After the Parade: The Tarnishing of the Gold

What do you suppose was in the heads of Reid and Banner as the greatest parade in Philly history was streaming past their fortified bunkers in the Nova Care Center on Halloween afternoon? Visions of playoffs past? Ugly replays of the ten minute 2-minute drill, complete with McNabb losing his lunch, toward the end of their only Super Bowl appearance? My guess is neither. It’s more likely that for a fleeting moment each thought the celebration was for them. After all, year after year they talk and act as if they’ve already collected enough Lombardi hardware to fill, and bury, Citizens Bank Park. So it’s not a stretch to imagine that Reid and Banner chose to interpret the din outside as tardy Eagles fans finally giving them the overdue recognition they so richly deserve. They are, after all, The Gold Standard!

Ah, but we know what the parade really represented: it was the Fightin’ Phils and every Philly sports fan delivering a harsh reality check to Team Lurie. You see, Philly may not be awash in championship trophies and rings, but at least when you watch replays of the other Philly teams that have won it all, the pictures are in color. The last Eagles championship goes back to the days of black & white TV. Paul Hornung, anyone? Since that pre-Super Bowl era victory in 1960, Philly teams have won 5 championships – admittedly pretty dismal but, even worse, not one of these belongs to the Green & Silver. Well, then, how ‘bout the playoffs? The Eagles must dominate that category, right? Well, not exactly. Since the advent of color TV, the Eagles have been in 5 NFC Championships and sport a 2-3 record, including that lovely stretch of 3 consecutive losses from ’02-’04. Both NFC Champ victories, of course, were followed by Super Bowl losses. Over the same period, the Philles have been in 7 NL Championship games, with a record of 4-3, two of these leading to World Series victories. Hell, even the Flyers have been in 7 Stanley Cup finals, albeit with only 2 championships to show for it.

Now the Eagles brain trust would say that’s not fair; they can’t be judged by what happened before them. True, but the experience of fans is continuous – it doesn’t start, stop, and reset with each change in ownership. And the bottom line is that the Eagles are the only Philly team having 0 championships in the so-called modern era – a record that Lurie, Banner, and Reid are successfully keeping intact.

And so the real meaning of the Phils outstanding performance on the field and outstanding class demonstrated on the victory stand is clear: it is a withering message to Team Gold Standard to put up or shut up. The time is yours, Andy….


Mike said...

I like the article. It's simple and easy to read, you have numbers to back up your idea. But you are comparing Andy Reid's Eagles to the rest of the Philadelphia teams since 1960.

If you grade the teams performance since he took over, in 1999 that would be interesting. Which team has the higher win %, most divisions, more playoff appearances and victories? That would be a nice thing to check out.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the article. The Eagles go out and act like they are the best at what they do. The Phillies just went out and proved it.