Sunday’s loss to the Minnesota Vikings is just the most recent case of the Philadelphia Eagles and Chip Kelly not taking full advantage of their star running back. The defeat marked the seventh time this season that LeSean McCoy carried the ball less than 20 times, five of which have been Eagles’ losses. McCoy’s eight carries and 38 yards on the ground, against Minnesota, were his lowest totals of the season in each category. Although it turned out to be a big day passing, utilizing the services of McCoy could have more aptly allowed the offense to give the defense some much needed rest.
Looking from the opposing perspective, when Shady carries the ball more than 20 times, the Eagles are unbeaten, boasting a 4-0 record. He is having the best year of his career, leading the NFL in rushing and already eclipsing his highest personal total on the ground, with two games still remaining. McCoy has already broken the Eagles’ franchise record for rushing yards in a game, with 217, and with two more chances, he is definitely within reach of breaking the single-season mark, currently held by Eagles’ great Wilbert Montgomery. He is quickly putting himself in the conversation with the greats in Philadelphia history, yet he is not consistently getting the carries related with such accolades.
With the season on the line in the next two weeks, percentages would say that it would greatly benefit Philadelphia to make sure McCoy is the center of the offense and receives plenty of touches on the ground. It may mean the difference between the Eagles winning the NFC East and making the playoffs, or going home empty handed before season’s end.
For the sake of the revival of football in Philadelphia and the rejuvenated fan base of the storied Eagles, give the ball to Shady!