A lot has happened since Eagles last won at home

A lot has happened since Eagles last won at home

October 18, 2013, 10:45 am
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The Eagles haven't won a regular-season game at Lincoln Financial Field in over a year and have lost the most home games in the NFL over that last four years. (AP)

It’s been so long since the last time the Eagles lost eight straight home games, not only does their stadium no longer exist, most of the teams they lost to don’t exist either.

The Boston Redskins, Pittsburgh Pirates, Brooklyn Dodgers and Cleveland Rams are among the teams that beat the Eagles in 1936 at Municipal Stadium in South Philly, which eventually became JFK Stadium and is now the site of the Wells Fargo Center.

The Eagles’ last eight-game losing streak started 77 years ago with a 26-3 loss to the Redskins, then based in Boston, and ended a year later, in September 1937, with a riveting 6-6 tie against the Chicago Cardinals. The Eagles didn’t actually win a home game until 1938, when they beat the Giants, 14-10.

The Giants are also the last team the Eagles beat at the Linc, and that was 383 days ago.

“The fourth game of last season was the last time we won at home?” center Jason Kelce asked. “That’s a long time for the fans not seeing a win in person.”

On Sunday, the Eagles will try to end the NFL’s longest current home losing streak when they face the Cowboys in a 1 p.m. game at the Linc.

Both teams are 3-3 and the winner will move into sole possession of first place in the NFC East.

A loss would make the Eagles the 24th team in NFL history to lose nine straight home games, the first since the Rams lost 14 straight from 2008 through 2010.

“Be nice to hear some people cheering us at home for once,” linebacker DeMeco Ryans said with a laugh. “I don’t know if I’ve heard that yet. Not for a long time.”

Since the Eagles’ last home win:

• About 142 million babies have been born worldwide.

• About 35.6 million commercial airline flights have taken off and landed.

• Wawa has sold about 73.5 million hoagies.

• Peyton Manning has thrown 49 touchdown passes.

• The 76ers have made 518 three-pointers.

It’s been a while.

“It’s always important to win at home,” Kelce said. “Mainly because it’s hard to win on the road, and generally speaking, teams that don’t win at home are unsuccessful teams, because the home stadium is where you have your big advantage. If you win half your home games, you’re usually going to be a playoff team.

“I don’t know what the rhyme or reason is for why we’ve struggled at home over the course of the last year, but it needs to get corrected.”

The Eagles won their first two home games last year before losing their next six -- by an average of 15.3 points. Their 2-6 home record was their worst since 1983.

Overall, the Eagles were outscored by 64 points at home, the fifth-highest margin ever. Their 4-12 overall record cost Andy Reid his job and led to the hiring of Chip Kelly.

This year, the Eagles are 3-1 on the road, matching Reid’s Chiefs for the most road wins in the NFL. But they’re 0-2 at home, with losses to the Chargers and Chiefs in the span of five days in mid-September.

Only the Jaguars, at 1-9, have a worse home record since the start of 2012 than the Eagles.

“Last year, we just weren’t a good team home or away, so that’s a big part of it,” Kelce said. “This year we’ve played two games at home and we’ve been in both of them, and they definitely could have gone the other way if we took care of mistakes, turnovers. Two games we probably should have won.

“Why haven’t we won at home? It’s certainly not the fan base. The fans are incredible in Philadelphia. It just comes down to we just haven’t gotten it done.”

During the 10-year period from 2000 through 2009, the Eagles went 52-28 at home, the eighth-best home record in the league during that span.

Since then, they’re just 9-17 at the Linc.

No NFL team has fewer home wins over the last four years.

The Eagles need to go 4-2 or better the rest of the season at the Linc to avoid a third straight losing record at home. Last time they endured three straight losing seasons at home was 1963 through 1965, when they played at Franklin Field.

“Things just haven’t gone in our favor at home,” Ryans said. “We’ve been in some tight ballgames, especially this year, but things just haven’t gone our way.

“But I feel like we’re in a good stretch right now. We’re playing well as a team, and if we continue to play like that we’ll be fine.

“Everybody is coming together, everybody is playing team ball, it’s fitting together good. If we keep that up, wherever we play -- on the road or at home -- it will turn. We’ll win some games.”

None of the Eagles' next four home opponents -- the Cowboys (3-3), Giants (0-6), Redskins (1-4) and Cards (3-4) -- has a winning record. They’re a combined 7-17.

So you would think this streak will end before the Eagles approach the NFL record of 14 consecutive home losses, set by the 1988 and 1989 Cowboys at Texas Stadium and matched by the 2008-2010 Rams at the Edward Jones Dome.

“It’s important to win at home, but we’re not going into this game thinking, ‘Hey, it’s a home game, we have to win it,’” Kelce said. “We’re going into it preparing just like we prepare for every other game.

“But the bottom line is we need to win games at home. Not just for our fans but for ourselves as a team. You always want to be able to have home-field advantage. It’s something we need to get back to.”

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