Eagles have guys with Louisiana ties worth cheering in NFL’s final four
The Philadelphia Eagles square off against the Minnesota Vikings (say it with me, Saints fans…UGH), while the New England Patriots host the upstart Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL’s conference title games.
As an observing football fan, who do you want to win? Can’t just watch the game, can you? You have to be pulling for someone.
It might be easy to hook your wagon onto the Jags with New Orleans’ own Leonard Fournette. I also know that many of you will just pull for anyone except the Patriots.
On the other side of the bracket, Minnesota may not have many fans here. After the Vikings ripped the hearts out of Saints fans and stomped on them, many have sworn off the rest of the postseason football in 2018.
I know what you’re thinking: “I guess I’ll just watch a quarter and see how it goes.” Can’t do it that way though. You’re either on board or not when it comes to Championship Sunday.
So if you’re searching for a reason to pull for someone, think about the Eagles, the squad that has more players with Louisiana ties than many other teams in the NFL. Case in point…
Eagles punter Donnie Jones prepped at Catholic-Baton Rouge before playing for the LSU Tigers from 2000 to 2003. In fact, he connected on an all time school record 86 yard boot in the Bluegrass Miracle game against Kentucky in 2002.
Defensive back Jalen Mills out of LSU was drafted by Eagles in seventh round in the 2016 draft.
The Saints’ top draft pick in 2010, cornerback CB Patrick Robinson, has finally hit his stride as a pro in Philly.
Malcolm Jenkins, the Saints’ top pick in 2009 draft, roaming the secondary here until 2013. He was part of Super Bowl team in ’09. Jenkins has been better with the Eagles, making two Pro Bowls since he left New Orleans.
Dannell Ellerbe was a linebacker with Saints the previous two seasons.
For those who aren’t familiar with Eagles head coach Doug Peterson, he was born in Bellingham, Washington but played his college football at Northeast Louisiana (now know as ULM). The three-year starter tossed for 6,304 yards and 33 touchdowns under head coaches Pat Collins and Dave Roberts. He preceded NFL standout Stan Humphries at quarterback in Monroe.
In one game during Peterson’s college days, he was 46 of 71 passing for 619 passing yards against Stephen F. Austin in 1989. His 71 passes are most in a single game in school history.
Peterson played 14 seasons in NFL mainly as backup after signing as an undrafted free agent with the Miami Dolphins in 1991.
Serving as head coach at Calvary Baptist in Shreveport and compiling a 33-7 mark in his four seasons there, Peterson made it to the top job in his profession. Talk about your overachiever. In 2016, he was hired to replace Chip Kelly for the Eagles, and NFL.com ranked him as the worst hire as a head coach in the league that year. Guess that ranking was a tad off base.
As the chant goes in Philadelphia, it may be time for locals to root for the E-A-G-L-E-S…Eagles!
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Born and raised in the New Orleans area, Rene Nadeau has been involved in sports ever since his earliest memories. Rene played basketball, wrestled, ran track, and was an All-District running back in football at John F. Kennedy High School. He went on to be a member of the LSU football program, developing a passion for the game in even…