Eagles vs Cards on 97.3; DJax OUT
Records Eagles 3-5; Cardinals 2-6
Line: Eagles by 14 points
Radio: 97.3 ESPN, 1450AM
Mike Gill's pick: The Cardinals will go with back-up QB John Skelton, the second year man from Fordham is 2-3 life-time has a starter. Eagles 34, Cards 24
The Eagles will look to "save their season" again today when they host the Arizona Cardinals today at 1pm (Listen to the game on 97.3 ESPN and 1450-AM). Some injury news, starting guard Evan Mathis and safety Nate Allen will not play today and wide-receiver DeSean Jackson has been ruled out due to missing a team meeting on Saturday.
We'll see if Steve Smith gets his first extended time today in place of Jackson, who has had a pretty down season, registering just 29 catches, 503 yards and just two touchdowns. Other options with Jackson out will be Brent Celek, who has become a much bigger part of the offense, Jason Avant, who is second on the team with 33 receptions and possibly Riley Cooper, who hasn't caught a ball all season.
The question will now be is the the beginning of the end for Jackson, who entered the season wanting a new contract. While at times his play can be explosive, those plays have been few and far between this season. Last season, Jackson averaged 22.5 yards per catch, this season he is only gaining 17.3 per grab. In the return game, where Jackson has excelled, he has just nine returns for 33 yards and last week his costly fumble could have been the turning point of the game.
Many have wondered if Jackson should be paid as a number one wide-out, I have consistently suggested that he is a number one play-maker, but not a top wide-out - this season is isn't even demonstrating that.
The question is how will this game change the future of Jackson in Philadelphia?
I have suggested that top wide-out Jeremy Maclin and Jackson are not very good compliments of one-another. Could the former Pro-Bowler Smith show the Eagles that he is the guy who deserves to line-up opposite Maclin next season and a much reduced rate.
In 2009, Smith grabbed 109 balls and gained over 1200 yards, he could be the perfect complement to allow Maclin to become more of a big-play threat.
Questions have surfaced about Jackson's effort this season. Playing on the final year of a deal that he is not happy with, some have wondered just how focused Jackson is this season. After missing a meeting on Saturday, questions about his focus on a week when his team's season is on the line seem to be fair.
Will the Eagles even miss him in his absence, or will they rally and obtain a much need victory in a game they must have if any thoughts of the playoffs still dance in their head. Find out today at noon with pre-game coverage on 97.3 ESPN, with the kick-off set for 1pm.
Eagles inactives: Mike Kafka, DeSean Jackson, Nate Allen, Curtis Marsh, Evan Mathis, Winston Justice and Phil Hunt.
Jaiquawn Jarrett for Allen at Safety, King Dunlap for Mathis at LG and Jason Avant all will startin place of Jackson.