Says Dave Spadaro:

Injuries are part of the game … and they’ve had a crippling impact on the Eagles this season.

But there are plenty of other reasons why the Eagles are 4-5, and we’ve discussed them throughout the season because they’ve been apparent all year and not corrected.

The slow starts have stalled the offense and added pressure to the defense. The lack of takeaways on defense has been directly the opposite from the Super Bowl season. Poor play in the red zone, a myriad of self-inflicted wounds, and, honestly, mistakes on the coaching end have kept the Eagles grounded.

Where is the urgency?

While head coach Doug Pederson speaks highly of his team’s “resiliency,” he also says the team has shown urgency “in spurts, a little bit” and that’s just not going to win football games down the stretch.

The Eagles must show urgency for 60 minutes of every game because every week is a “must-win” situation. There are just too many things not in sync with this team right now to point to one or two areas. Does the defense play too passively? Yes, at times, but if you were coordinator Jim Schwartz and you looked out and saw Rasul Douglas and Chandon Sullivan – and no disrespect to those two, but they are backups forced into starting roles – would you take risks in coverage? Has the offense taken a step back from last year? No question about it, but there is no easy answer to fix the attack other than to keep working and improving the running game, involving new wide receiver Golden Tate more, and hoping that something clicks, and in a hurry.

The positive spin is that seven games are remaining and the NFC East is still there – the Eagles trail Washington by two games, with two games remaining against the Redskins – and the Eagles are going to fight. They are going to be “resilient,” and that’s a good thing.

But let’s also be real here: The Eagles blew a terrific opportunity on Sunday night to establish themselves in the NFC East to open the second half of the season. The loss was telling in so many ways. How can this team allow the Cowboys to take command at Lincoln Financial Field? Where was the fire? Where was the passion? The urgency?

These are questions that Pederson and his coaching staff and the players will have to wrestle with as they prepare for New Orleans. This football team is in a tough spot, and that’s just the way it is right now. The only way to improve the narrative is to go out and shock the world and beat the Saints:

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