Wednesday, September 10, 2008

When It's Dallas Week, Nothing Else Really Matters

With the Phillies in the middle of a playoff chase, I've tried hard to focus on the Fightins. The Eagles' next game isn't until Monday night, in Dallas, so I wanted to hold off on writing about the team I love more than any on the planet taking on the team I despise more than Mitch Williams.

But then, I ventured over to and read this. It's a great read on some of the most memorable Eagles-Cowboys games as told by people who covered the Birds over the years. And it got me thinking about my most memorable games since I've been alive against the Boys. And no, one of them isn't this game (20 seconds in), even though it is awesome.

How badass did Sheldon look wearing No. 39? I wish he'd go back to that.

Anyway, there are two games that come immediately to mind. Two that stand out more than any others. The first is without question the best call I've ever heard from Merill Reese in my life. Yes, you guessed it, the Eagles stopping the Emmitt Smith and the Cowboys not once, but twice on 4th and 1 to win the game.

I will never forget that as long as I live. As an 11 year old, I was sitting my living room with my dad, watching the game on TV on mute and listening to 94.1 to hear Merrill's sweet voice. After the bogus redo, the Birds came up huge as Merrill shouted, "THEY STOPPED 'EM AGAIN!" It was glorious.

The second I remember quite possibly more vividly than any game I've ever watched on television. Now 12, I again was watching the Eagles take on the Cowboys in big D with my Dad, as I did every Eagles game. The Birds were in command most of the game, but they had failed to put Dallas away.

In the final minutes, Troy Aikman was marching the Cowboys down the field for what looked like it was going to be the winning drive. My dad was yelling at the TV, "They kept letting them hang around! They let them hang around and now they're going to lose! This makes me sick!" Meanwhile, I knew he was right, but I did the only thing a 12 year old can do in a time like that—I crossed all of my fingers on both hands (middle finger over pointer, ring over pinky, pointer over pinky, thumb in the middle), sat on them and prayed. And then it happened.

It worked! Holy crap it worked! That's what I thought at the time. Also, my dad and I really wondered out loud what the hell James Willis was doing lateraling that ball to Troy. That seemed really, really dumb. Then again, James Willis was really, really dumb. Anyway, it worked out, and I was freakin pumped.

God damn do I hate Dallas. Especially Tony Romo. And Roy Williams. That asshole ruined my life once before. Now it's the Birds' turn to go back down to big D and romp them.

PS: Honorable mention goes to the Pickle Juice Game, also in Dallas, where Duce Staley, one of my favorite Eagles ever, romped all over the Cowboys for 201 yards rushing.

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