The King of Mt. Airy Phil Allen joins Palmer Alexander to (OF COURSE) talk about the high that he continues to be on now that his Philadelphia Eagles are World Champions. In addition, discussing about the rise of the Sixers and possibly how scary this team could become in the future. This segment is sponsored by Mattress by Appointment Maryland Heights.
KMOV sports director Maurice Drummond joins Palmer to talk about the Cardinals and Spring Training, Twitter, career reflections and Ozzie Smith. This segment is sponsored by Rich Girls, Real Women Incorporated and Mattress by Appointment Maryland Heights.
Bauce joins the show IN-STUDIO with Palmer and the A-Train to give his thoughts on the Raiders leaving Oakland. Back in 2015, he was on the front line pushing hard for the Raiders to stay in Oakland. Bauce didn’t hold back and pulled no punches in this interview. This segment is sponsored by Mattress by Appointment Maryland Heights.
NOTE: The following segment contains language that some will find objectionable. Parental discretion is advised.
We’re back with a fresh new episode of N The Zone. We talk about incorporating new things to the show and gave a recap on what has went on since our hiatus. And then, Palmer delivers another history lesson in “The Monologue.” Find out who and what was said because he said a lot (remember we were out for a while) so give it a listen. Sponsored by Mattress by Appointment Maryland Heights.
NOTE: The following contains language that some find objectionable. Parental discretion is advised…we’re back!
Friend of the show Kellen Goodwin of (the title sponsor of the show) Mattress by Appointment – Maryland Heights joins The A-Train to talk about how he got the business started, the deals to offer and why should you trust him for your next mattress. Plus we sprinkle in some sports conversation as well.
In the beginning they were one. They came from the industrial hardscrabble streets of Kensington, from the heavily Italian enclaves of South Philadelphia, some walked up from the North Philadelphia communities of the “Valley,” Brewerytown and Nicetown, others arrived via the trolley’s that connected West Philly to Lehigh Avenue via Girard Avenue and the Strawberry Mansion Bridge. They gathered on Sundays to watch their Philadelphia Eagles at the old Baker Bowl in 1933, Municipal Stadium in 1935 and on to Connie Mack ’40, Franklin Field ’58, Veterans Stadium ’72 and finally their current sparkling state of the art home, Lincoln Financial Field in 2003. They were one, and they expected their team and the players who donned the Kelly Green and White to reflect the personality of the city. Tough and gritty, unyielding, never too tired or busy for a good fight win or lose. That the Eagles did. While not always aesthetically successful, (aside from the 48-49 consecutive NFL Titles and the 1960 team that conquered the young dynasty of the 60’s Packers), the Eagles were a celebration of mediocrity. Still the city gathered en masse to root as one for their Philadelphia Eagles.
I don’t know when the poison set in. I don’t know why the great divide. I can point to many reasons and we’ll examine those. Suffice it is to say, the fan base that turned on their TV’s Sunday night for Super Bowl LII, the faithful that traveled to the frostbitten mecca of Minneapolis and those Philly expatriates who viewed from afar were no longer the unified base that represented EAGLES football and swore undying allegiance. There were fractures, formed of years of just not being enough, unable to take that final step, to stand along side their NFC EAST DIVISION RIVALS on the grandest stage clutching Mr. Lombardi’s trophy. But this fan base needed healing, and for this surgery to be successful, and unification to occur, it was gonna take a championship. Nothing less would do.
What is this poison you ask?
It’s not always apparent. Difficult too to recognize the symptoms. Yeah, you’ll hear the delightful, often drunken recitation of the fight song, iconic in and of itself, sung with fervor at ANY event or venue in and around Philadelphia at any moment. It sounded of unity and never felt divisive, and nationally the Eagles fan base was viewed as a singular gang of things, not to be tarried with, but there was ALWAYS an underlying air of division borne of memories of past disaster, terrible draft picks, bad management, near bankruptcy, and the Andy Reid Era that begat Chip Kelly and bubbled over into a schism that would rival Game Of Thrones for it’s complexities.
There was the House of “Tradition.” Those Eagles lifer’s now creeping up on their 9th decade who remember Pete Pihos, the consecutive NFL Title shutouts and clung to the idea that this Eagles team and it’s players didn’t appreciate the opportunity the NFL afforded, seeing today’s players as ungrateful mercenaries bonded only by paychecks with the same signature.
There were the Rozelle Kids, those who watched the legendary Chuck Bednarik level Jim Taylor and deliver the NFL title to Franklin Field in the fall of 1960, still lamenting the trade that dispatched Hall Of Fame QB Sonny Jurgensen to the Washington Redskins and began a spiral of losing that would last over a decade and accompany the franchise to their beautiful new Veterans Stadium home, illuminated by “Snowball Santa” as the legend goes and a 42-3 Monday Night Football loss memorable only for the fact that the Eagles actually faced a 3rd and 49 and graced by fans circling the Vet carrying an inflatable dog bone to let the team know exactly how they felt about current roster.
