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The Philadelphia Eagles have never employed a head coach better than Andy Reid. Doug Pederson may have led the team to its one and only Super Bowl, but Reid’s 130 wins with the Eagles are 67 more than any other coach in franchise history. The mustached signal-caller also led the team to five of its eight NFC Championship appearances.

Reid isn’t just the winningest coach in Eagles history, though. He’s simply one of the best head coaches to ever patrol the sidelines in the NFL. So, why did the Eagles fire Andy Reid in 2012?

Andy Reid is the winningest coach in Eagles history

Andy Reid looks on during an Eagles game.
Head coach Andy Reid looks on during a game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Redskins | Alex Trautwig/Getty Images

Before Reid took over as the Eagles head coach, Philadelphia didn’t have much success to speak of in the Super Bowl era. Under Joe Kuharich, Jerry Williams, Ed Khayat, Mike McCormack, Dick Vermeil, Marion Campbell, Fred Bruney, Buddy Ryan, Rich Kotite, and Ray Rhodes, the Eagles made just 10 playoff appearances and reached the NFC Championship Game one time from 1967-98.

Philly’s luck quickly changed when Reid came to town in 1999.

After a losing season in his first year at the helm, Reid led the Eagles to five straight playoff appearances, four straight NFC Championship appearances, and a Super Bowl berth in 2004. Philadelphia reached its fifth NFC Championship Game under Reid in 2008, but it went just 1-4 in those contests.

Reid never won a Super Bowl with the Eagles, but he did lead the team to 11 winning seasons and nine postseason appearances in 14 years. No other head coach in franchise history has reached even half of Reid’s 130 wins with the team.

Yet, despite his sustained success in Philly, Reid was fired by the Eagles in 2012.

Why did the Eagles fire Andy Reid?

All good things come to an end, even for some of the most successful coaches in NFL history.

On Dec. 30, 2012, the Eagles fired Reid after 14 seasons with the team. The head coach had just come off his worst year at the helm (4-12), and his consistent success in the previous 13 years wasn’t enough to save his job.

Although Reid led the Eagles to a 130-93-1 regular-season record, five NFC Championship Games, and their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history, he wasn’t able to accomplish the ultimate goal set by owner Jeffrey Lurie. Reid also started to trail off down the stretch of his Eagles tenure. In his last four years at the helm, the head coach missed the playoffs twice and lost in the Wild-Card Round twice.

Reid went 12-20 from the start of the 2011 season to the end of the 2012 season, and because he was never able to win a championship in the years prior, the Eagles decided it was time to go in a different direction.

The move ended up working out for both parties. Reid landed the Chiefs head coaching gig a few weeks later and won his first career Super Bowl in 2019, and the Eagles won their first Super Bowl in 2017 under Doug Pederson. In Super Bowl 57, Reid will face off against his former team with the ultimate bragging rights on the line.


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