The most miserable seasons in Eagles history


This month Soccer Outsiders is rating their Anti-Dynasties, “honoring” groups that have been actually dangerous for some time. It’s a enjoyable idea, however the execution is a little bit bland. We’re lucky that for many of your life the Eagles have been no less than an above common staff. Since 1978, the Eagles have made the playoffs 22 occasions and missed them 20.

It’s been a very long time for the reason that Eagles have been persistently dangerous. However we’ve had some completely depressing particular person seasons. Let’s drill down a little bit and giggle on the distress that has been endured by some really depressing groups in Eagles historical past. Not all dangerous groups are created equal. Andy Reid went 5-11 in 1999, solely 4 groups had a worse report. That’s an objectively dangerous staff, and it definitely wasn’t something approaching enjoyable. However it wasn’t depressing both, as a result of there may be pleasure in having a brand new coach, and in having a high draft choose QB. These seasons could have began with pleasure however by the point the ultimate sport was performed, all that was left was struggling.

We’ll restrict this to the Tremendous Bowl period, as a result of in any other case we’d have to incorporate the primary ten seasons of the Eagles historical past, amongst different eye sores. We’ll look at the components that go into making a staff depressing to observe.

File: Duh. However this isn’t merely a listing of groups with horrible data. In some circumstances the staff profitable truly made it worse.

Was it the coach’s final 12 months? Most, however not all depressing seasons finish with the coach getting fired.

First spherical bust? The additional again in soccer historical past you go, the much less vital draft picks have been. However there’s all the time a distress issue when the staff’s high rookie can’t play. No less than a nasty staff with a superb rookie can provide a little bit hope.

The QBs: Even within the three yards and a cloud of mud days, a fairly good indicator {that a} staff is having a depressing 12 months is how dangerous the QB scenario was.

League extensive ineptitude: Simply how depressing have been they in comparison with their friends? Spoiler warning: these are going to be some terrible offenses. The Eagles have been lucky to have good defenses for many of their historical past within the Tremendous Bowl period. The spine of the Vermeil, Ryan, Kotite, Rhodes, Reid and Pederson eras have been high quality defenses, even in awful seasons. When the Eagles have been pathetic, the offense has been the principle offender.

Further demerit: Distress loves firm, however every dangerous season is completely different. We’ll look at what makes every staff uniquely terrible.

Distress issue: My fully subjective take of how pathetic this season was.

1994 – Don’t depend your chickens earlier than they hatch

File: 7-9, but it surely’s how they received there that issues.

Coach’s ultimate season? Sure. Wealthy Kotite was fired on the finish of the season.

First spherical bust? Bernard Williams, chosen 14th total, began each sport his rookie 12 months. He by no means performed once more after being suspended by the league for failing a number of drug assessments.

The QBs: Randall Cunningham (7-7) was benched for Bubby Brister (0-2).

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? The Eagles began 7-2, which skews issues. Of their ultimate seven video games the protection grabbed 14 turnovers. The offense dedicated 13. In his first 9 video games, Cunningham had a passer score of 85, which might have been fifth greatest over the course of the season, tying a profession greatest rating. He was on tempo for 25 TDs, which might have been his second greatest complete, and 3996 yards, simply a profession greatest. In his ultimate 5, it was 58, which might have been final. In these ultimate 5 video games he threw simply two touchdowns, each in the identical sport.

Further demerit: Within the spring of 1994 Jeffery Lurie purchased the Eagles. It was too late within the NFL 12 months to vary coaches, and Cunningham missed 12 video games in 1993, so truthful or not Kotite was on skinny ice. Lurie publicly declined to again Kotite, saying that he would consider the scenario after the season. In Week 10 the Eagles received to enhance their report to 7-2, which included a 40-8 blowout of the 49ers, who would go on to win the Tremendous Bowl. Driving excessive after that Week 10 win in opposition to his predecessor and former boss Buddy Ryan, Kotite sarcastically introduced up Lurie’s non-committal feedback. He needed to be feeling actually good about that.

The Eagles misplaced the remainder of their video games, and Kotite misplaced his job.

