Broad Street Birdy Finds Hope Among Eagles' 2013 Ashes

Posted: January 07, 2014

BROAD STREET Birdy's hopes for another Eagles cardiac win were dashed in the heartbreaking final minutes of the Birds' 26-24 playoff loss to New Orleans, but defibrillated last night by Plymouth Meeting attorney Jon Ostroff.

STOMACHING DEFEAT: Ostroff, who lifts up his jersey at Flyers games and does naked-belly dances against the glass during warmups to attract flying pucks from enemy players, is so hopeful about the Eagles' future that he remained fully clothed and cool during the season-ending defeat.

"I'm bummed they lost, obviously," he told Birdy, "but before our game began, I watched Andy Reid's Kansas City Chiefs lose. Same old Reid stuff. His clock management was as bad as ever. His team looked tired. In his final years here, the glass always seemed half empty."

That's when Ostroff had a Chiefs/Eagles epiphany. "Both teams lost playoff games," he said, "but with Chip Kelly, I felt that if the clock had two more minutes on it, he'd find a way to get the ball in the end zone and win. I never had that feeling with Reid.

"Waiting till next year never felt this exciting," Ostroff said. "Our Eagles are young and fit and fast. We were exhausting defenses. I've never seen the Eagles do that before.

"I think Kelly is going to change the game. No huddle. Going for it on fourth down. He blows the cliches away. This guy is not just different. He's good. The Eagles scared the hell out of teams."

Ostroff cited his family's experience in a New Orleans restaurant bar when fans came pouring in after their Saints beat the Bucs, and were watching the Eagles/Cowboys game that decided the Saints' playoff opponent.

"Those fans were cheering for the Cowboys because they did not want to play the Eagles," Ostroff said. "We were the only people wearing green, singing the Eagles' fight song, and the management was trying to figure out a way to get rid of us. Yeah, we were loud."

TONY'S HEARTBROKEN: South Philly Tony, a/k/a Antony Collucci, moved to Texas years ago to work in the oil business but left his heart here, where it was broken by the Eagles as he watched the game at a Houston bar with fellow Philly refugees.

"When that game-winning field goal went through the uprights, I felt like I had just been kicked in the nuts," Collucci said. "It hit me harder as the night went on and I can see myself being unpleasant to be around for months."

He recited a familiar heartbreak history. "The Flyers' loss to the Blackhawks," he said, "the Phillies' postseason losses to the Yankees, Giants, Cardinals; the Eagles' postseason losses to the Panthers, Bucs, Patriots, Cardinals, Packers were hard to take. But this one was the hardest.

"I think it comes from me having no respect for Saints fans who were whining and belly-aching about the weather in Philadelphia all week. Ya, ya, ya, shut up!"

And yet, South Philly Tony is hopeful about the Eagles' future.

"If we focus on defense in the draft, I think we can be a Super Bowl contender next year," he said. "I want a mean, nasty, chip-on-their shoulder defense like Seattle has. A Buddy Ryan-type D.

"Or a Jim Johnson defense. J.J. covered up Andy Reid's deficiencies all those years. We would never have made that playoff run without him."

Although he's high on the future, South Philly Tony said, "I feel like staying in bed and locking myself in my room for three or four months.

"I won't. But I won't watch any more football because I don't care what happens. I plan to be out again by Thursday night to watch the Flyers on TV."

On Twitter: @DanGeringer

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