Good news: Michael Vick looked fantastic for the Eagles under center. Bad news: Philip Rivers wasn't coming off of an ACL injury, nor did the opposing quarterback miss all of the preseason.
The Birds' defense didn't get the job done against Rivers quite the same way they did versus Robert Griffin III in Washington last Monday, nor did he look much like a quarterback in decline as the stories out of San Diego might have you believe. The 10-year veteran connected on 36 of 47 passes for 419 yards and three touchdowns, continuously keeping the chains moving (SD converted 10 of 15 third downs), and helping the Bolts get the last laugh on their final drive by moving Nick Novak into range for the game-winning 46-yard kick with four seconds remaining.
The Chargers completed a 33-30 upset of Philadelphia in the home opener at the Linc on Sunday, but while there are many culprits in the loss, you can't find much wrong with Vick's performance. The Eagles' QB was almost every bit as good as Rivers, hitting on 24 of 37 attempts for 428 yards and a couple of scores, plus added another on the ground.
Unfortunately, there were just a few many numbers working against the good guys. San Diego dominated time of possession thanks to their third-down prowess (40:17 to 19:43), while Philly's nine penalties cost them more than just 82 yards -- it took at least one DeSean Jackson touchdown off the board, not to mention helped the Chargers convert quite a few of those third downs.
There was still plenty to like about what the Eagles did on offense, but defensively they got steamrolled. San Diego's porous offensive line was perfectly fine for most of the afternoon, allowing Rivers to get comfortable in the pocket. Defensive coordinator Bill Davis' unit was also not able to cover the Bolts' barely adequate receiving corps, particularly alternating safeties Nate Allen and Earl Wolff.
It wasn't an altogether embarrassing performance necessarily, but it is one that perhaps Chip Kelly's crew allowed to slip through their fingertips. The Chargers controlled the ball early which allowed them to build a nice lead, but once the offense got clicking the Eagles clawed right back into the contest. As well as he played, Vick had several missed opportunities with Jackson as well.
In other words, the loss will rest heavily on the defensive end. More to come from The700Level over the next 24 hours or so, but it looks like Chip's undefeated season is over, and an appearance in BCS Championship Game is now in jeopardy.