After a convincing 35-13 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers, Eagles’ Head Coach, Nick Sirianni, called Philadelphia “the best sports town in America.”
The second-year head coach summarized the recent hysteria in the City of Brotherly Love appropriately. The Philadelphia Eagles are the only undefeated team in the NFL. They’ve shown no signs of complacency and no weaknesses that would be vulnerable against the league’s other top contenders.
The Phillies are in the thick of a World Series showdown against the Houston Astros after an improbable ride to the National League pennant. The Philadelphia Union have reached the MLS Cup for the first time ever.
Even the Flyers have joined the party with an energetic 5-2-1 start. While the 76ers certainly haven’t stormed out of the gates, their ceiling as a title contender with two proven superstars is still the envy of most NBA teams.
A New Level in Philadelphia
The Eagles disposed of the Steelers with no serious hiccups on Sunday afternoon. Jalen Hurts keeps taking leaps forward in his third NFL season, proving his critics wrong. It is becoming increasingly more likely that Howie Roseman stumbled onto his long-term answer at quarterback with a second-round pick spent for a projected backup.
A.J. Brown caught three touchdown passes. The use of his size and athleticism reminded everyone exactly why Roseman flipped a first-round and third-round pick for him in April.
Sunday afternoon at the sports complex felt a little different than in past seasons. Visiting fans from Pittsburgh didn’t walk around with their usual forced insistence on hating Philadelphia. They recognized and admitted their worst season since before selecting Ben Roethlisberger in the first round of the 2004 NFL Draft. The Eagles were unquestionably superior to one of the most storied franchises in all of professional sports.
Too Good to be True?
The Eagles are no longer the punchline of major fan bases on the east coast who like to gloat about Super Bowl rings. A legitimate fifth franchise has emerged in town, and a team in an MLB wild card position that didn’t exist a year ago is on a miraculous ride to the World Series.
Three of the four Philadelphia sports teams reached the championship round of their respective sports in under a year’s span from May 1980 until January 1981. Even during an incredible sequence, only the Phillies ended up closing the deal in the 1980 World Series.
Philadelphians have never gotten a chance to live the life of that annoying brat who shows up to parades in Boston, and they probably never will.
It’s been the best month in Philadelphia sports for an entire generation of fans, and nobody is used to it.
Is the sun going to burn out before it’s finally time to celebrate?
AP Photo/Susan Walsh