The Starting Five NFL Week 16 Predictions: Brian Dawkins Returns to His Eagles Nest

This still hurts. I should be there but stuff happens. More on that at a later date.

The first time I walked into the Eagles locker room, my eyes had to find one player. It just so happened there was a media throng around the man I wanted to meet and more specifically, shake his hand. In this field, there is no awe when you meet an athlete, celebrity or politician. There are two people over the course of my career that I was in awe of when I shook their hand: One was Chuck D and the other Brian Dawkins. When I told him how much I personally dug his time in Philly, his words were simply “I appreciate you.”

I’m throwing out all writer objectivity when I say that when I looked for the above pic (that I edited), I almost shed a tear. I remember Brian flying all around the ACC tearing cats heads off when he was at Clemson. When the Eagles drafted Brian Dawkins in the second round in 1996 I jumped so high I didn’t know if I would ever land. Brian Dawkins is to the safety position as Ray Lewis is to a linebacker…mentally, spiritually, physically. DeSean Jackson better watch out because we all know damn well Weapon X will be shooting the gift and looking to give out that cold rock stuff. Speed knock. Snot shaker. Head wrecker. Boom, bam, crush…slam! Pow, bop! Jason Avant? You too fam. We talked about this.

One of the last times I spoke with Brian, he speaks of his soul when discussing when to talk to his teammates and when to lead by example: “Most of the talking is done by example. Sometimes you have to play through games you normally couldn’t play through. You have to force yourself to play through some pain and injuries sometimes. Your overall attitude in practicing-even when you’re losing. Every once in a while I find myself having conversations with guys to make sure we are all on the same page about where we need to go from here. Where we need to go from here is what we did tonight. Every phase (of the team) played-we had a couple of bloopers every once and a while-for the most part came to play and had significant contributions to this win.”

Then came the Eagles 44-6 victory over Dallas in what could be seen as his signature Philly moment…in his last game as an Eagle. Two big hits on consecutive plays forced fumbles that were returned for touchdowns. When he came out the tunnel just as the scores from other games were announced…yeah the ones Philly needed, my heart beat out the toe of my shoe. It was one of the most richest feelings I’ve had covering sports considering everything that had to happen that day for the Eagles to squeak into the playoffs. He was emotional when I spoke to him after his last regular season game in Philly. I asked him about pressure:

“What pressure does is build who you really are. It reveals you. They say pressure busts pipes. It can, but it really reveals who you are. In those pressure situations, we came together. We talked amongst one another and we believed in one another. We didn’t allow those trouble situations to get us down and keep us down. We grinded together-people wanted us to point the finger at the offense and we didn’t do that. We helped our brothers up, that brought us closer together and we fought.”

Dan Leone time to getcha tickets fam. Brian appreciates you.

FRI, DEC 25 HI PASSING HI RUSHING HI RECEIVING
San Diego 42, Tennessee 17 Rivers 264 Johnson 142 Gates 74
SUN, DEC 27 TIME (ET) TV PREDICTION THE SKINNY
Buffalo at Atlanta 1:00 PM CBS ATL 24-17 ATL still has fight left
Kansas City at Cincinnati 1:00 PM CBS CINCY 20-7 RIP 15
Oakland at Cleveland 1:00 PM CBS OAK 24-10 Two in a row? Word?
Seattle at Green Bay 1:00 PM FOX GB 35-26 Shoot out all over it
Baltimore at Pittsburgh 1:00 PM CBS PITT 21-14 Pride is the color of steel
Houston at Miami 1:00 PM CBS MIA 28-25 This will be a ball game
Jacksonville at New England 1:00 PM CBS NE 32-28 Pats still home perfect
Tampa Bay at New Orleans 1:00 PM FOX NO 32-24 Closer than you think
Carolina at NY Giants 1:00 PM FOX NYG 24-16 NYG not losing this one
Detroit at San Francisco 4:05 PM FOX SF 23-20 SF searches for .500
St. Louis at Arizona 4:05 PM FOX ARI 30-22 St. Louis valiant but still…
NY Jets at Indianapolis 4:15 PM CBS INDY 34-10 Rollin’ through the homiez
Denver at Philadelphia 4:15 PM CBS PHI 35-20 We miss you BDAWK!!
Dallas at Washington 8:20 PM NBC DAL 33-13 Too much DC disarray
MON, DEC 28 TIME (ET) TV PREDICTION THE SKINNY
Minnesota at Chicago 8:30 PM ESPN CHI 23-18 oh OH Minny ain’t so nice

Classic flick…

9 Responses to “The Starting Five NFL Week 16 Predictions: Brian Dawkins Returns to His Eagles Nest”

  1. Mapoui says:

    am so freaking angry I turned my tee vee off!

    who can explain the logic to behind Jim Caldwells removal of Peyton Manning and gifting the game to the the Jets?

    I swear to god what I see on the Indy playerers faces does not bode well for Caldwells continuation as coach of that franchise.

    that is the most stupid coaching decison on the field I have seen this year. it way surpases Billichecks fourth down decison that gifted Indy the New England Game earlier in the season.

    what..did Caldwell want to give back what he got for free!?

    and not only that…I had a wager riding on the game…Indy plus 6. I lost here 300 dollars for this one decision of Caldwells.

    I see now! Caldwell is a jackass! he wont be coaching too much longer thats for damm sure!

  2. Mapoui says:

    thats trhe Indy season right there! there wont be no super bowl for Indy this year.
    caldwell just lost his team!

  3. Mapoui says:

    I guess I was wrong here!

    Caldwell pulled a bunch of starters which allowed the jets to win the game .

    I guess that was the plan all along although I would swear that Manning and those pulled starters wanted to stay-in, to play and win the game

  4. HarveyDent says:

    That TB-NO game was closer than you thought, huh, Mizz. So close the Bucs actually sneaked outta there with one. That kid Freeman is going to be the truth when he learns the nuances of playing QB in the NFL.

  5. Mapoui says:

    I apologise for my rage Starting Five! I was looking forward to a 19-0 season.

    I believed Indy could do it and the credit would go to Caldwell…and us all.

    Indys offensive line is so strong, allong with Mannings experiencs skills he would be protected all the way through.

    my disappointment was extreme. it clouded my judgement!

  6. HarveyDent says:

    No need to apologize, Mapoui, because nothing’s wrong about letting the board know when the team you follow gives a game away. I called the Jets beating the Colts with Manning anyway because I thought they were primed to fall and with Rexy turning the hounds loose after Manning would tip the scales that way. Manning’s never abused in games and I figure just like any other QB he will get happy feet if he’s worried about getting hit.

    Guess Mercury, Csonka, and the rest of the crew of ’72 can pop the champagne now.

  7. Mapoui says:

    I had my suspicions Harvey! but since Dungy I can never bet against Indy!

    the blue and white got my soul!

  8. Temple3 says:

    Mizzo:

    I used the same picture — without the cool yellow.

  9. mapoui says:

    in hindsiht it appears that caldwell should have one on to try and win the jets ame by leaving his staters in.

    this week against buffalo he could have coastedd and still beat bills preserving the colts unbeaten season, still have a healthy side but out of it for only 3 weeks instead of the almost 4 deh now face and rustiness when hey come back after they bye week.

    as it stands now the colts starters wont play but a quarter this week, after having rested last week, and now go into a straight two week layoff.

    maybe the colts come back too rested and slow.

    sharpness too is a question for the play-offs. caldwell may have the given colts too much of a problem here, one he could have easily avoided.

    a fearful man is as bad as an over-confident one!

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