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Love the Eagles

Justin Tardiff | Wednesday, January 14, 2004

If you’re not an Eagles fan already, you should be. Period. There is no logical argument against this.

I don’t care if you grew up in Chicago, Dallas, Miami, Boston or – heaven forbid – Pittsburgh. The Linc welcomes all fans.

You’re old enough to pick your loyalty.

Grew up in Texas? Jump off the Cowboys bandwagon already and support the green of the City of Brotherly Love.

Chicago native? It’s time to get over the 2001 divisional playoff loss and root for the modern powerhouse in the NFC. We’re not in the 80’s anymore. Bonus: Donovan McNabb is from Chicago, but his loyalty belongs in Philadelphia – shouldn’t yours?

I understand that you might need to explain to your friends from home why you’re switching allegiance.

Don’t worry – it might be awkward now, but they’ll appreciate your wisdom someday. So out of sympathy with your neophyte status, here are a few logical reasons to proudly support the Eagles on their quest for their first Super Bowl title.

One: Donovan McNabb is simply McNabbulous.

After Rush Limbaugh’s racist comments, he led a 2-3 team to finish 10-4, became November NFL Player of the Month and brought the Birds to the NFC title game for the third straight year.

Against the Packers on Sunday, he rushed for 107 yards on 11 attempts – an NFL playoff record for a quarterback – and passed for 248, including a fourth-and-26 conversion against a Cover-2 defense late in the fourth quarter to set up the game-tying field goal. McNabb stepped up on big-time plays to get the victory.

I love him. A lot. A whole lot.

Two: Andy Reid.

OK, he kind of looks like a walrus. But he has an instinct for coaching and confidence in his Eagles – deservedly.

Three: “Fly, Eagles, fly, on the road to victory…”

The Notre Dame Victory March it’s not, but the wonderfully cheesy fight song of the Eagles captures the perennial optimism of fans who have never seen a Super Bowl win.

And my last reason for loving the Eagles is Philadelphia – most notably, the fans.

They overcome disappointment, like the Phillies losing the NL wild card playoff spot to Florida, to rally behind the football team raising their hopes yet again. Eagles Court, where unruly fans received immediate consequences for their actions, is no longer necessary.

As late Philadelphia pitcher Tug McGraw said so eloquently, “You gotta believe.”

And I do. Fly, Eagles, fly, past Indiana, straight to Houston.