Philadelphia Eagles a Reflection of a Notable NBA Team

Brian Wright@@BrianWright86Correspondent IIAugust 12, 2011

1985:  Moses Malone #2 (left) and Julius Erving #6 of the Philadelphia 76ers sit on the bench during the 1985-1986 NBA season.  (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

No one could argue that the Eagles were Super Bowl contenders prior to the start of the truncated offseason.

But since the lockout was lifted and all teams in the NFL were able to trade players and add free agents, Philly took full advantage.

By picking up the likes of cornerbacks Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie, running back Ronnie Brown, as well as defensive linemen Cullen Jenkins and Jason Babin, the Eagles have been labeled a "dream team."

They've also painted a target on themselves that all opponents will gladly take aim at.

For the cynical observers, the Eagles have been linked to this past year's Miami Heat, one that formed a "Big Three" in order to dominate the NBA for years to come and also became a team loathed nationwide.

While the contemporary comparisons to the Heat of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are certainly accurate, the 2011 version of the Eagles also reflect an old-school NBA club that just happens to share the same city.

Prior to their 1982-83 NBA season, the Philadelphia 76ers were a team that was regularly a bridesmaid, having made the championship round in 1977, 1980 and 1982 but coming up short each time.

PHILADELPHIA, PA - AUGUST 11:  Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles in action during the first quarter against the Baltimore Ravens during their pre season game on August 11, 2011 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Sixers were led by one of, if not the, most dynamic and exciting players in the sport in Julius Erving. But they needed one more piece to the puzzle. Philly got it by acquiring center Moses Malone via free agency. 

With Malone in place, the Sixers formed a formidable squad that could score and defend. The star-laden roster included Bobby Jones, Andrew Toney and Maurice Cheeks—who complemented Dr. J and Moses.

Now let's examine how the Eagles compare.

But first, let's get one major difference out of the way. Erving, who was searching for his first championship ring, was one of the most well liked players around. That certainly cannot be said about quarterback Michael Vick, who is still trying to repair his image.

That said, there's no denying that Vick is still one of the most exciting players in football. He and wide receiver DeSean Jackson created a thrilling offense that lit up the scoreboard in 2010.

The reason they failed to advance any further than the Wild Card round last season was due to a porous defense. Attempts to plug those holes were made not in getting one big name, but by getting several key names that together could get them over the hump. The Eagles brought out the welcome mat for Asomugha–the most highly-touted free agent available–as well as Rodgers-Cromartie, Babin and Jenkins.

Philadelphia's football team has been one of the most consistent franchises over the past 11 years, having made the playoffs nine times in that span. However, there's no Lombardi Trophy to show for it. In fact, the Eagles have the painful memory of a three-point Super Bowl defeat as well as another four losses in the conference championship.

It's made even more excruciating when you consider that 1960 was the last time the City of Brotherly Love celebrated an NFL title.

Now the city believes that by getting the biggest free agent on the market, as well as other integral pieces, they can duplicate Julius and Moses by reaching the promised land.

This year's version of the Eagles are mirroring the Sixers of '83 in terms of offseason acquisitions and past history. Their fans now hope that their final result can be the same, as well.