Then there was the Era Of Hope, those of us who met Dick Vermeil and his “rah rah” college coach enthusiasm that would infect the Delaware Valley and the locker room. That would carry a group of overachieving athletes to the brink of the world championship in 1980, only to experience that joyless Sunday in New Orleans that saw Ron Jaworski throw three beautiful passes (albeit to Oakland defenders) on the way to a heartbreaking defeat to a team they had defeated just weeks earlier. The Vermeil era would end with him crying “burnout” amidst an aging locker room and a roster mostly bereft of talent and not enough resources (due to trades for veterans) to replenish. This calamity would be further exacerbated by the near loss of the franchise to Arizona when the team’s owner and shepherd, Leonard Tose, would gamble away his fortune in Atlantic City and narrowly avoid legendary infamy when Norman Braman bought him out with a pledge to keep the team in South Philly.
See where I’m going with this? Enough scars yet?
Well, this patient is going to get sicker and the symptoms more dramatically visible as the team would move into the era fondly known (by some) as “Buddy Ball.” Nothing Philadelphia had experienced in sports had prepared us for James David Ryan. Blustery, boisterous, and braggadocios, Buddy arrived to take over a moribund talentless roster that he would mold into arguably the NFL’S best defense of it’s time, accompanied by the mercurial talent of Randall Cunningham at QB, yet this team would not win a playoff game despite all the accolades Buddy would receive, and he would be ignominiously sacked in ’92 for Rich Kotite and the spirit would begin anew and with the birth of sports talk radio, create a further and deepening fissure among the fans that had begun to wonder, “will it ever be our turn” and now had an outlet to place blame, excoriate management almost daily and vocally, and finally, denigrate each other for their thoughts, ideas, and reasons why we hadn’t reached the promised land of Mr. Lombardi’s trophy and the accompanying parade.
These factions were dug in now, and the pain and division would deepen as a procession of great players abandoned ship in the 90’s led by Hall Of Fame DE Reggie White, perennial All-Pro’s Seth Joyner and Keith Jackson, and lesser lights yet major contributors like Clyde Simmons, Eric Allen and Keith Byars made their departures without either compensation or replacement.
There was a light at the end of the ’90’s tunnel however, his name was Andrew Walter Reid, and he arrived along with the new QB Messiah, Donovan McNabb, to breathe life into this city. Andy Reid would ignite the fuse of the football fury with repeated forays deep into the NFL playoffs, yet would start the worst fire among the fans with his seeming unwillingness to yield to the obvious, his intractable nature and style would create the biggest and most visible wound in Eagles Nation to date. I won’t tell you how it ended. You already know if you’re reading this.
Pain and suffering.
Sleepless nights after burning and inexplicable, very often unexplainable losses versus lesser opponents, most of them at home that often left the city stunned and defeated as yet another dagger was driven deeply into our collective sports psyche, hearts, and minds. Some will say that the loss in Jacksonville at SUPER BOWL 39 was the backbreaker, the moment the fan base went into total divide as the EAGLES stood frozen in time and memory watching the clock ticking away on a season and game that seemed destined to bring home the title so thirsted for by the faithful.
I won’t go into the debacle that was the brief yet memorable reign of Chip Kelly. By now you’ve probably thrown you’re IPAD, chucked the newspaper, cancelled your subscription, and are wondering why I’m reminding you of the pain of this journey to Super Bowl LII and the miracle of Nicky Football, the football David who slew Goliath, squashed the dynasty of BELICHICK and BRADY, destroyed the Evil Empire of The House Of Kraft.
Yes, there was a healing Sunday night. Dougie P and “The Prodigal Son” Nick Foles performed a surgery unseen before in the history of this world. They reunited a fractured, wounded, often left for dead city of Eagles fans and their communities. There is no way to devalue what Doug Pederson and a stand-in QB accomplished in Minnesota. Today, we are one. No more sleepless nights. No more taunting by fans of the other NFC EAST franchises. Stand down, all of youse! Today, we are one. Doug Pederson and Nick Foles healed 58 years of suffering with 3 hours of unmatched tenacity, daring, and fearlessness that can’t be quantified in words.
But you can feel it. The city feels it. We can breathe. Today we are one. Again.
