As always, the Weinberg family Christmas display is dazzling.  At least it was until Saturday night, when a storm rolled through and gusting winds left our giant snowman facedown in the mulch and dirt of our front garden.

Its stovepipe hat wound up in the driveway under the basketball ball hoop that’s been hanging there for 30 years. It hasn’t had a net in a decade. The carrot nose was laying under a front tire. We’re still looking for the eyes made out of coal.

Photo by Dave Weinberg/973 ESPN Sports Columnist
Photo by Dave Weinberg/973 ESPN Sports Columnist

Frosty was still in better shape than the Eagles, however.

The Birds also got flattened on Monday night, suffering a brutal, 20-17 loss at Seattle.  That defeat – their third in a row after winning 10 of their first 11 games – was arguably the worst of coach Nick Siranni’s three-year tenure.

It left Eagles fans feeling sicker than quarterback Jalen Hurts, who was battling flu-like symptoms before the game and even flew to Seattle separately in order to protect his teammates.

Better safe than sorry, except they delivered a sorry effort.

“I don’t think we were committed enough,” Hurts said after the game. “It’s a matter of being on the same page. It takes everyone being all-in in all aspects.”

The Eagles had to deal with various issues even before kickoff.  Sirianni mysteriously decided to take away play-calling duties from defensive coordinator Sean Desai over the weekend and hand them to consultant Matt Patricia.

Philadelphia Eagles loss in Seattle on Monday Night Football
Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images

That was also just about the time the team announced that cornerback Darius Slay - who has no love for Patricia since their days in Detroit - underwent arthroscopic knee surgery and will likely miss at least the rest of the regular season.

Then there was Hurts’ illness.

But as hard as it was to stomach the problems, the Eagles had reason to feel optimistic heading into the game.  Dallas’ 31-10 loss at Buffalo Sunday put the Eagles back in first place in the NFC East.  The Eagles also clinched a playoff berth over the weekend, which makes Siranni the first coach in franchise history to make the postseason in his first three seasons.

In addition, they were playing a Seahawks team that was missing its starting quarterback. Geno Smith sat out with a groin injury, leaving Drew Lock as their QB.

My family also had some unexpected merry and bright moments before the game.

Our annual trek to find a Christmas tree got off to a rocky start on Sunday. Five stops at various local farms and vendors were unproductive. Some lots were empty, a couple were closed and others had trees that looked like the one in “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

 And they cost $96.

Disheartened, we drove past a local garden center Monday afternoon and were happy to see a half dozen Douglas Firs in the lot.

Then we saw the price tags of $169.99 and our faces turned the the color of egg nog. Fortunately, they were 50 percent off, so we grabbed two – one for us and one for Karen’s sister. The salespeople even sprayed them with a special oil to keep the trees fresh.

“My grandparents decorate theirs for Valentine’s Day,” a young man said with a smile.

The Eagles offense could have used some of that oil, for Hurts and company looked staler than a week-old muffin, aside from two touchdown drives at the start of each half.

The defense looked mildly better, but tackling was again a problem. You could have legendary coordinators such as the late Jim Johnson and the late Bud Carson dialing up blitzes and coverages, but it won’t matter if linebackers and safeties don’t make plays.

And the defense collapsed when it counted most. Lock guided the Seahawks on a 92-yard drive down the stretch and capped it with a 29-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba with 28 seconds left in regulation.

It added up to one of the most frustrating, disappointing defeats in years.

The good news is that the Eagles (10-4) still have a solid chance of winning the division and earning the No. 2 seed in the conference.

They close the regular season with a pair of games against Tommy “Cutlets” DeVito and the New York Giants (5-9) and one against the hapless Arizona Cardinals (3-11) while the Cowboys have to play the Dolphins (10-4), Lions (10-4) and always dangerous Commanders (4-10).

If the Eagles and Cowboys end up tied, Philly wins the division on a tiebreaker.  But they have to find a way to regain their confidence and cohesiveness if they expect to have any success in the playoffs.

Otherwise, they’ll wind up like our snowman.

Top 10 Things To Do This Off-Season in Cape May, NJ Area

Anyone who has lived in Cape May County knows that even though half the businesses close during the winter, the locals still love living in this area for many reasons. As someone who has lived in Cape May County for over 20 years, here are some of my favorite activities to do in the offseason:

Gallery Credit: Josh Hennig/Townsquare Media

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