My father played college football at the University of Pennsylvania from 1961 to 1964. At this time, the Philadelphia Eagles played their home games at Franklin Field, the Quakers stadium on campus. My father got to know some of these players, fresh off the 1960 championship team led by Norm Van Brocklin on offense and Tommy McDonald on the defensive side. Human nature suggested another championship was close, possibly just around the corner, yet none came while my dad was a college student living in Philadelphia.
Awake and rouse yourself for my vindication, for my cause, my God and my Lord! – Psalm 35:23
When the team that you are on or cheer for is not victorious, losing takes its toll. If seasons lead to decades and decades to half centuries, negative thoughts turn fans into cynics. This loser mentality causes individuals to expect the worst, turning self fulfilled prophecies into reality. Perhaps this may explain why national sports writers labeled the city of Philadelphia, negadelphia. As this championship drought continued for 57 years, people struggling with self-esteem issues adopted the Cowboys, Patriots, Steelers or 49ers as their team. This front runner mentality further alienated diehard Eagles fans from those who jumped off the Wentz Wagon after Carson’s season ending injury.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose, Romans 8:28.
Yet, it took a Christian head coach, Doug Peterson, a man of faith who painted a vision that his team began to embrace to lead the way. Fellow believers, Carson Wentz and Nick Foles, took turns passing the baton as quarterback, from one to the other, putting the team in front of selfish ambitions. Thus, this group of under dogs did what the experts said was impossible, to beat the greatest coach and quarterback combination of all time. When the clock finally struck zero after Tom Brady’s Hail Mary pass feel incomplete in Super Bowl 52, what Philadelphia fans dreamed of, hoped for and prayed about came true. By the grace of God, the Philadelphia Eagles are finally a champion.
by Jay Mankus