Within the ultimate sport of the season the Bengals kicked a subject aim with 7 seconds to go to tie the sport, having trailed by 10 late within the 4th quarter. The Eagles fumbled the kickoff return. The Bengals kicked one other subject aim. That’s just about the story of the season.

Distress issue: This staff makes the listing as a result of beginning 7-2 and ending with a dropping report with out main accidents is sort of merely pathetic. After we discuss nice video games, we normally imply video games with nice 4th quarters, we normally don’t discuss a landing drive halfway via the 2nd quarter. The identical is true for seasons, and the other is true for dangerous seasons.

What works in opposition to this staff is that no one favored Wealthy Kotite (besides then-Jets proprietor Leon Hess, who stated he wished to win now and fired Pete Carroll and employed Kotite, who went 1-15). A joke of an ending to the season, but it surely closed the guide on the pre-Lurie period. Had Kotite made the playoffs it will have been onerous to fireplace him (although not unattainable), and if you wish to go down the What If rabbit gap, bringing Kotite again for an additional 12 months (assuming he would get fired after 1995) means possibly his alternative will get 4 years simply as Ray Rhodes did, so possibly they by no means get to rent Andy Reid… the butterfly impact will mess together with your thoughts.

1968 – Eagles drop the Juice

File: 2-12, the 2 wins solely made it worse.

Coach’s ultimate season? Sure. Joe Kuharich can be fired on the finish of the season, he had eleven years left on his contract. You learn that proper.

First spherical bust? No. Tim Rossovich, drafted 14th total, was a strong participant who would make the Professional Bowl in 1973. He was an attention-grabbing character.

The QBs: Norm Snead broke his ankle in coaching camp, when he returned he went 2-9. In his stead King Hill [great name] (0-2), and John Huarte (0-1) held down the fort prefer it was the Alamo. QBs on this period turned the ball over a ton in comparison with right now, however the 1968 trio have been distinctive. All three QBs had a 2:1 INT to TD price. Snead tied for the league lead with 21 (to simply 11 TDs), his co-leader performed in 3 extra video games and had over 100 extra makes an attempt. In a 45-13 loss to the Cowboys, Hill had 5 INTs.

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? third worst report within the league, which truly made it extra depressing than ending useless final. Extra on that subsequent. The 1968 Eagles have been fifteenth out of sixteenth in scoring offense, and thirteenth in scoring protection, “aided” by probably the most turnovers on offense and least on protection. This was a basic dangerous at all the things staff, and that included being dangerous at being dangerous…

Further demerit: What made this staff particularly depressing wasn’t their ineptitude, and to be clear they have been inept, it was that they shit the mattress at being dangerous. If a season just like the 1968 Eagles occurred now, a phase of the fan base can be apoplectic, and that’s not a judgement on them. Bear in mind how the 2020 Jets have been on monitor to draft Trevor Lawrence, they then had a profitable streak? That was the 1968 Eagles. They began off the season dropping 11 straight video games, a franchise report. They have been within the driver’s seat for the highest choose within the 1969 draft, O.J. Simpson. At 0-6 they performed the 0-6 Steelers in what was dubbed “The O.J. Bowl.” They in fact misplaced. At 0-11, Simpson was in sight. However then they received two video games in a row, which dropped them to 3rd within the draft, the place they chose operating again Leroy Keyes, who was so dangerous they moved him to security in 1971.

Distress issue: This was a very pathetic season, greatest remembered because the season with Santa Claus. I’m sorry to even point out it. However it has two issues that preserve it low on the listing for me, each of that are in hindsight. One is that blowing the highest choose that 12 months wasn’t that large a miss as a result of the franchise was so incompetent. Simpson didn’t flip the Payments, an equally dangerous franchise on the time, round. There’s no purpose to consider he would have turned the Eagles round. It might have been higher to have an excellent participant than a bust, but it surely’s not like they missed out on Peyton Manning and took Ryan Leaf.

The opposite one is rarely having to listen to “Eagles legend O.J. Simpson”.

2015 – I want to communicate to the supervisor

File: 7-9

Coach’s ultimate season? Oh yeah. Chip Kelly was fired earlier than the season was over. He’s the one coach in Eagles historical past who in his tenure made the playoffs in a single 12 months and in one other 12 months was fired earlier than the season ended.

