Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - When the post-mortem is finally performed
on the Andy Reid era in Philadelphia, you'll be able to trace his demise back
to Jan. 30, 2007.
That's the day Garrett Reid, high on heroin, raced through a stop light in
suburban Philadelphia, crashing into another car and seriously injuring the
driver. Reid admitted to police at the scene he had used heroin and they also
found drugs and paraphernalia in his Jeep.
On the same day, Garrett younger brother, Britt, got into a road-rage argument
and pointed a handgun at a driver. After arriving at the scene of his
sibling's crash, police questioned Brit about the earlier incident and
eventually commandeered his vehicle before finding drugs and a shotgun in
The box score read a Remington shotgun, a magazine containing twelve 45
caliber bullets, two boxes of shotgun shells, eight OxyContin pills, cocaine
and pot in an SUV registered to Andy and his wife Tammy for Britt. Meanwhile,
Garrett was high on heroin, had pills, a BB gun, and a scale commonly used for
dealing drugs in his SUV.
Garrett Reid was eventually charged with 14 misdemeanors, including assault
and driving under the influence of a controlled substance while his younger
brother faced a litany of gun and drug offenses.
By Feb. 12 coach Reid announced he would be taking a leave of absence from the
Eagles to deal with "family matters."
In November, smack dab in middle of the Birds' season, Montgomery County, Pa.
Court Judge Steven T. O'Neill sentenced Garrett to two to 23 months in jail,
and Britt to eight to 23 months.
Garrett Reid told the judge he had been struggling with drugs since the age of
18, and offered, "I'm at the point in my life where I have already made the
decision that I don't want to die doing drugs."
O'Neill, probably overstepping his bounds, responded by calling the Reid
residence a "drug emporium" and said the family was "in crisis."
Bret Easton Ellis couldn't have penned a more compelling work on privilege
gone wrong and he certainly couldn't have foreshadowed the future any defter.
Later Garrett Reid was charged with attempting to smuggle 89 prescription
pills into the Montgomery County jail and was eventually sent to Graterford
Prison after he tested positive again after returning from an approved
In the ensuing months, Andy Reid lost some power in the Eagles' organization,
although slowly gained it back, winning or at least surviving a power
struggle with former team president Joe Banner. His often consistent and
prudent decision-making, however, turned south and never returned.
Things turned tragic this past August when Garrett Reid's addiction finally
caught up to him at age 29 in a dorm room at Eagles' training camp.
In an effort to keep his son close, Garrett was brought on as a volunteer
strength and conditioning coach with the Eagles. Just another disastrous
decision by his father.
Vials of steroids and enough syringes to raise serious concerns about
whether he was providing performance-enhancers to others were found in
Garret's room, a fact rumored for months but finally confirmed on Monday.
"As you all know, my son Garrett battled addiction for many years," Andy Reid
said. "While there were some victories along the way, it ultimately was a
battle that he lost and that cost him his life. Our family feels the pain of
that loss every day.
"Today's report saddens me greatly, but only confirms the troubles Garrett
encountered in the final years of his life. As parents, we were encouraged by
his apparent progress but, like many addicts, he was able to conceal the signs
Fair enough but what about the decision to let a known addict and drug dealer,
who just happens to be into weightlifting, around players in a game which is
constantly trying to keep performance-enhancers at arm's length?
"I am confident that my son's decisions did not affect our football team in
any way," the coach said.
I'm not and neither is Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie, who is finally starting to
realize he has given Andy Reid far too much rope over the years.
"The news today on Garrett Reid's possession of steroids is disappointing,"
Lurie said. "It's clear the conduct in which he apparently engaged runs
counter to the values and principles mandated for everyone associated with our
To be fair Andy's son was in possession of things like Testosterone-Propionate
and Boldenone Undecylenate, steroids Lyle Alzado may have used in the 1970s,
not today's high-tech performance enhancers which seemingly always leave the
testers a step behind the users.
That doesn't mean the NFL won't have a bull's-eye on the Birds' operation
now, something Lurie has already tried to get in front of.
"We have spoken with the league office and have pledged our full cooperation
with their requests should there be any," Lurie said. "While we remained
saddened by the tragic end of a young man's life and know how hard this must
be for the entire Reid family, we are extremely confident that Garrett's
actions were unknown to those around him and did not involve our football
"The NFL has a rigorous drug testing program for its players," Lurie
continued. "It is a matter of record that none of our players has tested
positive for any of the steroids mentioned in the district attorney's report."
Andy Reid has two games left in his 14-year Philadelphia tenure, one which
should have been lauded. Instead he's left enduring stains both on and off the
football field, and his final days will be spent apologizing to the league,
his team and its fan base.
Time's yours Andy.
"I cannot apologize enough for any adverse appearances that my son's actions
may have for an organization and a community that has been nothing but
supportive of our family," a contrite Reid offered.
