The Philadelphia Eagles play in the NFL’s National Football Conference (NFC) in the East Division. They were created in 1933 as a NFL expansion team. Philadelphia was awarded the franchise after the NFL’s bankrupt Frankford Yellow Jackets were dissolved in 1931. A syndicate of businessmen that was led by Bert Bell and Lud Wray first owned the Eagles.
From 1933-1949, Philadelphia played in the Eastern Division. In 1943, World War II diminished the number of available professional football players and the NFL contracted. For one year, the Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers combined their franchises becoming the Philadelphia-Pittsburgh “Steagles.” In 1944, as players became more abundant, the Eagles and Steelers separated their franchises.
The NFL realigned teams in 1950, which led to Philadelphia being placed in the American Conference. In 1953, the club was assigned to the Capitol Division of the Eastern Conference. In 1970 when the American Football League (AFL) and NFL merged, the Eagles became part of the NFC East.
The late 1940s marked a significant time for the club as they won three NFL East Division Championships (1947, 1948, 1949) and two league titles (1948, 1949). In 1960, they won their fourth NFL East crown and third NFL Championship. Since being in the NFC East, the Eagles have won seven division titles, including five top spots from 2001 through 2006, missing the division championship in 2005. They also won the NFC East in 1980 and 1988.
The Eagles have been to the Super Bowl twice, winning the NFC in 1980 and 2004. In Super Bowl XV, the Oakland Raiders defeated the Eagles 27-10. Super Bowl XXXIX was a bit closer as the New England Patriots won the game by a score of 24-21.
The Eagles have had close to 20 players/coaches inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, including quarterback Sonny Jurgensen (1957-1963 Eagles and 1964-1974 Washington Redskins), defensive end Reggie White (1985-1992 Eagles; 1993-1998 Green Bay Packers and 2000 Carolina Panthers) and running back Steve Van Buren (1944-1951).
Jurgensen, who played more than half of his career with the Redskins, earned a lifetime QB rating of 82.6 while throwing 255 touchdowns. He was a five-time All-Pro and Pro Bowler. White, who was a Pro Bowler and All-Pro 13 times, garnered 1,112 tackles, 198 sacks and three interceptions. He was selected to the NFL 1980s and 1990s All-Decade Teams. In his career, Van Buren, who ran for 5,860 yards and made 69 touchdowns, averaged 4.4 yards per carry. He played on two Eagle championship teams and was a seven-time All-Pro. He was selected to the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team and to the NFL 1940s All-Decade Team.
The Philadelphia team’s eagle logo was inspired by the symbol of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal. The Eagles, who were viewed as an entirely new club, did not carryover any of the Yellow Jackets’ records. The team mascot is Swoop, which is a larger-than-life eagle portrayed by a person in an eagle costume. “Fly, Eagles, Fly” is the football team’s fight song.
The club has played at numerous stadiums. Their first homes included the Baker Bowl (1933-1935), Philadelphia Municipal Stadium (1936-1939 and 1941) and Connie Mack Stadium (1940; 1942-1957). Connie Mack Stadium was also known as Shibe Park from 1940-1953.
Franklin Field became the team’s home in 1958. The Eagles perched their team at that venue until 1971 when they moved to Veterans Stadium. In 2003, the club moved into Lincoln Financial Field, which is also known as “The Linc.” The venue holds over 69,000.
Jeffrey Lurie has owned the team since 1994. Tom Heckert is the clubs GM, a position he’s held since 2006 and Andy Reid has been the head coach since 1999. With the Eagles Reid is 96-62-0 overall.