First spherical bust? Ultimately Nelson Agholor can be a superb cog in a Tremendous Bowl winner, however earlier than then he regarded ineffective.

The QBs: Sam Bradford (7-7) in fact missed time, giving method to Mark Sanchez (0-2).

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? The offense completed thirteenth in scoring and twelfth in yards. The protection was twenty eighth in factors and thirtieth in yards. Each of those have been deceptive as a result of each items have been on the sphere a lot as a result of the offense ran so many mediocre performs at excessive tempo.

Solely 4 groups punted greater than the Eagles, and solely 4 turned the ball over extra on a per drive foundation. The offense was seventh in passing makes an attempt and twenty first in yards per try, and twenty ninth in yards per catch. They have been twenty seventh in proportion of offensive possessions ending in a rating. The offense averaged a dismal 2:03 time of possession per drive. The following worst staff averaged 2:18. No less than it was over shortly. It’s just like the Woody Allen joke “the meals right here is horrible, and in such small parts.”

Further demerit: Successful double digit video games in again to again seasons is normally sufficient to save lots of a coach from following it up with a 7 win season. Often. The whole lot that led to Chip Kelly’s firing was his personal doing, and it was downright depressing.

Sam Bradford was dreadful. DeMarco Murray was pathetic on and off the sphere, complaining to Jeffery Lurie on the staff airplane about taking part in time after a win. Miles Austin performed in 11 video games and caught 13 passes. Riley Cooper existed. On the identical day they signed Murray, in addition they signed Ryan Mathews. And that was due to Frank Gore. After the season Walter Thurmond retired and tried his hand at skilled wrestling. LeSean McCoy was traded for Kiko Alonso, who didn’t even begin. Byron Maxwell received paid. The brilliant aspect was the signing of Malcolm Jenkins, however Kelly couldn’t even get that proper, he was plan B after failing to signal Devin McCourty.

And but via all of this, what value Kelly his job was that he was an ungrateful asshole. In what might be overstated however indicative of the way it was going behind the scenes, Kelly received Lurie to rearrange his beloved vacation social gathering so he may put together for the subsequent sport. In that sport the Eagles gave up 4 TDs to Kirk Cousins. After which in fact with a woeful season taking place the drain after being given full management of the roster, Kelly nailed his coffin shut by bizarrely claiming he wasn’t the GM of the staff. See ya.

Distress issue: This staff was one way or the other simply two years away from profitable the Tremendous Bowl. So it’s a little bit onerous to evaluate this staff harshly, typically it is advisable to take a step again to take a number of ahead. However on the time this was 2011 yet again, a coach going insane with free company/trades and placing out a depressing product.

What made 2015 infuriating was {that a} 12 months and a half earlier Chip Kelly regarded like an offense genius, by the tip of his tenure he ran an exceptionally bland offense and didn’t appear bothered to care.

2020 – All good issues should come to an finish, and dangerous issues too

File: 4-11-1. One other distress bonus tie!

Coach’s ultimate season? Sure, however even that was screwed up. The Eagles didn’t finish the season intending to fireplace Doug Pederson, however they did.

First spherical bust? It’s too early to be definitive, but it surely’s not wanting nice for Jalen Reagor.

The QBs: Carson Wentz (3-8-1) was benched for Jalen Hurts (1-3), who was benched for Nate Sudfeld.

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? That is nonetheless recent in our minds so let’s simply take the nickel tour. Carson Wentz co-led the league in interceptions with 15, and solely two gamers had greater than his 10 fumbles, which is absolutely noteworthy since he was benched for 4 and a half video games. Jalen Hurts had 9 turnovers in 4 begins; his 9 fumbles on the season was sixth most within the league. The offense was final in completion proportion, yards per try, and sack price, and have been tenth in go makes an attempt, so there was plenty of dangerous QB play to observe. It was 1998 yet again (extra on them later).

Further demerit: By the tip of the season it was clear that both the coach who received the goddamn Tremendous Bowl or the QB who helped get them there with an MVP caliber season was going to go. In the long run each have been gone, and neither was upset about it.

