a few weeks ago, we were all praising Josh McDaniels. Coach of the Year, we were saying about him. Back on Labor Day, we were picking Chicago. The Bears got Jay Cutler and interception after interception later, we've put a fork in them. This whole league is crazy to me. Last week, we were beating on the Packers because they lost to the Bucs, and today they whipped the Cowboys. Hey, I said there was no way the Steelers would lose today at home. But the Bengals beat them and stuffed the run. Big Ben threw it 40 times, and that wasn't enough. We've already been firing head coaches. It's like Howie Long says, we're in an attention-deficit society. We're all a bunch of black widows. The only thing I'm really sure about it is that the sun is going to come up tomorrow morning. The only two teams I trust right now are the Vikings and the Saints. My Saints are still running the ball very well, got over 200 yards against the Rams, but they are slowly, slowly looking like they are getting ready to lose. I understand that there is an ebb and flow to a season, but you don't climb to the top of the mountain and then decide to jump off a cliff. Sure, they are still unbeaten. But the Saints end the season in Carolina, and that could be a game for home-field advantage in the playoffs and the Panthers may need that for a wild-card spot. I say that because Carolina is coming on strong right now while Atlanta is going down. It's scary to me that nobody is really taking care of business. Finally, NBC Sports asked me this week to pick between Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, and I chose Brady. I go with the rings. Brady has won three Super Bowls to Peyton's one. It's pretty simple for me. I guess you could say I'm a Saints guy and a Brady guy.

What's up, Matty Ice?

Here is the thing with Matt Ryan. He's a young quarterback who had everything go right for him last year as a rookie. I know he's probably still working as hard studying and preparing each week, and now things aren't going as well for him. Fans have to understand that one year you throw it up there and great catches are made, and the next year you see something and it's just not working the same. The simple explanation is that it's just part of this game. The good thing is that he's not going 9-for-30. He's OK. He's just not getting the big plays. And losing Michael Turner today in the first half really hurt him and the Falcons. I think he's going to be fine. What he's going through is just part of being a professional quarterback. Atlanta isn't a great football team. The Falcons are still a team in the making, so I'm not worried about him at all. But like anybody else, you worry about his confidence. I know he's frustrated with his interceptions, but his play is not ridiculous. So I wouldn't worry about it, and I would tell him exactly that. Keep your head up, son.
Tagged: Falcons, Bears, Bengals, Cowboys, Broncos, Packers, Colts, Raiders, Vikings, Patriots, Saints, Giants, Eagles, Redskins, Panthers, Steelers, Chargers, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Donovan McNabb, Roy Williams, Chris Simms, Michael Turner, Kyle Orton, Jay Cutler, Matt Ryan

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