Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The End of Route 36

Five years ago the thought of an Eagles team without Jon Runyan, Tre Thomas, Brain Dawkins, and Brain Westbrook seemed like a nightmare, but now its a reality. Last year the management got rid of Runyan, Thomas and Dawkins and now this year the Birds say good bye to one of everyones all time favs Route 36.

Sure this one stings, during the last decade the Birds offense has been built around Mc5 and Route 36. Now there is only one of them left. Westbrook was always the professional, no matter the game he always made the biggest plays.

In 2006,Westbrook set a career-high in rushing yards with 1,217, topping 1,000 yards for the first time in his career. He also lead the team with 77 receptions for 699 receiving yards. His eleven total touchdowns (seven rushing and four receiving) were also tops on the Eagles. On January 7, 2007 Westbrook set a career-postseason rushing record, rushing for 141 yards on twenty carries against the New York Giants, including a 49 yard touchdown. The following week against the New Orleans Saints, Westbrook nearly willed the team to another playoff victory, scoring two touchdowns in the game.

After his strong playoff performance, Westbrook picked up right where he left in 2007 and cemented himself as one of the top backs in the league. He had over 100 yards rushing and receiving combined in twelve of the fifteen games that he played. His 1,333 rushing yards were a new career high and his 2,104 yards from scrimmage led the NFL. Westbrook was named to his second Pro Bowl and first All-Pro team, after setting a new franchise record with 90 receptions.

After the concussion issues this year, I kept hoping that Westbrook would say goodbye to the game and allow us to remember him as one of the all time greats that has ever worn the eagles green. Sure it will be weird seeing him in an another uniform next season, but as a birds fan, I will always remember being on Route 36 and traveling it a high rate of speed.

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