2015 Flashback: Five Worst Moments in Philadelphia Sports

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Nov 26, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) scores a touchdown while being pressured by Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Eric Rowe (32) during the third quarter of a NFL game on Thanksgiving at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

5.) Thanksgiving Day Massacre

Oddly enough, during a year where there was so much losing, it’s hard to nail down too many particularly devastating defeats. One could make an argument that with teams not close to contention, the stakes were rarely high enough to make for heartbreak. The Phillies and Sixers seasons were seemingly over before they started in terms of postseason contention. Meanwhile, the Flyers are still going through the feeling out phase of playing under a new head coach. None of their losses could be categorized as ‘devastating’ at this point of the season. Even the Eagles have struggled to really tug at our heart-strings in terms of heartbreaking losses on the field in 2015.

One could make a case that the nature of their week four loss to the Redskins might make the grade, but they quickly made up the necessary ground in the division that came as a result of that stumble. Really, any of the three losses that came after the Eagles overtime win in Dallas could have probably filled this spot. That being said, there was something about the game being aired on national TV on Thanksgiving just a year after one of the more impressive wins of the Chip Kelly era that distinguished this loss.

Not even a week after seeing Tampa Bay humiliate them on their home field, the Eagles traveled to face a Lions team with a faint chance at returning to the postseason. The Lions had been the last team to win its first game in 2015, but were able to rattle off a few wins heading into the Thanksgiving showdown with the Eagles. Mark Sanchez was still under center for the Birds, and the anti-Chip Kelly drum was beating as loudly as one can ever remember. Anyone that had watched the team leading up to this game would have legitimate fears of something humiliating taking place in Detroit. I’m not sure anyone would have guessed they’d perform as poorly as they did.

The Eagles, save for a few flickers of life in the early going, might as well have not even showed up. Nolan Carroll broke his leg, leaving rookie Eric Rowe to fill in at starting cornerback. Whether it was for schematic reasons or a lack of faith in Byron Maxwell, Rowe was pitted against Calvin Johnson almost exclusively throughout the game. Johnson torched the rookie for three touchdowns and no one seemed interested in providing any help for the 2nd round pick out of Utah. Detroit did what they wanted, when they wanted to. The only saving grace of the game was that the Lions built up a big enough lead to run down the clock. A year after securing one of the biggest wins of the Chip Kelly era on Thanksgiving, the Eagles hit the nadir of their embarrassment in 2015 from a competitive standpoint against the Lions.

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