We’re just days away from the final of this year’s NFL International Series matchups. The Philadelphia Eagles will clash with the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley and if you’re a neutral fan traveling to the venue, there are some things you need to know about this team. Perhaps it’s your first NFL game or you’ve been pushed into attending by a partner who sings the fight song at 3AM. Either way, this guide is for you.
Firstly, the Eagles are defending champions. They won the Super Bowl (Think the UEFA Champions League Final but on steroids) in incredible fashion, completing one of the biggest underdog stories in league history. If that’s not a reason to get excited, then there’s a lovely quarterback by the name of Blake Bortles who would love your support.
The Eagles have their very own Royal Prince in Carson Wentz and this is absolutely vital to your viewing of the game. Some refer to him as the ‘Ginger Jesus’, others, Prince Harry, but we like to go with Carson. The quarterback (the man who throws the ball) is the most important player on the team and Wentz has a tendency to do some slightly magical things. Take this for example:
As you can see, he’s kind of very good at doing the football. Philadelphia’s most exciting player is undoubtedly
Prince Harry Carson Wentz.
Then, there’s how the game works. As Brits, we’re used to screaming ‘IT’S COMING HOME, IT’S COMING HOME, IT’S COMING! FOOTBALL’S COMING HOME”. That won’t fly on Sunday unfortunately. Instead, there’s a simple rule. Whenever Prince Harry is on the field, you need to be as quiet as you can. The magician needs to concentrate to execute his tricks effectively. Whenever they make a big play (or do a thing that makes you go wow), let them know about it though!
However, when Mr Wentz is off the field and the big angry defense runs on, make as much noise as possible. Your role here is one of an underdog. The Jaguars are almost London’s default home team and that just doesn’t sit well with the Brits who bleed green and the Philadelphia fans making the trip. So get up, get loud and do all you can to throw those pesky cats off and help the defense get royalty back on the field.
Another thing you need to know is that this year hasn’t exactly gone swimmingly well for the Eagles. So if they do something good, a cheer could go a long way. The Eagles and Jaguars are in very similar situations and this game could be absolutely pivotal in deciding who goes through to the knockout stage of the Champions League.
The Eagles have a mascot called swoop, which predictably is a bird. Swoop is your friend. Cheer for Swoop.
FINGER WAGGING. There is a player by the name of Jalen Mills. He has green hair and wears #31. His role is to knock away passes and stop the other team from running everywhere with the ball. Sometimes he struggles doing this, but when he does something of mild relevance, he wags his finger, as if to say ‘NOT TODAY SUNSHINE’. Do the same. Help Jalen feel at home.
There are two players you also need to make big notes on. Chris Long and Fletcher Cox. They line up next to each other sometimes to form a Long Cox. I didn’t make this dirty, you did. Their goal is to pound the opposing….I’m gonna stop here. But they’re big, angry…..ugh. THEY ARE MEAN, EXPLOSIVE AND WANT TO….I can’t. They play on Defense and make life difficult for the opposing players, okay?
Finally, the fight song. This is your ultimate weapon. When the Eagles throw a touchdown (believe me, you’ll know when they do), bursting out into a chorus of the Eagles fight song is an absolute necessity. If you need to brush up on your words, we suggest you do so now. The last bit is really easy however. Just spell the word ‘Eagles’, like a spelling be and repeat it at the end. How easy is that? And you’ll have a great time doing it!
Photo credit: AP Photo/Matt Rourke