Former Patriots safety and current NBC studio analyst Rodney Harrison certainly had a role the last time the Eagles went to the Super Bowl. Maybe, that's why he offered his support to the team on Tuesday declaring that Philadelphia will represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.
"I actually picked Philly to go to the Super Bowl. I don't know how Dallas - with the pressure of them not winning a playoff game in the last decade, all the hype and pressure surrounding them - in back-to-back weeks, can beat Philadelphia, especially with Andy Reid, an experienced coach," Harrison said on a conference call to promote NBC's coverage of Saturday's game. "Donovan (McNabb) has played in the playoffs and played in a Super Bowl and I flat out think Andy Reid is a better coach. I'm picking Philly to win this game and go all the way to the Super Bowl."
When Harrison's Patriots played McNabb and the Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX, Harrison had two interceptions as the Eagles fell 24-21.
The Eagles' road to the Super Bowl was a little bit easier in 2004. Not only did the Eagles have a first-round bye, they had homefield advantage. If the Eagles want to make a return this year, they have to win three straight road games beginning with this Saturday's battle in Dallas. While the Cowboys may have the hot hand after winning last week 24-0, they will have to hear all week that they haven't won a game since 1996.
"You really have to put it out of your mind. People are going to talk about it all week," said fellow NBC studio analyst Tony Dungy. "They're going to drill it in your head. What Wade (Phillips) has to do, and I'm sure he is doing it, is just remind everybody it's like every other game. You go out there and produce and do what you're supposed to do and follow your leads and do what you practiced. That's how you win the game. You don't have to do anything spectacular, nothing out of the ordinary. But that's easier said than done because you are going to hear it all the way."
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 8:15 p.m., January 5