Balls, Sticks, & Stuff
The Eagles Are Hotter Than Angelina Jolie
The Eagles are hotter than Angelina Jolie. There, I said it. However, I haven't reached this conclusion without some thought first. A few days ago I walked to the end of my driveway and checked the mailbox. In it, I found bills, flyers, bills, newsletters, bills, offers to refinance my mortgage, and my mortgage bill. But I also found the November 2004 issue of Esquire magazine:

and the October 25, 2004 issue of ESPN the Magazine:

Naturally, I tossed the assorted junk mail aside and I looked back and forth at the cover of each magazine deciding which one to open first. I opened ESPN the Magazine and began to look for the cover story. That's right, I passed up Angelina Jolie for Donovan and T.O. (and because I began paging from the back of the magazine - doesn't everyone? - I stumbled across Dan Patrick's "Outakes" column featuring none other than Eagles safety Brian Dawkins). The fact that I chose Donovan and T.O. over Angelina Jolie can lead us to one of three conclusions:
  1. I am 31 going on 91.
  2. Somewhere deep down, Jolie scares
    me (admit it, she scares you too).
  3. The Eagles are hotter than
    Angelina Jolie.

I decided that while #1 and #2 are very likely, #3 is undeniable. The Eagles, at 5-0 are one of only three teams that remain undefeated in the NFL. Donovan McNabb is third in the NFL in passer rating (103.5) and Terrell Owens is second in the NFL in touchdown catches (6). As a team, the Eagles are averaging 27.3 points/game (third in the NFL), plus 5 in turnover differential, and defensive coordinator Jim Johnson has used 13 different players to record at least a half-sack. I could go on and on. What is even more fun to think about is that the Eagles next two games are against a mediocre Browns team and a Baltimore Ravens team that will be without Jamal "I Sell More Drugs Than Rite-Aid" Lewis.

Entering the season, my two greatest concerns about the Eagles were the depleted cornerback position and the ability of Terrell Owens to fit into the Eagles culture. So far, neither of those have been a concern. For the last several seasons, Johnson has had the luxury of blitzing quite often, knowing he had Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent locking down receivers man-to-man. So far, the formula hasn't changed, Johnson has been able to continue to blitz early and often due to the good play of Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown. As for Owens, all you have to do is read the ESPN the Magazine coverstory and know that has not been a problem:

Owens: Donovan has made me friendlier. Him being loose, free spirited. If you are around a person you respect, it rubs off. When I met Don in Hawaii a few years ago at the Pro Bowl, we took to each other. I can't put it into words to explain it. We just clicked.

McNabb (on Owens history of outspoken disruptive behavior): T.O. doesn't even talk in our huddle. He doesn't say much because he is so tired. We're running him around pretty good.
The Eagles are hotter than Angelina Jolie. Maybe if the folks at Esquire had used the Eagles Cheerleaders as their cover story, I might chosen their magazine first.

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