There was a time the Redskins were the bullies of the NFC East. Winning Super Bowls. Beating up the Eagles every time they dared venture down to RFK Stadium. Busting them up with their Hall of Fame offensive line. From the late 1960s through the early 1990s, the Eagles won just 17 of 60 meetings with the Redskins.
The Cowboys? Same thing. The Eagles once went 7-31 in a 38-game stretch against Dallas. From 1965 through 1986, they won one game in North Texas. They had Emmitt Smith, we had Keith Byars. They had Michael Irvin, we had Kenny Jackson. It wasn’t fair. The Cowboys owned the Eagles, and their huge and obnoxious Philly fan base cackled about it for years.
Even the Giants won a couple Super Bowls over the last decade, and those may have hurt the most because they were right up the Turnpike.
It wasn’t just that the Cowboys, Redskins and Giants won 12 Super Bowls from 1972 through 2012, and the Eagles won none. It was that they rubbed it in our faces along the way.
And there was nothing Eagles fans could do except wait and hope that next year would be different.
And it never was. Until now.
The air of invincibility the Redskins had back when they were winning Super Bowls? That arrogance America’s Freaking Team had during its heyday? The attitude the Giants had when they kept coming out of nowhere to win Super Bowls?
Now it’s our turn.
And whether it’s Jason Kelce delivering the Speech of the Century at the Art Museum or David Akers openly mocking Cowboys fans on national TV inside their own stadium or Howie Roseman trading up past the Cowboys to snag the tight end they coveted, it’s finally the Eagles who’ve got that swagger about them.
The Eagles have the rest of the division scrambling, and the franchise is clearly enjoying every moment of it.
The Cowboys got to host the draft and then had to sit there and watch as it turned into a three-day celebration of everything the Eagles accomplished.
The Redskins try to upgrade the quarterback position and wind up with a 34-year-old journeyman who’s won two playoff games in 13 seasons.
The Giants land a gifted running back while ignoring the fact that their quarterback is 37, coming off his worst NFL season and has a losing record over the last nine seasons (69-74).
Meanwhile, everything the Eagles are doing right now is magic. Every move, every decision.
There’s an electrifying vibe in the NovaCare Center and you can feel it the minute you walk in the building, and part of it is the Super Bowl afterglow but part of it is also the knowledge that the Eagles are positioned for extended success.
Just three years after the front office overhaul that saw Chip Kelly fired and Roseman return to power, you get the feeling the franchise can do no wrong.
Watching Joe Douglas, Roseman and Pederson up at the podium after the draft Saturday smiling and cracking jokes and carrying on I couldn’t help think about all the years of frustration, all the years of front office dysfunction, all the years — all the decades — the rest of the NFC East laughed at the Eagles, and there was nothing they or their fans could do about it.
You couldn’t help wonder if the time would ever come where the tables would turn.
When the Eagles would be the team strutting around with the swagger of a Super Bowl champion. When the Eagles would be the team for once mocking everybody else. When Eagles fans would finally be able to experience what Redskins, Cowboys and Giants fans have experienced several times.
The time is here, and it’s sweeter than anybody could have dreamed.
The Eagles are on top of the world right now. And they’re enjoying every minute of it.