While Sam Bradford has yet to officially be ruled out of this Sunday's home game against Tampa Bay, it looks more and more like Mark Sanchez will get the call to try and lead the Eagles to what could be considered a "must-win" given last Sunday's unexpected loss to Miami as 5.5-point favorites at home.
Sanchez played a key role in that loss with a late-game interception in the end zone with Philly driving to take the lead. This has been his MO throughout his seven-year NFL career. Looking at his life-time stats first with the New York Jets and in his last two seasons with Philadelphia, Sanchez has thrown 82 touchdowns and 81 interceptions. The one stat I could not find was how many of those interceptions cost his team the game. I do know that he is one-for-one this year.
In retrospect, getting rid of Nick Foles might have been the right move given his woeful play in St. Louis, but head coach Chip Kelly had to know deep in the back of his mind that neither Sam Bradford or Mark Sanchez was the long-term answer to lead his team to a Super Bowl title. I am not sure if either of these quarterbacks is even capable of leading this team to a winning record but right now it is what it is.
I would rather see Tim Tebow run around in the backfield trying to make plays then watch Bradford sleepwalk his way through games or watch Sanchez throw games away with costly interceptions. Kelly was between a rock and a hard place this past offseason in his numerous attempts to land Marcus Mariota as his quarterback of the future, but he will not have the luxury of playing it safe this time around as far as finding someone that can run his offense the way it was really designed to work.
It is still too early to give up on this season, but if the Eagles do manage to somehow win the watered-down NFC East and possibly even win a playoff game or two it will be on the shoulders of their much-improved defense. This side of the ball has been the lone bright spot for the future against the grim reality that the Birds' offense has taken a huge step backwards with its current situation at the quarterback position.