I don’t believe we’ll ever sink again to the depths that Dougie P and Nicky Football rescued us from. Hopefully not, that took nearly 60 years to accomplish. All I know for sure is that today, we are one. Wishes do come true. Even in Philadelphia, where for 58 years, our football dreams came to die. Thank you Doug. Thank you Nick. Thanks to my compadres amongst the faithful who rode this thing we live “til the wheels fell off” and beyond. Welcome to the recovery room. The surgery was successful. Let the healing begin.
New episode of N The Zone Philly available for you. In this edition, I talk more on “trusting the process” for the Sixers plus some possible moves for the Eagles. Also, plus I touch on some pop culture w/ the Mt. Airy Assassin on New Edition vs Straight Outta Compton flicks. Which was better? Who gained more money? More attention?
I welcome your comments below at this page and on our network Twitter. You can always find me on Twitter as well at @MtAiryPhil.
N The Zone has landed it’s next flag in the great city of Philadelphia! I, Phil Allen (@MtAiryPhil) aka The King of Mt. Airy bring you N The Zone Philly! Whether it’s the beloved Sixers, Eagles, Phillies or Flyers, I will bring the HEAT to the fans! In this edition of the show, it’s “The Evolution of the Sixers.” The time is now for the Sixers to get back to playoff glory. Check out the show below.
With the arrival of the NFL draft approaching, there has been no let down when it comes to wheeling and dealing by teams looking to inject something positive into their franchise with a game changing player. Last week the Los Angeles Rams traded their first round pick (Number 15), two second round picks (43 &45), a third round pick (76), and the Tennessee Titans will get Rams first and third round picks in 2017. That’s what the Rams gave up for the number one overall pick in the draft. This will mark the second time the Rams have picked number one overall since 2010.
And in 2010, while the Rams where still residing in St.Louis, they decided to draft Sam Bradford with that pick. That pick failed to live up to the hype of an elite quarterback, with the former Heisman winner receiving a 6-year, $78 million dollar contract ($50 million of it guaranteed). Bradford was just a tease, he had all the tools to make himself one of the best in the NFL, but he lacked the most important ingredient any football player should have – and that’s heart.
He was coddled by the press – and it got worse when Jeff Fisher became head coach in 2012. But last year, in an unexpected twist, Bradford was dealt to the Philadelphia Eagles for Nick Foles. Fisher was perturbed that Sam Bradford wouldn’t take a pay cut, especially after several other veterans did so. Most thought that once Sam Bradford got away from the Rams his star would rise and he would prove naysayers wrong.
And boy he did over achieve. He went 7-7 as a starter for the Eagles putting his career record at a “dazzling” 25-37-1. A “eye-popping” winning percentage of .405, yet he bolstered 19 TD’s with 14 interceptions and 3,725 passing yards. His career totals are 78 TDs/52 INTs and 14,790 yards. These are some of the most deceiving numbers you’ll see a starting QB have without taking one single snap in the playoffs.
Now Sam Bradford is demanding a trade from the Eagles. Just a month ago they signed him to a two year deal for $35 million, with 22 of it being guaranteed. This is happening all because the Eagles, just like the Rams, made a huge deal with the Cleveland Browns to land the number two pick in this year draft.
The Eagles traded (No.8) pick and fourth round pick this year – and traded away first round pick in 2017 and second round pick in 2018. The Eagles will more than likely use that pick on a QB.
Philadelphia Eagles Executive VP of football operations Howie Roseman is quoted in an ESPN.com story by Phil Sheridan as saying “Let me be clear. Sam Bradford is our starting QB. We told him that.” Not that it mattered to Bradford. He threw a tantrum and is now demanding a trade. Talk about entitlement – this guy has the gall to throw a fit because the Eagles want to draft a QB with the second pick.
He should be doing all types of praise dancing after stinking up the Edward Jones Dome for four years, getting traded and collecting every penny of that rookie contract – only to have the Eagles gift wrap an additional 22 million guaranteed. He’s never had to fight for a job as the starter his entire career, and he can’t even handle competing against either Carson Wentz, Jared Goff or former Missouri Tigers QB Chase Daniel. We are seeing the real guy now and it’s more than unflattering.
According to NFL Insider Ian Rapoport, the Eagles feel blindsided by Bradford’s trade request. “Too much dead cap $11m if they trade him before June 1 Broncos and Jets seem good spots though #NFL #shutUpSam,” says longtime Philadelphia radio host Phil Allen (now program director for 98.5 FM and contributor to NTheZone), said via Twitter.
That was about the cleanest tweet I could find coming out of the city of Brotherly Love.
Sam Bradford has fooled us all for years. He’s managed to get over 100 million playing a shade over .400 football, no playoffs and shaky health.