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THE GAMES (All Times Eastern)
Atlanta (12-2) at Detroit (4-10), Saturday, 8:30 p.m.
LINE: Falcons By 4
THE SKINNY: The 12-2 Falcons can clinch home-field advantage in the NFC
playoffs with win while Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson resumes his pursuit of
Jerry's Rice single-season record for receiving yards. "Megatron" has 1,667
yards receiving this season, putting Rice's record of 1,848 yards well within
reach with two games to go.
PREDICTION: Falcons 28, Lions 20
Minnesota (8-6) at Houston (12-2), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Texans by 7 1/2
THE SKINNY: The Texans, who have already clinched the AFC South, can secure
home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs with a win against a Vikings
team still in the middle of the NFC playoff picture with an 8-6 record.
The Texans have won seven of their past eight games, including last week's
29-17 win over Indianapolis to clinch the AFC South. Defensive Player of the
Year candidate J.J. Watt had three sacks against the Colts and is tied for the
NFL lead with San Francisco's Aldon Smith with 19 1/2, just three shy of
Michael Strahan's single-season record of 22 1/2 in 2001.
Minnesota, meanwhile, has a serious MVP candidate in running back Adrian
Peterson, who tops the NFL with 1,812 rushing yards. Peterson, who has rushed
for 100 yards in a franchise-record eight consecutive games, has 1,313 yards
during that span, the most by a player in NFL history over any eight-game
stretch. Last week, he rushed for 212 yards and a touchdown in the Vikings'
36-22 win at St. Louis. With two games to go, Peterson needs 294 yards to
break Eric Dickerson's single-season rushing record of 2,105 set in 1984.
"The record would be great, but the most important thing is to get a win in
Houston," Said Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier. "The fact that Adrian feels
that way will permeate through the rest of the team. He wants to really
concentrate on winning this game more so than the record. Our players are
pulling for him without question, but I think every one of our guys knows the
importance of winning this game."
PREDICTION: Texans 27, Vikings 17
Cincinnati (8-6) at Pittsburgh (8-6), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Steelers by 4
THE SKINNY: Both the Bengals and Steelers are vying for a playoff spot and are
also still alive in the AFC North division race behind 9-5 Baltimore.
Cincinnati has won five of six overall and at 8-6 can secure a playoff spot
with a win while the Steelers will have to win out.
"We have a lot of leadership and a lot of veteran guys who have been in this
situation before," said Pittsburgh wide receiver Mike Wallace. "I know we'll
be fine. I know we have the guys to do it. I know exactly how guys are going
to come to prepare this week. My teammates, I know these guys. We've been
through a lot. It's just going to make it even sweeter when we make this run."
PREDICTION: Steelers 21, Bengals 17
Oakland (4-10) at Carolina (5-9), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Panthers by 8 1/2
THE SKINNY: It hasn't been a great year for Carolina or Cam Newton but the
second-year signal-caller has picked it up recently, passing for 10 touchdowns
and no interceptions with a 109.8 passer rating in his past five games. Newton
also currently has 152 passing attempts without an INT, the longest current
streak in NFL. For Oakland, QB Carson Palmer needs just 13 passing yards to
join Rich Gannon as the only QBs in Raiders history to reach 4,000 in a
PREDICTION: Panthers 27, Raiders 14
New Orleans (6-8) at Dallas (8-6), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Cowboys by 3
THE SKINNY: Dallas controls its own destiny as far as the NFC East title goes
as long as they beat the Saints and finish the season with a win at
Washington. New Orleans, meanwhile, still has faint postseason hopes, which
will likely be dashed whether they win or lose this weekend.
PREDICTION: Saints 24, Cowboys 23
Tennessee (5-9) at Green Bay (10-4), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Packers by 13
THE SKINNY: Fresh off clinching their second straight NFC North crown, the
Packers continue their pursuit for a first round bye against the Titans.
Green Bay star quarterback Aaron Rodgers has won 24 of his past 26 starts at
Lambeau Field and has 64 TDs versus just 17 INTs and a 110.0 rating in those
games. Tennessee, however, has won three straight over the Pack.
PREDICTION: Packers 30, Titans 10
New England (10-4) at Jacksonville (2-12), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Patriots by 14 1/2
THE SKINNY: Cover your head if you're the Jags. The high-powered Patriots have
never lost a regular season game against Jacksonville and are coming off an
uncharacteristic home December loss to San Francisco. New England QB Tom Brady
is 3-0 with seven TDs and no picks during his career against the Jaguars. The
2-12 Jags counter with Chad Henne, who passed for a career-best 416 yards in
last game against the Pats.
