Eagles Official Web Insider Spits on Cowboys' Star, Blames Love of Birds

↵There are some big rivalries in the NFL, and to Philadelphia Eagles fans, there's none bigger than a week against Dallas. So when the teams play two weeks in a row, one of those games is a blowout in the Cowboys' favor and the next is a playoff game for the Eagles in Dallas, tensions flair pretty high in Philly. ↵

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↵And that's where things get a little confusing. Fans have this rivalry with Dallas. Certainly the players feel the rivalry too, especially in a game like last week's with the stakes being so high. But Eagles employees, like "Insider" Dave Spadaro, should be able to separate their love for the team from being a professional in an NFL environment, right? ↵

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↵Sadly, no. ↵

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↵ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵ ↵
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↵That video was taken from the official website of the Philadelphia Eagles and re-distributed by 1053thefan.com, the website for a Dallas-Fort Worth radio station. And yes, for those who are unable to play it, that was Spadaro – a paid employee of the Eagles media/new-media department – spitting on the Star at midfield of JerryWorld. Twice. ↵

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↵It would be one thing if this was a fan who made the trip down to Big D to watch this favorite team and managed, on a walk-through day, to sneak down to the field and harmlessly desecrate the Cowboys logo. This is something a college kid would do, post on YouTube and be the hero of his dorm floor at Drexel or St. Joe's. This isn't something a member of the visiting franchise, only on the field because he was credentialed to be there, should be proud of, is it? ↵

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↵According to the site PhillySportsCast.com, Spadaro (Spuds as he's known around these parts) told 610 WIP's Howard Eskin – also on the Eagles payroll on game day as the radio sideline guy – “I was just having fun with the rivalry. People are making a big deal of it.” Spadaro also talked with the Inquirer's Jeff McLane (link via The700Level), and said the same thing: ↵

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↵⇥“I did it all in fun and I’ve done it before with other teams in the spirit of the rivalry,” Spadaro said tonight. “It’s something I’ve been asked to do by Eagles fans. If I did something to offend somebody, I regret it.” ↵
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↵I'm sorry if anyone was offended. The non-apology apology. And rather incongruent with the statement Spadaro and the Eagles put out late last night. In part: ↵

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↵⇥As you may have seen, I went too far with my Spudcam video prior to Sunday's game against the Cowboys. Acting alone, and without permission from the Eagles organization, I walked out to the middle of the field at Cowboys Stadium and spit on the Cowboys star, and for that I deeply apologize to the outstanding Cowboys organization and the fine people there, from Jerry Jones to the rest of the team. ↵⇥

↵⇥It was not my intention to insult the Cowboys. It was my intention to enjoy the spirit of a great sports rivalry, and I clearly went over the line and acted unprofessionally. The Cowboys have always been gracious hosts and I appreciate the relationship I have with the friends I have there. ↵⇥

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↵⇥I admit I get carried away with my love of the Philadelphia Eagles, and if this is a crime, I am clearly guilty. Game days are an incredible experience for me. The will to win is unlike anything I have ever felt. The angst and the tightly-knotted stomach and the ups and downs of 60 minutes of Eagles football leave me thoroughly drained -- win or lose -- and I enjoy having the opportunity to communicate that to the many great Eagles fans who follow this team on a (many-times) daily basis. ↵⇥

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↵Let's just remind everyone that this guy isn't the starting middle linebacker. He's their website writer who handles postgame coverage online and does some cute web features. The guy used to be a journalist. But you can't blame the guy. Reading the line 'the will to win is unlike anything I have ever felt' or 'the angst and the tightly-knotted stomach ... leave me thoroughly drained' from a guy who works in the PR office – I almost did a spit take too. ↵

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↵Then there's the subtext of the situation. Spuds is catering to a different breed of Philly sports fan at PhiladelphiaEagles.com. Most of the media in town have little-to-no respect for Spadaro after, several years ago, he signed on to be the official Eagles spin machine. He's often maligned by local sportswriters and sports talk radio hosts. Most fans are savvy enough to, at best, take his homerism with the proper perspective or, usually, avoid it altogether. ↵

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↵But there are still some fans who love the team, love everything about the team, want to be as close to the team as possible and, if given the same credential, would also spit on the star and put a video online bragging about too. To them, Spadaro is a hero: ↵

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↵⇥Dave u r a LEGEND ... you did what any other passionate Eagles fans would do ... the fact your getting punished just shows the spineless disenchanted nature of the organisation ... I have a new found respect for you :D (jbreitenbach 1/7/10 4:27am ET) ↵
↵Spuds is just living every true Eagles fan's dream. The guys in the dorm are gonna be so stoked.↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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