So far we have jumped all over the map with our what if series. We’ve been in the 80’s and through the 2007 season. This week we are hoping in the time machine and jumping back to the 1960’s. Specifically the 1968 season and most notably the 1969 draft. Back then teams played a 14 game season. The Eagles went 2-12 that year and didn’t win a game until mid November against the Detroit Lions. No one was complaining. With 1 win the Eagles would still have a shot at the number 1 pick. The key here is “1” win. The Eagles beat the New Orleans Saints a few weeks later in a meaningless game to finish with 2 wins.
What if they didn’t beat the Saints? Why is that such a big deal? It just so happens the number one pick that year was none other than The Juice, O.J. Simpson. The Eagles still took a running back with the 3rd pick. They selected 3rd because the Atlanta Falcons also finished with the the same record. Because of the tie there was a coin toss, a toss which of course they won and were granted the 2nd pick. The Eagles still selected a RB, Leroy Keyes from Purdue. To make things worse the Steelers picked 4th and took a guy named Joe Greene. I’m sure you’ve heard of him. The Bills got their man and the Steelers got a cornerstone HOF player. We got Leroy Keyes.
Imagine this city rallying behind a player of O.J.’s caliber. He would have been a perfect fit, the Brentwood Hello’s aside. O.J. was a tough runner. He refused to be tackled. He was the perfect Philadelphia Eagle. If there’s not enough salt on the wound there was a rumor floating around that if the Eagles in deed landed O.J. Simpson Vince Lombardi was going to come out of retirement and be the coach. Neither happened and well the Eagles were awful in the early and mid 70’s until Dick Vermeil came along. If only we didn’t win 2 games.
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Source: Bleeding Green Nation
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