Distress issue: 2020 was as unhappy because it was depressing. Doug Pederson received the Tremendous Bowl and Carson Wentz was a giant purpose why. These ought to have been good occasions, however a number of years later they barely talked to one another. The clock runs out on everybody, even coaches, however the suddenness was maddening. The 2020 season was not dissimilar to some other staff’s dangerous season that ended with double digit losses, the coach getting fired, and main adjustments to the roster. These seasons nearly by no means come a number of years after profitable the Tremendous Bowl.

2011 – A nightmare

File: 8-8. The 2012 Eagles have been a worse staff. However this isn’t a listing of dangerous groups, it’s a listing of depressing groups, and the 2011 staff was extra depressing. No less than for 2012 expectations had been lowered. In 2011, the Eagles had Tremendous Bowl expectations.

Coach’s ultimate season? No, Andy Reid received yet another 12 months. It didn’t go effectively.

First spherical bust? Danny Watkins has as robust a declare as anybody for greatest draft bust in Eagles historical past, and I want to level out that the primary draft choose within the historical past of the NFL was by the Eagles, Jay Berwanger, who by no means performed within the NFL. Watkins was worse.

The QBs: Mike Vick (7-6), with Vince Younger (1-2) showing in aid, whereas Mike Kafka got here off the bench twice and threw 2 INTs on simply 16 makes an attempt.

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? The one factor the 2011 Eagles cherished to offer away greater than cash was the ball. The offense was eighth in factors and 4th in yards. The protection was tenth in factors and eighth in yards. These are Tremendous Bowl contender rankings. However they have been thirty first in offensive turnovers. They threw extra interceptions (25) than touchdowns (22), these 25 INTs led the league. They turned the ball over a number of occasions in 12 video games. Younger threw 8 INTs in three begins. Vick had a turnover in 11 of his 13 video games. The one sport they didn’t flip the ball over was the sport after their bye.

Further demerit: The place to start. Oh, the place to start. The warning indicators have been all over the place.

Making Juan Castillo the defensive coordinator after hiring Jim Washburn to educate the line of defense was past weird.

There was the lockout. Undecided how or when free company would even happen, Reid dedicated the draft day sin of utilizing the draft to plug holes on the roster because it existed on that day. He wanted an offensive lineman, so he drafted a 27 12 months previous fireman pretending to be one. He wanted a security, so he drafted one. He wanted a kicker, so he drafted one.

When free company lastly occurred, Reid placed on a grasp class of what to not do. The Cowboys thought that they had reached a cope with Nnamdi Asomugha however Reid swooped in and signed him, an obvious coup that was in actuality crap. Additionally regrettably signed or traded for have been Jason Babin, Ryan Harris, Cullen Jenkins, Ronnie Brown, Jarrad Web page, Donald Lee, the lesser Steve Smith, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and Vince Younger. The one brightside was Evan Mathis.

Then there have been the video games. A staff that had sky excessive expectations began 1-4, then was 3-6, then was 4-8. They have been on the highway to justifiably eliminating everybody. However then they received 4 straight in opposition to dropping groups to complete on a excessive of excellent mediocrity at 8-8, a sport out of the playoffs. 4-12 would have completed final within the division.

Distress issue: There have been worse groups by statistical measures and by data, however for a “fuck this staff” issue, the Dream Staff is difficult to high. Fuck that staff.

1998 – An offensive offense

File: 3-13, the worst Eagles report within the 16 sport period.

Coach’s ultimate season? Sure, Ray Rhodes was fired on the finish of the 12 months.

First spherical bust? Not within the least. Tra Thomas was drafted eleventh total. That draft additionally produced Jeremiah Trotter, Allen Rossum, Brandon Whiting, and Ike Reese. No less than one thing went proper.

The QBs: Three gamers began video games at QB. To name them QBs is an insult to the gamers who’ve performed QB. Bobby Hoying (1-6), Koy Detmer (1-4), and Rodney Peete (1-3) all received one sport, no less than they have been constant at that. And constant at sucking.

