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|Putting together a documentary of a Super Bowl season is an extensive and exhausting project.
Except when it becomes a labor of love.
For dozens of employees at NFL Films Youth Dallas Cowboys Jerseys , the 2017 Philadelphia Eagles season was particularly special. Thus, the DVD that chronicles it and becomes available to the public on Tuesday – PHI-NALLY is how it is dubbed – wasn’t exactly work.
”We are in Mount Royal, New Jersey, which is about 20 minutes from the Linc,” says Todd Schmidt, who produces such enterprises for NFL Films. ”So many of our people are lifelong fans of the Eagles, who have suffered for all those years. And that is something the becomes part of the film; we wanted people out there to understand what some of these people went through during that crazy game and this season.
”I would love for an Arizona Cardinals fan to get the same bang out of this as my 22-year-old son and a lifelong Eagles fan will, and I like to think that the story will do that. This is more than a story of a football season. It’s about why teams and fans don’t quit, and that’s what Philly fans are like. They may get a lot of criticism, but there’s a reason Rocky means so much and showing the heart to never give up means so much.”
NFL Films had the good fortune of being able to place microphones on coach Doug Pederson and quarterback Nick Foles. The exchanges between them not only are insightful football-wise, they provide a window into the aggressiveness that was so critical to not only upending the Patriots in a classic Super Bowl, but in the Eagles putting together such a successful season.
Indeed, Philadelphia’s 41-33 victory in Minneapolis probably made for a much more enchanting story than had the Patriots won. After all, New England taking the NFL title is anything but new, and the Eagles last won it in 1960, when Norm Van Brocklin was the quarterback and Chuck Bednarik was playing linebacker and center.
So Schmidt opted to open the documentary with a shot of Franklin Field on the University of Pennsylvania campus – the site of that 1960 win over Green Bay. And he decided to close the film with the parade witnessed by more than 700,000 ”so you get a clear idea of what this meant to the city of Philadelphia, the people of Philadelphia, and to Eagles fans.”
NFL Films actually makes two 55-minute films annually. The 2017 version of the Patriots’ season ”will not see the light of day,” Schmidt explains. But it also would have had plenty of cachet.
”I think every team has a story,” he says, though how many viewers would be interested in, say, the Browns‘ 0-16 campaign is debatable.
”Had the Patriots won, it would have been a film of dominance; if they had won they would have been the `27 Yankees. It would have been magnificent if they had pulled out that game, two of the most amazing Super Bowls back to back. Tom Brady would go down as the greatest magician ever to walk the earth.
”We are storytellers and we would have made the elements we had work well.”
Still, the elements they had on Philadelphia’s side certainly seem more compelling. A team loses five key players, including late in the schedule the QB who appeared headed to league MVP honors. It’s an underdog in all of its postseason games despite being a top seed. Its history of falling short is monumental.
And then it wins a classic Super Bowl against an NFL dynasty.
”The Eagles story has a lot more historical context Youth Denver Broncos Jerseys , which is red meat to a storyteller,” Schmidt says. ”The more context and unique elements of the story, the better the story. So I loved the Eagles story.”
As did so many of his co-workers.
Antonio Brown was sent home from Steelers practice Friday, but it wasn’t because of the calf injury he’s been nursing for the past four weeks.
Brown was a full practice participant all week, but coach Mike Tomlin said Brown fell ill Friday. So Tomlin kept him away from the team two days prior to the Steelers’ divisional round playoff game Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
On their official injury report released late Friday afternoon, the Steelers listed Brown as questionable to play Sunday.
”I didn’t want him to get any of the guys who weren’t sick, sick,” Tomlin said. ”We’ll bring him back in the building (Saturday) and continue with his game readiness. We don’t have a lot of reservations about him from a physical health standpoint. We do need to get him well from an illness standpoint.”
Brown hasn’t played since he left a Dec. 17 game against the New England Patriots in the second quarter because of a contusion in his lower left leg. He returned to practice Monday and remains in line to appear in his 10th playoff game Sunday at Heinz Field.
Questions swirled surrounding the status of three other Steelers starters, but each of those defensive players on Friday insisted he will play against the Jaguars. Cornerback Artie Burns returned after sustaining a non-contact right knee injury Wednesday, defensive end Stephon Tuitt returned after an elbow injury limited him Wednesday and prevented him from practicing Thursday, and defensive lineman Javon Hargrave (back) came back after taking Thursday off.
Also, Tomlin said backup offensive lineman B.J. Finney (thigh injury sustained in the regular-season finale) was a full participant in practice for the second straight day.
Tomlin said he expects all his injured players to be available Sunday. The Steelers listed none on the ”play status” portion of their injury report, and each of them, separately, expressed they would play.
”I’m feeling good; I did all of my reps today in practice,” Burns said. ”I should be 100 percent (Sunday). I felt good out there. All of my movements were good. I feel like I was able to run with good speed. I just have to keep doing therapy and I’ll be good.”
Burns, like Tuitt, emerged from practice with a sizable wrap on the affected body part. But when asked if he was playing Sunday, Tuitt’s answer was, ”No doubt.”
”It went great today,” Tuitt also said. ”I moved my arm really well, pushed offensive line back. It felt great.”
Hargrave downplayed the significance of suddenly missing a practice three days before a playoff game.
”I just didn’t practice (Thursday), that’s all,” he said.
”I’m good. Ain’t nothing serious, I’m pretty sure,” Hargrave said. ”It really wasn’t too big; I just needed some rest, really. I practiced (Friday) and it was pretty good.”
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