The Phildelphia Eagles are headed to the Super Bowl once again! With the big game coming up this weekend we thought it would be the perfect time to list some of the books and movies about the Eagles and the Super Bowl available with your library card that can help get you in the spirit for Sunday!
Based on a true story, this 2006 movie begins in the Summer of 1976, when then 30-year-old Vince Papale is having a very bad year. Budget cuts have lead to the elimination of his job as a substitute teacher and his wife has asked for a divorce saying that he’ll never amount to anything. When the Philadelphia Eagles’ new coach announces that he will be holding open tryouts, Vince decides to give it a try, and the rest of course, is history.
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Greg Kinnear, and Elizabeth Banks.
Rated PG for sports action and some mild language.
Invincible: My Journey from Fan to NFL Team Captain by Vince Papale with Chad Millman
In 1976, Vince Papale was thirty, a former schoolteacher and part-time bartender, and a season ticket-holder for his beloved Philadelphia Eagles. When he heard that Coach Dick Vermeil was holding open tryouts, he decided to give it a shot. Shocking himself and the coaches, he ran an explosive 40-yard-dash in just 4.5 seconds — a world-class time — and was offered a contract on the spot. When he joined the team, Papale became the oldest non-kicking rookie in NFL history, a fan favorite who played for four years and was named a team captain. Invincible is Vince Papale’s story, and a tie-in to the Disney Pictures film of the same name starring Mark Wahlberg as Papale and Greg Kinnear as Vermeil. But more than just a tie-in, it tells Papale’s story in his own words, covering subjects not included in the film. Like Rudy, Glory Road, and Rookie, it is the true story of an ordinary man who achieves an extraordinary goal.
Philly Special: The Inside Story of How the Philadelphia Eagles Won Their First Super Bowl
Sal Paolantonio of ESPN takes readers inside the improbable 2017 championship season of the Philadelphia Eagles—from training camp to the first Super Bowl title in franchise history. This is the inside story you will get nowhere else—from the team’s storybook start to the nail-biting victory over the New England Patriots in Minneapolis, featuring the “Philly Special,” perhaps the most memorable play in Super Bowl history.
Through exclusive interviews, readers will learn how the Eagles overcame Carson Wentz’s season-ending injury, how the team defied the odds and the critics and how they beat the greatest dynasty in modern pro football. With exclusive inside access, Paolantonio reveals a rare look into the dynamic between head coach Doug Pederson, back-up quarterback and eventual Super Bowl LII MVP Nick Foles, and the many individuals who stepped up and answered the call at the right times.
Paolantonio captures the mood of the team week by week, every step of the way, profiling numerous key players, coaches, and much, much more.
Philadelphia Eagles: Where Have You Gone? by Fran Zimniuch
Philadelphia Eagles: Where Have You Gone? takes an informative stroll down memory lane with the Philadelphia Eagles of yesteryear, helping fans who are wondering where the time has gone. Local icons such as Chuck Bednarik, Tom Brookshier, and Ron Jaworski have remained in the spotlight years after their playing days ended. But this book tells fans about what happened to players like Pete Liske, Leroy Keyes, Super Bill Bradley, and other favorites who have made being an Eagles fan in Philadelphia so much fun.
The book goes beyond the helmet and shoulder pads and takes a look at the human side of these former guardians of the gridiron. From Norm Van Brocklin to Jeff Kemp, Wilbert Montgomery to Cyril Pinder, Jim Skaggs to Guy Morriss, and Don Hultz to Tim Rossovich, the book looks not only at the playing careers of many former Birds, but also at their lives after their playing days ended. Many former players have stayed in the game at some level and enjoyed coaching. Many fans, however, do not know which former Eagles player later became an NFL official, which former defensive standout became a salmon fisherman, which wide receiver became a respected judge, or which player now operates hospital-based centers treating sleep apnea. This reissue of Philadelphia Eagles: Where Have You Gone?, first published in 2004, reveals all this and more, providing fans with a look into the past while also bringing them up-to-date with some of Philadelphia’s greats.
The 50 Greatest Players in Philadelphia Eagles History by Robert W. Cohen
The author ranks, from 1 to 50, the top 50 players in team history.
Quotes from opposing players and former teammates are provided along the way, as are summaries of each player’s greatest season, most memorable performances, and most notable achievements.
