Philadelphia Eagles look to erase pathetic home history versus Seahawks

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t beaten the Seahawks at home in over 30 years, a streak of terrible football that they look to put an end to when the teams throw down on Sunday.

It’s usually an enjoyable endeavor to look back over past meetings between two teams and reflect on great games and outstanding individual plays made by players of years gone by.

But when the teams in question are the Philadelphia Eagles and Seattle Seahawks, one group of birds has had the better of the play over the past generation or so, especially when the teams have played each other in Philadelphia.

And it’s been the road team from three time zones away absolutely beating the pants off of the home team.

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The Eagles’ history against the Seahawks wasn’t always so lopsided. They were victorious in the first-ever meeting between the two teams, on December 12, 1976. And they’d go on to win three of the next four contests against Seattle.

But ever since, the Seahawks have enjoyed a healthy 8-3 advantage, including four straight victories over the Eagles in Philadelphia since their last loss at the Vet on September 10, 1989.

That’s right; the Berlin Wall was still standing the last time that the Seattle Seahawks took a sad plane ride home from Philadelphia.

And while there have only been four meetings between the teams in Philly since that time, which is remarkably low, the Eagles’ showings in said games have been so bad that they are definitely worth talking about.

I mean, there wouldn’t be an article here otherwise.

Past losses won’t have any bearing on Sunday’s result, but they merit being mentioned because of their lasting impact on a fanbase. Eagles fans, maybe more so than even the players on the field, are out for blood against Seattle. It’s been far too long since the Birds (again, our Birds) last enjoyed a home victory against those other birds.

The first such Eagles setback to start this skid came in Week 1 of the 1998 season. The Eagles took the field for opening day and were immediately blown right off of it by Seattle, suffering a horrendous 38-0 loss that paved the way for a 3-13 season and the merciful firing of head coach Ray Rhodes.

You can be sure that Seahawks running back Ricky Watters, playing in his first game with Seattle after spending the previous three years in Philadelphia, enjoyed sticking it to his old team. And I believe that this is also the game that we all were hit with the sobering realization that Bobby Hoying was, in fact, not good. He was sacked nine times on the day for 48 yards, which almost equaled his actual passing total of 60 yards.

The Eagles had to wait over seven years for their next crack at home against the Seahawks. It came on Monday Night Football on a night when the Eagles were retiring the number of the late Reggie White. They hardly honored his memory.

Amazingly, the Eagles equaled their scoring output from that 1998 game and found a way to get beat even worse in a 42-0 disaster in front of the entire country. It’s the most significant margin of defeat that I can find going back several decades, possibly the worst in team history. Someone call Ray Didinger.

And it could have been even worse than that. Seattle took the 42-0 lead on the first play of the second half when they returned a Ryan Moats fumble for a touchdown. Thankfully, they called off the dogs as the teams played scoreless football for the final 29:45 of the game. Filling in for the injured Donovan McNabb, Mike McMahon came up just a bit short in that one.

The teams next met in Philadelphia in 2007. Amazingly, the Eagles actually scored points on that occasion, yet they still lost a painfully tight affair 28-24. The Eagles had a golden opportunity to win it after Brian Westbrook returned a punt to the Seattle 14-yard line with 1:16 to play.

But AJ Feeley, filling in for the injured Donovan McNabb, eventually threw an interception in the endzone that sealed the Eagles’ fate. Also, was McNabb ever healthy?

It would be seven more years until the teams had their next meeting at Lincoln Financial Field during the 2014 season. In a battle of contending teams, the Seahawks won a 24-14 decision over Mark Sanchez and the Eagles.

Things weren’t as close as the score indicated, however, as Seattle had a 440-139 edge in total yardage and held the ball for an incredible 41:56. Chip Kelly’s hurry-up offense was in fine form that day.

Now, here we are five years later, with the Eagles attempting to finally win a home game against the Seahawks after a decades-long wait. At least they finally have a legitimate quarterback going for them in this one, so that’s a start.

This will be a tall order against yet another solid Seattle club, and it doesn’t help matters to look back on the history of futility that the Eagles bring into this matchup. But it’s time for things to change.

Next. Hey, at least Greg Ward can catch the ball. dark

Maybe the ‘Hawks can finally fly back to Seattle with their tails between their legs.