Amidst stories about kelly green jerseys and debate about whether or not to give players second chances, we look back on a day where those roads intersected.
When we all woke up on September 12th, 2010, we figured it would be a day no Philadelphia Eagles fan would ever forget. We were, indeed, right, but It wasn’t for the reasons we originally thought. The man who had been the team’s franchise quarterback, Donovan McNabb, was now wearing an extremely ugly Washington Redskins jersey. Everyone was set for the dawn of the Kevin Kolb era. Instead, it would be Michael Vick who would shine in the spotlight in the first game of the 2010 season and bring the Eagles back from the jaws of defeat.
Well, he didn’t bring them all the way back, but it was still exciting to watch if you saw it. Seeing him do it in a kelly green jersey only added to the moment.
Philadelphia’s carousel at quarterback:
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Quite a buzz had been building around Kolb for quite some time. After all, McNabb was aging, and the Eagles decided they felt good enough about his successor to take him with the fourth pick of the second round in the 2010 NFL Draft. Kolb would eventually surpass A.J. Feeley for the backup quarterback position, and excitement went through the roof when, in his first start against the New Orleans Saints, Kolb threw for 391 yards. He even made ESPN’s SportsCenter with a 71-yard touchdown pass to former Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson.
A lot was going on at the quarterback position in Philly during those days. Most of it’s a blur, but if you’re keeping track, the Eagles took a chance on veteran Michael Vick when everyone else had given up on him. He was signed on August 13th, 2009. The Eagles got creative and would try a two-quarterback system for about a half. It wouldn’t work, and an exhausting season would follow that ended with McNabb playing an imaginary guitar prior to an embarrassing playoff loss to the hated Dallas Cowboys.
That, ladies and gentlemen, was, sadly, how the McNabb era would end in Philly.
Green Bay Packers versus Philadelphia Eagles, opening day:
Opening day of the 2010 season was supposed to be both a glimpse of the future (Kolb) and a celebration of the past (the team was honoring their 1960 championship team). The nostalgia the Eagles created by taking the field wearing the beloved kelly green jerseys was, quickly, being erased by a poor in-game performance. Then, Packers linebacker Clay Matthews brought Kolb down, causing a concussion, and the course of Eagles history would change yet again. Vick would take the field and ignite his teammates. His new city fell in love with him instantly, but in the end, it wouldn’t be enough.
The Eagles fell to the Packers by a score of 27-20, but that game remains one of the most significant games in Eagles history.
Vick’s effect is still felt today.
It’s funny how things work out. It’s 2017, and we’re again talking about kelly green jerseys. We’re, again, discussing whether or not to take a chance on a man who’s made a mistake (Joe Mixon of the Oklahoma Sooners), and that man, much like Vick, and has yet to be forgiven by much of the American public. We’re again discussing Eagles football and a new era at quarterback (Carson Wentz).
Who knows? Maybe the new era can be just as exciting as the last one. Maybe it won’t be. Whatever happens, if we haven’t learned anything else, we’ve definitely learned two things about this team. Expect the unexpected, and don’t take anything for granted.