Published in 2019.
Finished Business: My Fifty Years of Headlines, Heroes, and Heartaches by Ray Didinger
Ray Didinger opens his lively memoir Finished Business with the Philadelphia Eagles’ upset win in Super Bowl LII. When the Eagles finally hoist the Lombardi Trophy, Didinger does his best to straddle the emotions of a working reporter and a long-suffering Philly fan. His ability to do that is why he has built up such a loyal following.
Didinger began following the Eagles as a kid, hanging out in his grandfather’s bar in Southwest Philadelphia. He spent his summers at the team’s training camp in Hershey. It was there he met his idol, flanker Tommy McDonald. He would later write a play, Tommy and Me, about their friendship and his efforts to see McDonald enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Didinger has been covering the Eagles as a newspaper columnist or TV analyst since 1970. Over the years, he wrote sports for the Philadelphia Bulletin and the Philadelphia Daily News. He later produced Emmy Award–winning documentaries for NFL Films before transitioning to sports talk radio and TV analysis.
In five decades, across multiple media platforms, he has interviewed everyone from Hank Aaron, Wayne Gretzky, Muhammad Ali, Julius Erving, Jack Nicklaus, to Mike Schmidt, as well as writing film scripts for Hollywood stars such as Bruce Willis and Alec Baldwin. He went to the White House with the U.S. Olympic team and even explored the bizarre world of professional wrestling.
His stories, told in his familiar, breezy style, capture his enthusiasm for sports and his affection for the fans who still mourn the pennant that eluded the Phillies in 1964. Didinger has become synonymous with Philadelphia sports, and his memoir is as passionate as an autumn Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.
A Bird’s-Eye View: My Mostly Wonderful, Always Unforgettable Half-Century with the Philadelphia Eagles by Leo Carlin with Paul Domowitch
Day in, day out, Leo Carlin was a constant presence with the Philadelphia Eagles for over five decades. The longtime ticket director and front office mainstay has dedicated most of his life to creating memorable experiences for Eagles fans. He’s played countless roles and has countless stories to tell as a result.
A Bird’s-Eye View is a fascinating, frank, in-the-room look at nearly 60 years of Eagles’ history, spanning five different ownerships, 14 head coaches, so many stars, and, of course, a Super Bowl. From getting his start as a part-timer in 1960-when professional football in Philadelphia ranked a distant third in popularity to baseball and college football-to riding down Broad Street with his fellow Eagles hall of famers in the championship parade, Carlin opens up about the highlights, lowlights, and never ending hijinks that come with the territory.
Birds of Pray: The Story of the Philadelphia Eagles’ Faith, Brotherhood, and Super Bowl Victory by Rob Maaddi
They were the first No. 1 seed in NFL history to enter the playoffs as an underdog. Their star quarterback was out with a season-ending knee injury. Five-time Super Bowl champions the New England Patriots towered over them. But public opinion didn’t matter to the Philadelphia Eagles. They believed in each other. The band of Christian brothers on the team believed in the God of the impossible, and they played for an audience of One.
The most extensive book to explore the Christian faith shared by many of the team’s players, Birds of Pray details the incredible inside story behind the Eagles’ capture of the biggest prize in professional sports: the Vince Lombardi Trophy. Through exclusive interviews with the players, never-before-seen photos, and insider accounts of the miracle season’s most memorable moments, Philly native and Associated Press sportswriter Rob Maaddi reveals a side of the team the world has yet to fully witness.
From an impromptu baptism in the team’s cold tub to weekly Bible studies and pre-game prayers, to the unique friendship between star quarterback Carson Wentz and back-up-then-MVP Nick Foles – the Eagles excel in the unexpected. Birds of Pray follows the deep faith shared among players, the high stakes they faced together, and their relentless reliance on Christ who gives all strength in moments of crisis and celebration alike. The result is a boldly inspiring, entertaining read that will challenge readers to go deeper in their faith, dream bigger, and live with renewed courage for whatever odds life stacks against them.
Flyin’ High to Victory by Ed Robinson
Players such as Carson Wentz, Nick Foles, Nelson Agholor, Alshon Jeffery, Torrey Smith, LeGarrette Blount and Jay Ajayi gave fans something to talk about.
