Andy Reid Hates You

Last week I received a rare negative review of my memoir, LOUD, from a sometimes-listener who said he found me too negative and mean-spirited.

I plead guilty, not only for the 300 pages in the book but also for my 33 years at WIP. When I went into sports, I promised my advisor at Columbia University that I would hold sports figures accountable at all costs. I did so, relentlessly.

What I never could have calculated at the time, 47 years ago, is that I would still be trying to fulfill that vow one full year after I retired.

But what am I supposed to do when the biggest fraud in Philadelphia sports history adds another log to my fire?

The same day that emailer ripped me, it was revealed that Reid – still celebrating his third Super Bowl win thanks to Patrick Mahomes – had blocked the release of the NFL audio that would have filled in the blanks on his blistering confrontation with star KC tight end Travis Kelce.

An audience of 123 million viewers saw clearly that Kelce went nuts on Reid for keeping him out of the game late in the first half. Lip-readers even took a stab at transcribing the profanity-laced tirade Taylor Swift’s boyfriend directed at his overrated coach.

The sideline was wired for sound. The Chiefs won the game. There was no reason for Reid to suppress the tape.

But he did anyway.

Because he doesn’t give a damn about NFL fans. And especially about our fans in Philadelphia.

Reid’s fan-unfriendly decision is nothing new for a man constantly depicted as a self-effacing jokester who is actually a paranoid phony.

If you wanted to get an answer to your questions during Reid’s 14 years as Eagles coach – with zero championships, by the way – good luck. Andy the Robot would show up after every game, win or lose, with the same insulting non-answers. Then he would say how much he loved the fans.

The part that has always frustrated me about this situation is not so much Reid’s anti-fan stance as the positive response to it. Reid remains more popular than any other Eagles coach ever, including Doug Pederson, who actually won a Super Bowl here.

Meanwhile, Reid has always been brilliant at making the most of his opportunities to enhance his fake image. In his 14 years as Eagles coach, he rarely rose above quiet disdain for the local media – for example, his famous comment: “Clean your ears out, Les (Bowen).”

But with the national media, Reid was far different. He still managed to swerve away from any major revelations, but always with a smile and a nod of approval. Reid knows who butters his bread, and it’s not the local guys.

Today, Andy Reid pitches insurance and fast food with the lovable personality he never displayed here. Why? Because Reid knows who pays the bills, and it’s not the local tire dealer.

In the second-to-last column of his brilliant career, Peter King of Pro Football Talk went into detail about how accommodating Reid was to him, both at PFT and at Sports Illustrated before that. King spoke with admiration of Reid’s vivid description of a play he called Corn Dog – a nifty piece of offensive deception that got him three touchdowns in the past two Super Bowls.

Andy Reid has no problem taking fans into the huddle or onto the sideline when it serves him – when it leads to more product endorsements and more national acclaim. When it doesn’t, the best a local media guy can hope for is a Q-Tip to clean out his ears.

If the play shows his brilliance, he’s got no problem describing it in depth for a major national writer. If it’s a dispute on the sideline with one of his own players, forget it. Reid has nothing to gain, so the tape is censored.

There has never been a bigger fraud in Philadelphia sports history than Andy Reid.

I have been saying it for two decades now, with no success in changing even one mind.

But I persist, for reasons not even I can understand.

Was this Blog post another example of my negativity and mean spirit?

Yes, for sure.

I thank you for making it to the end.

At least it’s a lot shorter than my book.


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