As the saying goes, “you don’t realize what you have until its gone.”
For the City of Brotherly Love, the man they booed back on that Saturday in April of 1999 with the second overall pick, is officially gone.
For the Syracuse University alum, it is sad to see McNabb endure the hate and torment from one of the most spirited fan bases in all of sports. They never welcomed him with open arms to Veterans Stadium.
McNabb deserved better from the Eagles fans and they took him for granted. How funny would it be if No. 5 enters the nation’s capital and turns the Washington Redskins around?
Simply put, McNabb made the Eagles a prominent team in the NFL. Aside from holding five franchise records, McNabb took over a team that only advanced past the divisional round of the playoffs once since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970.
If you forgot what the Chicago native did as the starting quarterback in the early years of his career, let me refresh your memory. McNabb led the Eagles to the NFC Championship in three consecutive seasons from 2001-03 before advancing to Super Bowl XXXIX in 2004.
Let’s take a step back in the history Philadelphia football. Aside from pelting Santa Claus with snowballs, the Eagles' only relevant season came in 1980 when the franchise advanced to the conference title game and played in Super Bowl XV after beating the Cowboys.
Is not important for the starting quarterback of an NFL team to have more winning seasons than losing seasons? In McNabb’s tenure in Philadelphia, the Eagles suffered one losing season when he began the season under center.
With the way the NFL is structured, parity—for the most part—is a common thing and McNabb led his team to five conference championship games in 11 seasons. If you ask me, the numbers are on his side.
One thing I will never understand is how this city never warmed up to a winner as their quarterback. Congratulations Eagles fans, you now have Kevin Kolb, out of Houston, as your next signal caller. Nothing against Kolb, for all I know he can turn out to be an amazing quarterback before his career is said and done, but for the time being he was a back-up to a future hall of famer.
For Kolb, the time is now for him to step up. Kolb expressed interest this year about wanting the starting job and now it’s his turn to fill in the shoes left behind by a quarterback that was never appreciated in Philadelphia. I wish the best for the former Cougar as he takes over the Eagles.
The move to Landover this upcoming season was the best move for both parties involved, since the organization was shopping the 33-year-old around this offseason. McNabb truly was an underrated quarterback in Philadelphia and you can just hope that one day they will appreciate all he did for the City of Brotherly Love.