From start to finish, you’ll follow the Eagles through their incredible journey.
The Philadelphia Eagles Playbook: Inside the Huddle for the Greatest Plays in Eagles History by Reuben Frank & Mark Eckel
The X’s and O’s behind the Eagles’ most memorable moments. In a series that explores the logic-defying comebacks and tough losses, the dramatic interceptions, fumbles, game-winning field goals, and touchdowns that shape a fan’s greatest memories of their beloved team, this book does not disappoint as the ultimate collector’s item for Eagles fans.
It chronicles the most famous moments in Eagles football history, including the fourth-and-26 conversion that stunned the Packers in the 2003 playoffs, Eric Allen’s weaving 94-yard dash interception return against the Jets, and what actually happened between Chuck Bednarik and Jim Taylor in the final seconds of the 1960 NFL Championship Game. The descriptions of each play are accompanied with game information and quotes from participants, players, and observers with firsthand accounts.
Super Bowl Blueprints: Hall of Famers Reveal the Keys to Football’s Great Dynasties by Bill Polian & Vic Carucci
In Super Bowl Blueprints, Hall of Fame general manager Bill Polian and veteran football scribe Vic Carucci sit down with the architects of the greatest teams of all time, digging into how these dynastic squads did what they did, with more insight and access than any football book in history.
Polian, the architect of the Super Bowl XLI–champion Indianapolis Colts, provides a rare glimpse inside the locker rooms, coaches’ room, and front offices for the key moments that defined the modern NFL.
Whether Polian is discussing variations of the no-huddle with Jim Kelly and Peyton Manning or the culture of the Steel Curtain with Terry Bradshaw and “Mean” Joe Greene or different versions of Bill Walsh’s West Coast offense with Mike Holmgren and Steve Young, his command of the game mixed with the perceptions of these legends creates a book like no other. Tom Flores, Ron Wolf, and Mike Haynes debate how Al Davis built the iconic Raiders franchise, while Jimmy Johnson, Jerry Jones, Troy Aikman, and more share how tension and football IQ were married to create the unstoppable Cowboys teams of the ’90s.
Super Bowl Blueprints tells the story of championship football—how it’s attained and what it takes—through the voices of Bill Parcells, Marv Levy, Art Rooney II, Charles Haley, Doug Williams, John Mara, Charley Casserly, Joe Theismann, Harry Carson, Tom Moore, Brian Billick, Frank Reich, Dwight Freeney, Joe Gibbs, Tony Dungy, and many more!
When It Was Just a Game: Remembering the First Super Bowl by Harvey Frommer
Written by acclaimed sports author and oral historian Harvey Frommer and with an introduction by pro football Hall of Famer Frank Gifford, When It Was Just a Game tells the fascinating story of the ground-breaking AFL–NFL World Championship Football game played on January 15, 1967: Packers vs. Chiefs. Filled with new insights, containing commentary from the recently discovered unpublished memoir of Kansas City Chiefs coach Hank Stram, and featuring oral history from many who were at the game—media, players, coaches, fans—the book presents back story and front story in the words of those who lived it and saw it go on to become the Super Bowl, the greatest sports attraction the world has ever known. Archival photographs and drawings help bring the event to life.
The Super Bowl: The First Fifty Years of America’s Greatest Game by David Fischer
In 1966, as the champions of the AFL and NFL prepared to play each other for the first time, Kansas City Chiefs–owner Lamar Hunt wrote the following to Commissioner Pete Rozelle: “I have kiddingly called [the championship game] the Super Bowl, which obviously can be improved upon.”
How wrong Hunt was. After the AFL merged with the NFL, “Super Bowl” became the official title of the NFL championship game in the years to come. In celebration of the first fifty Super Bowls, David Fischer traces its evolution from a game that didn’t sell out in 1967 to a worldwide phenomenon with a viewership in the hundreds of millions.
Packed with dozens of arresting full-color illustrations—highlighting game action, memorabilia, and players and coaches—The Super Bowl includes sections on the greatest games, individual performances, and game-changing plays. Fischer explores unique Super Bowl angles as well, including a ranking of “The Best Who Never Won” and “The Best Who Never Lost,” along with perspectives from players and fans. He covers the action, the heroes, the strategy, and the records from half a century of championship football.