Big things are happening on South Broad Street. But none bigger than the departure of the Birds’ fearless leader. How, HOW, could the Dawkins era in Philadelphia be no more? Thirteen years is a long time, but anyone who has watched an Eagles’ game knows Dawkins’ was more than a franchise player.
He may very well be the only successful and not always successful player in Philadelphia history never to fall out of the fans’ good graces.
I thought about rationalizing this decision as I do with most things I can’t initially wrap my head around, but decided it wasn’t worth the effort. Philadelphia is nothing without its fans, and they have spoken. Yes, people will still turn out in droves on gameday, but loyalty is an Eagles fan’s only pride. We may talk trash when they struggle, but, at the end of the day, we defend the Birds to all comers. We may say the team is hopeless, but a faint light always rests in the dark recesses of our pained hearts.
Brian Dawkins was the epitome of an Eagles fan — the physical incarnation on the field of the hecklers in the stands. His hard-nosed, passionate approach to the game won him untiring support and admiration from the downtrodden fanbase, who — let’s fact it — have endured nothing but disappointment year in and year out the entire time he’s been in Philadelphia (and even longer).
You will be missed Dawkins. Not in the way Terrell Owens is missed, or even in the way Ron Jaworski is. It’ll be closer to the way Vince Papale is seen as an Eagle and Aaron Rowan is seen as a Phillie. The way they played the game with heart and won the city over with day-in and day-out commitment to the sport. But Dawkins did even more, as he was a better athlete and performed at his peak for the only team he’s represented to the fullest.
I hope when the Broncos come to The Linc Reid’s and Lurie’s eardrums split with the screams of admiration as B-Dawk takes the field.