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? The 1998 Eagles have been, adjusting for context, the worst offense in Eagles historical past. It was one of many worst offenses within the 16 sport season period in NFL historical past, solely 6 groups scored fewer factors. By Professional Soccer Reference’s Easy Offensive Ranking System, the 1998 Eagles have been the worst in franchise historical past, and it isn’t shut. The 1972 offense was -9.2, the 1998 offense was -12.3. That could be a hole of three.1, the subsequent greatest hole in Eagles historical past is 1.5.

They scored 10.1 factors per sport. You need to go all the best way again to 1940 to search out an Eagles offense that scored so few factors per sport, and that staff wasn’t even the worst offense within the league. The offenses of the Thirties Eagles scored fewer factors per sport, however relative to the league the offense wasn’t as dangerous because the 1998 version. The 1936 Eagles scored the fewest factors in franchise historical past with 51 in 12 video games. The second to worst offense within the league that 12 months scored 74 factors, the Eagles scored 68.9% of the full of the subsequent worst staff. The 1998 Eagles scored 66.8% of the full of the subsequent worst staff. How they received there was spectacular. You’d assume they turned the ball over at will, however they have been solely thirteenth in turnovers. They ran the ball pretty effectively, seventh in dashing yards per try and have been nineteenth in dashing touchdowns. The protection was, all issues thought-about, respectable, nineteenth in factors in opposition to and seventeenth in yards. A staff this dangerous needs to be dangerous at all the things, however they weren’t.

They merely couldn’t go the ball, and once they did it didn’t go anyplace. The Eagles have been 12 in passing makes an attempt and final in each yards and touchdowns. They have been twenty sixth in completion proportion, and useless final in TD%, yards per try, yards per catch, and yards per sport. Duce Staley, who’s in fact a operating again, led the staff in receptions, and he didn’t even begin each sport. They threw simply 7 TDs. Seven.

Further demerit: This staff has to report for Saturday college.

-They have been shut out thrice. Three!

-The extra time they needed to put together, the more severe they have been. They misplaced the season opener 38-0 to the Seahawks. The season opener! That they had all summer season to arrange for that and so they misplaced 38-0. Their post-bye sport—on a Monday evening for an additional day of preparation—was a 34-0 loss to the Cowboys. Two of their wins got here on brief weeks: one was the week after that MNF loss, one other was a Thursday evening sport.

-Their three wins have been by a mixed 9 factors.

-They scored 20+ factors as soon as. They misplaced.

-On the finish of the 1997 season, Bobby Hoying was a little bit of a sizzling commodity. The Eagles went 2-3-1 with him on the finish of a 6-9-1 season, and he threw 11 TDs to six INTs. He completed the season tenth in passer score. There was optimism, and it wasn’t unwarranted.

Hoying by no means threw one other TD in his profession. In his profession.

-1998 marked the second straight season that the Eagles didn’t win a sport on the highway, going 0-7-1 in 1997 and 0-8 in 1998.

-Chris Boniol made solely 66.7% of his subject aim makes an attempt.

-In a 13-10 loss to the Ryan Leaf led Chargers, Charlie Gardner rushed 9 occasions for 8 yards, a type of makes an attempt was for 12 yards. So the opposite 8 makes an attempt have been for -4 yards.

-The offense had extra fumbles (20) than touchdowns (17).

-If each interception they threw for was magically become a landing, the Eagles would solely end ninth in passing touchdowns.

-If each turnover was magically become a landing, they wouldn’t have a high 10 scoring offense.

–The NFL Movies recap principally gaslights the 12 months. Within the opening Pat Summerall says the season “did have its share of thrilling moments” it then exhibits one (1) play from 1998 and instantly transitions right into a preview of the 1999 season.

-The offensive coordinator to begin the season was Dana Bible, who took over for Jon Gruden after he left to educate the Raiders. Bible, besmirching the identify of faculty soccer legend Dana X Bible, was fired halfway via the season. He’s nonetheless teaching. That is too good to be true but it surely’s completely true, you’ll be able to look it up: he’s teaching for Chip Kelly.

