Brian Dawkins’ name is synonymous with the Philadelphia Eagles. That is until March 1, 2009. That was the day that the seven time Pro Bowl safety signed a five-year, $17 million contract with the Denver Broncos. Dawkins spent 13 years in an Eagles’ uniform, and it all came to a heartbreaking end.
Heartbreaking for Dawkins himself, his teammates on the Eagles, and every Eagles fan anywhere. No one expected him to be anything but an Eagle next season. He was the face of the Eagles franchise, and the emotional leader of that team.
Players from each of the NFL’s 32 teams hold him in the highest regard for his leadership, passion, and determination for and in the game of football. No matter what colors he is wearing, we can all rest assured that he is going to leave it all on the field every game.
Dawkins is a hard player to place a label on. Some would call him a ball-hawk, while some would call him a run stopper. But the reality is that he is both. His 33 career forced fumbles, and 34 career interceptions put him right in the middle of those two categories.
When I think of Brian Dawkins, I immediately think of the Madden 08 intro on the PlayStation 3.
“Can you feel that, that thing that’s beating in your doggone chest right now? Can you feel what’s about to happen on this field?” Because that’s what he’s all about as a player and as a person—heart.
I for one, wish Brian Dawkins the best in Denver. From one fan of a Pennsylvanian team, to the fans of the other—I feel for you. The franchise just lost one of the best players in its history. But life goes on, and the Eagles are going to be rebuilding in the coming years.