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Jake Fischer

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A Philadelphia Fan's Reflection on Andy Reid

Posted: 01/04/2013 12:25 pm

According to reports, Andy Reid has reached an agreement to become the next Kansas City Chiefs head coach. But for many in Philadelphia, their attitudes about Reid and his era in Philly are diverse.

While the first half of Reid's 14 seasons as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles was full of glitz and glamour, the closure to his long-term stint came with much controversy, criticism and regret. In fact, the one phrase that could truly describe the Andy Reid era might just be, "what if?"

As a Philadelphia kid who grew up in the Andy Reid era, I literally cannot remember an Eagles game Reid didn't coach. To my generation, football has been synonymous with Andy Reid. And, it's come with many memories -- both positive and negative.

I remember the countless wings I ate in my basement with my dad and brother watching five Eagles NFC Championship Game appearances from 2001-2008.

But, I remember the Eagles only winning one of those NFC Championships.

I remember screaming and dancing as the Eagles clinched the NFC Title, 27-10, in 2004 over the Atlanta Falcons at Lincoln Financial Field.

But, I remember Reid coaching lopsided play calling and McNabb blowing chunks in the Super Bowl. But, like in Wayne's World, it simply was never meant to be.

I remember cheering when PA Announcer Dan Baker's booming voice announced that the Eagle's challenge was successful and the play had been overturned.

But, I remember Reid countlessly mismanaging the game clock, missing many opportunities and wasting timeouts because of a multitude of miscommunications.

I remember some of the electrifying deep balls that McNabb threw under Reid's West-Coast regime.

But I remember the Eagles criminally underusing running backs like Duce Staley, Brian Westbrook and LeSean McCoy.

I remember the complete insanity that was in the air when the Eagles signed Michael Vick in the summer of 2009.

But, I remember how the Eagles overreacted to Vick's outstanding 2010 comeback season and committed a ridiculous $100 million to a guy who had only started all 16 games in a season once.

However, for a man that has dealt with so much turmoil, scrutiny and pressure in his life, you have to look back at Reid's era in Philly with a warm heart and appreciation. Yes, he never won a Super Bowl. Yes, the Eagles only earned a 12-20 record in his final two seasons in Philadelphia. And, yes, he immediately returned to football following the tragic death of his son.

But, while Andy Reid's final seasons in Philly have left a sour taste in many Philly fans' mouths, we still have to look at the positives. Reid led the Eagles to the playoffs in all but one season throughout the entire decade of the '00s. He also brought this team to only their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history. He won eight NFC East Division titles as well.

I celebrated Reid's firing from the Eagles on Monday -- not because I look down upon him as a coach or person, but because both parties needed to go separate ways. The Eagles need a culture shock and Andy Reid needs a new community and city to turn into his new project just like he did in Philadlephia 14 years ago.

While he's caused me countless migraines, too many heartbreaks and frustrated Monday mornings, I still respect the game of football and the illustrious elegance of the National Football League. And, I still respect Andy Reid as a football coach. Many in Philly should feel the same.

Andy Reid is in no way a Philadelphia sports legend like Adam Schefter called him on 97.5 FM The Fanatic in Philadelphia, but he did have an impact that the City of Brotherly Love will never forget.

 

Follow Jake Fischer on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JakeLFischer

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