Andrew Luck is doing his normal "you think I'm a rookie quarterback, but watch me play" routine on Thursday Night Football tonight and all I can think of is, "Why is that never us in Philadelphia?"
By that, I mean when the Philadelphia Eagles specifically (and Philadelphia sports teams generally) bottom out, why are we never there to take Andrew Luck, Eli Manning, or Peyton Manning? Why are we always there to take Corey Simon (#6 overall in 2000), Mike Mamula (#7 overall in 1995), or—dare I say it—Donovan McNabb (#2 overall in 1999)?
And it is not like this is a phenomenon limited to the Eagles in Philadelphia.
When the Flyers get the No. 1 pick overall, it is never Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin or Steven Stamkos or Rick Nash or Alexander Ovechkin. It's Eric Lindros (No. 1 overall 1991, via Quebec Nordiques).
When the Sixers get the No. 1 pick overall, it is never LeBron James or Dwight Howard or Derrick Rose or Tim Duncan. It's—God love him—Allen Iverson (No. 1 overall 1996).
When the Phillies get the No. 1 pick overall, it is never Stephen Strasburg or Bryce Harper or David Price or Justin Upton. It's Pat Burrell (1998), or worse, it would be J.D. Drew (1997), except he will not sign here, so he goes back into the pool for the St. Louis Cardinals to take.
The point I am making here is that as much as any fan likes to think that his or her team can improve with shrewd scouting and deft drafting, the ultimate decision-maker in a franchise's fortune is the fickle finger of fate.
The Eagles have not drafted higher than No. 12 overall since 2000, when they took Simon two picks ahead of Plaxico Burress and three ahead of Brian Urlacher. The year before that they took Donovan McNabb No. 2 overall.
It would have been nice if Peyton Manning (No. 1 overall in 1998) had been on the board there.
Isn't it pretty to think so.