March 4, 2015

The Philly Fifty, #34: Harold Carmichael, Eagles

For the complete list and explanation of criteria and scoring, check out the Philly Fifty page

Longevity – 5

Carmichael played 13 years and 180 games for the Eagles. The only players to play in more are David Akers (188) and Brian Dawkins (183).

Peak – 3

His best season was probably 1973 when he led the league in receptions and yards. He was often a very good player, but not really one you would categorize as elite.

Popularity – 3

Very well known, and relatively popular among Eagles’ fans.

Team Success – 3

Being on the team for so long, Carmichael obviously experienced both the good and the bad. They were a below-average 83-101-1 during his time there, but did make four straight playoff appearances from 1978-1981 which included the Birds first trip to the Super Bowl in 1980.

Awards – 3

Made 4 Pro-Bowls and was 1st team NFL in 1973, 2nd team NFL in 1979 and 1980 and 2nd team all-Conf in 1974, 1977, 1978. Also won the Walter Payton Man of the Year in 1980.

Stats – 4

Far and away the leader in the 3 main receiving categories in Eagles history. 589 catches (Pete Retzlaff 2nd with 452), 8,978 yards (Retzlaff, 7,412) and 79 TD (Tommy McDonald, 66). As mentioned above, he is 3rd in games played.

Historical Standing – 2

A borderline HOF candidate. From 1971-1983, no WR had more catches or TD’s. Only HOFer Charlie Joiner had more yards. His best comparison on Pro-Football-Reference is HOFer John Stallworth.

Excitement – 4

There is always something to be said about physical freaks being “exciting” just by walking out onto the field like a LeBron James or a Yao Ming. A part of that was certainly true with the 6’8” Carmichael. Because of his height, he scored a lot of TD’s (13.4% of his catches were TDs, by comparison, 9.7% of DeSean Jackson’s catches have been TDs in his career) and was also a very physical blocker.

Total: 27

For the complete list and explanation of criteria and scoring, check out the Philly Fifty page

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  1. joof says:

    wonder how he stacks up against Quick….interesting the Eagles had those 2 playing at about the same era

    • Pete says:

      One thing I meant to write but forgot is that Carmichael’s raw numbers would have been far more impressive than they already are if he hadn’t played in a very run-focused era.

    • tk76 says:

      The only overlapped 2 seasons.  The team had a nice run transitioning from one to the other and from Jaws to Randal.  Sort of like the Eagles have been for most of my memory- good, entertaining but not quite great.  Same can be saif for many of their stars.

  2. jjg says:

    6’8″ Harold, the ladder peak of Roman Gabriel’s “Fire High Gang” of receivers (also included 6’4″ TE Charle Young, 6’3″ WR Don Zimmerman) was a great one … killed opponents in “red zone” before the term existed.  Fine pair of hands, strong blocker; wasn’t speedy but could get ya extra yards after catch with cutbacks, toughness, determination.  Played in a tougher ’10-yd. chuck’-rule era as opposed to today’s arena football environment for receivers.  One of the 1970s best.  Legitimate Hall Of Fame candidate; hope he gets in someday.   

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