“That could never happen here.” Ask any loyal, green bleeding die-hard fan of the Philadelphia Eagles, the answer will be the same. Could the NFL franchise which has existed in some form here since 1933 ever leave? Impossible, you’d think. Rabid fan base? Check. 4th largest TV market? Check. History and tradition? Double check! Yet, as I’ve watched the St. Louis Rams snatch the NFL outta Missouri and head for LA, I exhale and thank the sports Gods, because that was supposed to be us. Yup. The Eagles, Cardinals, and now the LA RAMS are forever enjoined in a power play that ultimately left only the Eagles unscathed.
1984. The NFL season is winding down, the Eagles are a desultory 6-9-1 just three seasons removed from a Super Bowl loss to the Raiders. Dick Vermeil has exited the stage, in a sobbing press conference where he describes himself as burnt-out by the 7 day a week grind of coaching in the NFL. Some would say he abandoned ship after trading the future for the present, leaving the Birds bereft of draft picks and under the stewardship of Marion Campbell, who I don’t think will ever be confused with Hank Stram. Whispers around the city begin. Owner Leonard Tose is 42 million in debt and is considering selling the team. No problem, most think, new owner, new money, new beginnings for a franchise badly in need of a fresh start. Then the word gets out that the new money is a Phoenix real estate mogul named Monaghan who has no intention of staying in Philadelphia. The Eagles hold a press conference where a sobbing Leonard Tose tells the city, “The Eagles will NEVER leave, they belong to you as much as they do to me.” This soothes the masses for as long as it takes an enterprising reporter to learn that his daughter, team President Susan Fletcher, is in Arizona finding schools for her children. Ultimately, the Eagles would stay. Saved by a combination of Tose’s inability to withstand a long and threatened legal battle, a sweetheart of a new stadium lease and additional luxury suites, and finally the sale to Norman Braman for 65 million (43 million went straight to the casinos, they’d get the rest later) and Leonard Tose would die penniless in 2003, his only means of support being Dick Vermeil, who supported him financially for nearly a decade.
But Bill Bidwell saw the money, infrastructure, and thirst of the Arizona desert and jumped into the breach, taking the Cardinals out of St. Louis to Glendale in 1987, leaving the city without NFL football for 8 seasons until the Rams would arrive to save the day. I apologize. I couldn’t help it. But know that I feel for the people of Missouri who lost jobs, lost professional relationships, but most importantly, lost the investment of their passion and souls to a carpetbagger who I don’t believe ever had the intention of staying, or even negotiating the future of the franchise in good faith. So it didn’t happen to us, but it was close. That’s enough for me to root for a quick return to the NFL for St. Louis. I think it happens. Build a stadium. Share it with an MLS franchise. There’s not one in America losing money today. Give both teams the same name. Target a return in 2021. Meanwhile we’ll root for the LA team to play like the St. Louis version did for the past few seasons. Forever.
You can find me each week on N The Zone. You can follow me on Twitter: @MtAiryPhil
The A-Train here. I am very excited because we have added another contributor to the N The Zone family. We are continuing to grow and ready to take on the “City to City, State to State, Worldwide” theme as it’s said on our podcast.
So folks, I present to you Phil Allen! Allen, aka @MtAiryPhil is a long suffering Philadelphia sports junkie, journalist and broadcaster who spent nearly a decade as the Eagles postgame show host, and ESPN RADIO Philly weekend studio host. He is also a special contributor at 900AM WURD and was featured in E-A-G-L-E-S The Movie!
But enough about that, I’ll let him do the talking for sure. Take it, Phil.
Excited? Yup! Intimidated? Little bit. I mean, it’s the A-Train, Arlington Lane and a brother aptly named the “Legend Killer” Palmer Alexander, whom I watched hold the St. Louis Rams front office, the City Council, and pretty much all of Missouri’s feet to the fire as the process that culminated in the Rams exodus to LA played itself out. Finally, it’s in N The Zone Radio/Podcast and as a listener, I can hear the coals roasting (along with some guests) on the fire. Let’s keep it 100, I can’t wait. I’m honored to contribute to N The Zone.
So what do I bring? I don’t know. The pain of a lifetime waiting for a Super Bowl Champion? 42 years without a Stanley Cup Title? Season tickets to an NBA team currently 9-62 that is 33 years removed from it’s last parade?
Here’s what I know for sure. We will create broadcasts that are memorable, informative, and I believe, have the air of a world heavyweight title match in the moments when the ring is empty, and the combatants stand poised in the entryway, awaiting music, pyrotechnics, and the dulcet tones of Michael Buffer.
The Sound of Philadelphia meets the Blues of St. Louis…the East Coast rat race merged with the Midwestern drawl and the history shared by Eagles-Cardinals long time rivalry, the recent detonation of Phillies baseball dreams by the DeScalsos’, Ecksteins’, Schumakers’ plus a heaping dose of Chris Carpenter.