Dr. J was the first athlete I ever loved. He had a cool nickname. He was a great player. He did things that other guys just couldn’t. Doc holds a special place in my heart to this day.
Reggie White is the football version of Dr. J for me. I’ve loved Reggie since the 1980s. He’s one of the key reasons that I became an Eagles fan.
Today would have been his 52nd birthday.
Reggie gave me a lifetime of memories, even though I only watched him as an Eagle for a few years. 1992 was the first year I got to watch Reggie play almost every Sunday. He “only” had 14 sacks that year. That statement really puts him into perspective, doesn’t it? White got a safety in the playoff win over the Saints and his celebration of that is my favorite all-time Eagles moment. There is such joy, both in his huge smile and in the bounce in his step. That was just a Wild Card win, but it felt like the Super Bowl to a team that hadn’t won in the postseason in more than a decade. I was absolutely desperate for Gang Green to win big in the postseason.
I hated the fact White left via free agency, but I understood. Norman Braman wasn’t interested in keeping him and paying big bucks. I am thankful that Reggie went to a team that I could support. I never even thought of becoming a Packers fan mind you, but I cheered for them when they weren’t playing the Eagles. Reggie did talk to the Boys and Skins about going to those teams. I would have been crushed if he did that. Honestly, I’m not sure how I’d have handled it.
It was great to see him win the Super Bowl in 1996. My dream was for him to win as an Eagle, but it was still great to see him hoist the Lombardi in Packers green.
Gone, but never, ever forgotten.
Happy Birthday to my favorite Eagle and football player ever.