Reid is also under contract through 2013. Buying him out would not be cheap.
So take a deep breath, and be prepared for a Reid Redux in 2012. That said, I’m worried. I’m worried because if you’re not getting better in the NFL, you’re getting worse. I broke down Donovan McNabb’s numbers here back in April 2010 when McNabb was traded. So let’s dissect the Reid era.
1999-2004: On the Way Up
Obviously 1999 was the beginning of the rebuilding. Interestingly, Reid’s first year, 5-win total actually improved upon 1998’s 3 win campaign, the last under Ray Rhodes. Throw out all the other stats: wins matter. And win he did, steadily rising up to 2004’s 13 win total (which, had they had anything to play for the last few weeks of the season, would have undoubtedly be greater). Note the consistency.
4 consecutive division titles, 5 consecutive trips to the playoffs, 7 playoff wins, 4 consecutive NFC Championship Games, and a Super Bowl appearance.
2005-2011: On the Way Down
To quote the Wikipedia entry on the matter, “The 2005 Philadelphia Eagles season was a complete disaster for the team.” Between the Terrell Owens show and the injuries – and the post-Super Bowl hangover – it got ugly. Since 2004’s 13 wins, the Eagles have failed to win more than 11 games – and they’ve done that only once.
In the 7 seasons from 2005-2011, Reid’s earned 2 division titles, 4 playoff appearances, 3 playoff wins, and 1 NFC Championship appearance. Granted 2011 isn’t over yet, but I’m willing to bet that they aren’t getting to the playoffs this year.
End of an Era?
Not only has Reid been on a downward spiral since 2005, but he has also been maddeningly inconsistent. And not only from season to season, but within seasons. Consider 2006; the Eagles were 5-6 before miraculously running off 5 consecutive wins to seize the division.
In 2009 they seemed to catch lightning in a bottle, but still came up short. Mike Vick’s 2010 season clouded the reality of a team in disarray. The team we saw at the conclusion of the 2010 season was in fact the Real Eagles – the Eagles we see before us now. A bad team.
His teams since 2005 have shown Zero signs of the steady, consistent improvement that marked the first half of his tenure here.
The Reid era ended in January 2005. The numbers bear it out.