Distress issue: Probably the most inept offense in franchise historical past places this staff close to the highest of the listing. However the remainder of the staff was too good to take the highest spot. You possibly can have a look at this staff and assume they have been a QB and a coach away from being a superb staff. And also you’d be proper. Two years later, they went 11-5 and received a playoff sport. 8 starters on offense and protection from 1998 have been starters in 2000, and three extra have been backups. In a approach that makes the season extra depressing if it wasn’t for the offense being such crap the staff wouldn’t be dangerous. However there was a worse staff.

1972 – A brand new low

File: 2-11-1. A tie is a distress bonus!

Coach’s ultimate season? Sure. Ed Khayat took over halfway via 1971, he was fired after the 1972 season. In 1987 he would win Area Soccer Coach of the 12 months!

First spherical bust? In a time when groups have been giving freely first spherical picks in trades like they have been nothing, John Reeves, drafted 14th total, was worse than nothing. He led the NFL with a sack price of 14.5% and threw an interception in 8 of the 11 video games he appeared in. He’d stick round as a backup within the NFL (and USFL starter) till 1987, however after 1972 he tried solely 39 passes for the Eagles, and threw an INT on three of them.

The QBs: John Reaves (0-7) and Pete Liske (2-4-1) break up duties.

How dangerous have been they in comparison with the remainder of the league? They have been a humiliation.

Their 145 factors scored was a report for ineptitude, the bottom quantity of factors scored in a 14 sport season on the time. It might be damaged in 1974, however in 1972 it was the low water mark of the league.

The 1972 Eagles performed 14 video games. In half of them they failed to attain even 10 factors. They have been shutout as soon as, and twice scored 3, 6, and seven factors.

It wasn’t simply the offense that made this staff extremely pathetic. The protection was twenty second out of 26 in scoring, twenty fourth in yards, and twenty third in yards per play. That they had the 2nd worst sack price and the worst yards per passing try. They gave up the third most passing touchdowns and the 4th most dashing touchdowns. They did nothing effectively.

Further demerit:

-Their two wins have been every by a single level.

-That they had two dashing touchdowns. The following worst staff had 5.

-Forward of a Week 11 sport on the Giants, proprietor Leonard Tose predicted the 2-7-1 Eagles would beat the 6-4 Giants. The Giants received 62-10.

-In a 28-7 loss to the Cowboys, Reaves threw for 85 yards and was sacked for 62 yards. Liske dropped again thrice and was sacked on two of them. It’s a miracle they scored in any respect.

-In a 14-0 loss to Washington, Po James had 14 carries for 14 yards. A type of dashing makes an attempt was for 12 yards, which means that the opposite 13 makes an attempt he had went for two yards.

-In a 34-3 loss to the Rams, Tony Baker had 4 carries for 10 yards, his longest carry was 11 yards. You are able to do the mathematics on that one. On this sport the Eagles have been sacked for extra yards (68) than they ran for (47).

-The Bears’ Bobby Douglass went 1-9 (for 44 yards, lol), the Eagles misplaced 21-12.

-Of their 18-17 win over the much more hapless Oilers, the Eagles didn’t rating a landing. Tom Dempsey went 6 for 7 on subject objectives.

-That they had the fifth fewest first downs and gave up the third most. The offense averaged 14.5 first downs a sport. The protection gave up that many in all however two video games.

-That they had the worst per sport scoring differential in Eagles historical past at -14.8, and have the worst complete level differential in staff historical past regardless of solely taking part in 14 video games.

Distress issue: For those who doubled their scoring in each sport they might have completed 6-8. So in the event that they have been twice pretty much as good, they’d nonetheless be dangerous.

Think about having to sit down via this slop all 12 months lengthy. That they had two 5 sport dropping streaks. The adopted their second win of the season with a web passing of 6 yards. They adopted an upset of the Chiefs with a loss to the then winless Saints. Within the 5 video games the place the protection had 3 or extra turnovers, they went 1-4. The protection gave up lower than 300 yards in 4 video games, they went 1-2-1. Additionally they went 1-2-1 in video games the place they outgained their opponent.

They solely misplaced one sport by a single rating as a result of the remainder of their losses weren’t aggressive. Their common margin of victory was dropping by two touchdowns. They misplaced their 12 video games by a median of 19 factors.

The offense was traditionally inept, and the protection was complete trash. That is probably the most depressing staff in Eagles historical past. Till the subsequent one.


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