Eagles Will Rally Around Reid

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 02: Head coach Andy Reid of the Philadelphia Eagles stands on the sidelines during a preseason game against the New York Jets at Lincoln Financial Field on September 2 2010 in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

Although he may not have been there physically, Andy Reid was very much present on Sunday afternoon.

You could see him in the faces of each and every player as they walked out onto the field. You could see him in Howie Roseman, who was still fighting back tears as he got something from his car hours after the announcement of Garrett Reid's death. You could see him in Michael Vick, who took to the podium after practice a changed man because of Reid.

If there was one thing that was amazingly apparent through all of the sadness on Sunday, it was that the Philadelphia Eagles are Andy Reid. The franchise quarterback may be Vick, the owner may be Jeffery Lurie, but the organization is Andy Reid.

In order to understand the sadness that was felt by everyone involved from this tragedy, you have to understand that.

Andy Reid is the modern day Eagles.

For many of the players on the Eagles, he is the only coach they have ever had. Over his 13 years as Eagles head coach, Reid has seen players come in as rookies, play their careers out, and come back as coaches. He has seen Roseman go from the bottom of the organization to the top. He saw Vick come in as the most hated man in sports to now a changed man that the (majority) of Philadelphia loves. He saw Juan Castillo parked outside of his office in Green Bay and has been with him ever since. He is much more than a coach to this team. He is a father figure, a friend, a mentor. He is everything to this organization.

Which is why on Sunday, everyone in the Eagles organization felt like they lost a son.

It's hard to look at the loss of a human life and figure out how things will change because of it. With everything surrounding the team, it's hard to forget that a young life- one that by all accounts was being turned around- was lost Sunday morning. Regardless of who the father is, that is a tragedy.

And while it feels wrong to think about how Andy Reid losing his son will play out on the football field, it was hard not to as the team practiced.

The players worked hard Sunday afternoon. Vick had perhaps his best day of camp yet, DeSean Jackson ran crisp routes, and despite not hitting, the intensity was there. It was a quiet intensity, but an intensity none the less. The coaches and players practiced with a purpose. Whether that will translate into wins this season is yet to be seen.

But it's clear that this entire organization is going to rally around Reid.

Sometimes certain things or moments define seasons and become a rallying cry for a team. Whether this moment will prove to be that once the season ends is not known, but it had that feeling. It made the entire Eagles family closer right before a season where that is exactly what they needed. Everyone was playing hard for Reid before, knowing that his job was on the line this year.

That will be intensified now, and the team will be better for it.

Follow Eliot Shorr-Parks on Twitter at @EliotShorrParks

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