Don’t think for a second that the reason why Philadelphia sports teams don’t win a lot of championships has nothing to do with the fans. It does — albeit in a less direct way than most might think. It isn’t the fans putting pressure on the teams that has caused generations of our athletes to dependably crumble in crunchtime — it’s the media machine feeding them.

It’s the lowest common denominator yakety bullshit we allow ourselves to accept as genuine sports coverage in this city. It’s Tony Bruno wrapped in Angelo Cataldi screaming at some fatso cramming wings down his gullet at 7AM on a weekday. THAT’S the stuff that makes athletes badmouth our city after they leave. The sheer weight of this sports media madness we call normal life in Philadelphia.

If our sports talk stations, Kabletown sports network, conglomerate newspapers, and other outlets who consider themselves “professional” can sell us rumors and fodder and pass it off as journalism with no repercussions and still maintain high ratings, then the result has shown to severely negatively impact the players who are forced to live this stuff 24/7. Pick any number of athletes who’ve complained about the media here. Jason Babin is right when he says they ask nothing but loaded questions in an attempt to out-scoop the other outlets. That’s exactly what the blog/radio/tv culture is like in Philadelphia, and for whatever reason it’s FAR more ravenous here than in most other cities. That’s probably the reason why ESPN hasn’t even attempted to open a ESPNPhilly site in our town. Babin may still be a goofy prick with dumb tattoos and declining skills, but it doesn’t mean what he said was wrong.

So keep this in mind when you’re reading stories about how the Eagles are going to need many years to rebuild and how the sky is falling and how this is the end of everything forever and ever. In reality it’s not. Next year is next year and none of us know exactly how the cards will fall.

Let’s look at some facts:

The Eagles have two very good running backs.
The Eagles will be returning FOUR offensive linemen that were injured in 2012.
The Eagles will be coached by someone who might be smart enough to run the ball.
The Eagles will be drafting very high in every round in April.
Andy Reid will not be having final say in those picks.
Nnamdi Asomugha, Michael Vick, and several other large contracts will be off the books.

Who’s to say they don’t trade DeSean Jackson for picks and replace him with a slight downgrade in Damaris Johnson? Or move Bryce Brown while his value is high? The thing we could never badmouth the Birds about was how they managed their finances, and at this moment they still have options and cap space and solid talent on the roster. This current team on the field is as dead as dead and was doomed from the start based on circumstances that are only now becoming clear. Twenty-twelve was a final disgusting go-for-broke attempt and Andy’s last hurrah. ¬†What’s important is how vastly improved this team’s remaining corpse, if given the right coach and a decent draft, can end up being in 2013.

Next year’s result may very well exceed media expectations.

PS – Change ‘em back to the Kelly greens, Jeff.