PREDICTION: Patriots 34. Jaguars 10
Indianapolis (9-5) at Kansas City Chiefs (2-12), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Colts by 6 1/2
THE SKINNY: Dreams of a late run at the AFC South title were dashed in Houston
last week but the Colts can rebound and clinch a postseason berth with a win
against 2-12 Kansas City. The Colts can also become just the fourth team in
NFL history to win 10 or more games following a season in which they won two
or fewer. The key to that turnaround has been rookie QB Andrew Luck, who needs
just 74 passing yards to surpass Cam Newton (4,051) for most by a rookie in
PREDICTION: Colts 24, Chiefs 14
Buffalo (5-9) at Miami (6-8), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Dolphins by 4 1/2
THE SKINNY: Dolphins rookie QB Ryan Tannehill hopes to build on a career-best
123.2 passer rating in a win over the Jags last week, while Buffalo saw
dynamic running back C.J. Spiller, who averages an NFL-best 6.5 yards per
carry, pass 1,000 rushing yards for the first time in his career in a loss
versus the Seahawks.
PREDICTION: Dolphins 20, Bills 17
San Diego (5-9) at NY Jets (6-8), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Jets by 2 1/2
THE SKINNY: The Jets will have a new starting quarterback for Sunday's game
and it won't be Tim Tebow. The team announced on Tuesday that second-year pro
Greg McElroy will get the nod against the Chargers in place of the struggling
Mark Sanchez, who committed five turnovers in Monday's 14-10 loss at
Tennessee, a setback which officially eliminated New York from playoff
contention. San Diego, meanwhile, is likely watching the death throws of the
Norv Turner regime.
PREDICTION: Chargers 17, Jets 10
Washington (8-6) at Philadelphia (4-10), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Redskins by 5 1/2
THE SKINNY: All eyes will be on dynamic Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin
III this week as playoff-hopeful Washington gets ready to visit Philadelphia.
Griffin suffered a Grade I sprain of the lateral collateral ligament in his
right knee in a win over Baltimore two weeks ago and backup quarterback Kirk
Cousins, also a rookie, came through in a big way against Cleveland last
Sunday. The 'Skins, who are in a three-way tie with Dallas and the New York
Giants in the NFC East, control their own destiny for the division crown. The
Eagles could get a lift with the return of tight end Brent Celek as well as
the possible return of Shady McCoy from concussions.
PREDICTION: Redskins 23, Eagles 20
St. Louis (6-7-1) at Tampa Bay (6-8), Sunday, 1 p.m.
LINE: Bucs by 3
THE SKINNY: The Buccaneers were shut out for the first time since 2009 last
Sunday, getting drubbed in New Orleans 41-0. The Rams, meanwhile, were
victimized by Adrian Peterson last week but Sam Bradford was able to throw for
a career-high 377 yards and matched a career-best with 3 TDs against the
PREDICTION: Bucs 27, Rams 21
Cleveland (5-9) at Denver (11-3), Sunday, 4:05 p.m.
LINE: Broncos by 13
THE SKINNY: The Broncos have won an NFL-best nine straight and have also won
nine consecutive against the Browns. Denver can also clinch a first round bye
this week with a win coupled with a Patriots loss at Jacksonville. MVP
candidate Peyton Manning has thrown 16 TDs versus two interception with a
109.0 passer rating at home this season.
PREDICTION: Broncos 33, Browns 17
Chicago (8-6) at Arizona (5-9), Sunday, 4:25 p.m.
LINE: Bears by 5 1/2
THE SKINNY: After starting the season 7-1 the Bears have won just one of their
past six and face a must-win situation against an Arizona team which snapped
an ugly nine-game skid against Detroit last Sunday behind Beanie Wells' three
PREDICTION: Bears 17, Cardinals 16
NY Giants (8-6) at Baltimore (9-5), Sunday, 4:25 p.m.
LINE: Giants by 2 1/2
THE SKINNY: The Ravens are already in the postseason and the Giants hope to
join them. Baltimore has lost three in a row after a 9-2 start, but the Ravens
clinched a playoff spot last week and can win the AFC North with a victory
this week. The defending Super Bowl champions will assure themselves a
postseason spot with wins in their final two games.
"If we win two games, we're going to be in the playoffs," says Giants head
coach Tom Coughlin. "That's what we have to focus on. Our team knows the
circumstances very well. It is a playoff situation for us. We now have to win
to have the opportunity to go to the playoffs. We've responded to that in the
past. We're going to have to respond to that again."
PREDICTION: Giants 24, Ravens 17
San Francisco (10-3-1) at Seattle (9-5), Sunday, 8:20 p.m.
LINE: Pick 'Em
THE SKINNY: The top two teams in the NFC West will be in the spotlight on
Sunday night when the Seahawks host the 49ers to close out Week 16. San
Francisco has already clinched a playoff berth and can secure the division for
the second consecutive season with a win. Seattle, who has not lost at home
this season, enters with a 9-5 record and can still catch the Niners in the
"The sky's the limit for this team," said Seattle Quarterback Russell Wilson.
"You have to play one game at a time. We're doing that right now and guys are
making tremendous plays out there. I'm blessed to be a Seahawk so it's a
pretty great situation for me."
PREDICTION: Seahawks 24, 49ers 20
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