With Michael Vick, Mike Kafka, Trent Edwards and Nick Foles already in the fold for the Philadelphia Eagles, it is doubtful that they will be in the market for a backup QB this season. That didn’t stop two-time former Eagles’ QB Jeff Garcia from throwing his name out there.
Jeff Garcia is now 42 and hasn’t thrown a pass in an NFL game since 2008, however, while appearing on WIP’s afternoon show with Anthony Gargano and Glenn Macnow, Garcia said he would love to return to Philadelphia and play again.
There will always be a soft spot I the hearts of Philadelphians for Garcia. In 2006, what looked like a lost season was resurrected by Garcia when he led the team to 5 straight victories to end the season. The Eagles made the playoffs that year and wound up knocking off the New York Giants for a sixth straight victory before being outsted by the New Orleans Saints.
Garcia showed amazing resiliency that year, and played with tremendous pride and heart, converting a city of disappointed fans into a re-energized fan base. Jeff Garcia drew comparisons to Philly’s favorite fictional hero, Rocky Balboa and became the toast of the town.
During his chat on WIP, Garcia said that Philly would be the only place his wife would support him playing, and that “our experience there in Philadelphia was just, for me as a player, one of the best experiences I’ve had.”
Garcia surprisingly enchanted the city by playing hard, showing emotion and being a leader on the field, all things that fans had started to feel the full time QB, Donovan McNabb was incapable of, but play very well to Philly’s blue collar style. At the end of the season, there was a large contingent of fans that wanted Garcia back as the starter. Ultimately, however, Garcia was not re-signed and many fans believed that it was because of Donovan McNabb feeling threatened. It didn’t help the fans’ relationship with the Eagles starter and actually got the ball rolling downhill for McNabb.
Garcia returned briefly in 2009 to backup the Eagles when McNabb went down again. His only play on the field resulted in a turnover.
Garcia alluded to the fact that he would pay Andy Reid to come back and play in Philly. “How much do you want me to pay you Andy so I can come in and get things fired up there. I’d pay to play.”
Again, at 42, the call is unlikely to come, even moreso from the Eagles, but it was just one more reason to remember Garcia fondly. For 6 weeks, he really did hold the heart of this city in his hands.