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Philly’s real-life marching Saints | Morning Newsletter

And, an injury to defensive mainstay Brandon Graham piles on Eagles’ loss

Good morning, everyone. Thanks for spending some time on this beautiful Monday across the region to check out what’s inside The Inquirer Morning Newsletter.

If you’re like me, you’re still wondering how the Eagles came up small against San Francisco in yesterday’s home opener — well, we have all the analysis and opinions from our team of Eagles beat writers. But first, I have this heartwarming story of another Philly football team dedicating its season to a beloved coach who died from COVID-19. That, plus a roundup of last night’s winners and losers at the 73rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles.

OK, let’s get into it, and again, thanks for reading.

— Kerith Gabriel (@sprtswtr, morningnewsletter@inquirer.com)

In West Fairmount, there’s a collective of young boys clad in football gear preparing for a season of peewee football without the man who made it all possible. As the Parkside Saints mourn the loss of their coach and team president, Clifford Smith, who died from complications of COVID-19 in March, it’s astonishing that the team is preparing to play this season.

For some, the loss of Smith, who was a father figure to so many of these boys, was just too much to bear, with many leaving for other teams. On top of that, the team and the league were in dire financial straits, with many not knowing whether it would survive.

But with a new coach and a purpose, Parkside prepares for a new season, meaning that many players still have an avenue to not become a statistic in these streets, something their endearing head coach fought to ensure wouldn’t happen to any kid who played for him.

Reporter Ellie Rushing shares this remarkable story.

The Eagles looked really, really good yesterday — until they didn’t. A dominant defensive performance in the first two quarters against the San Francisco 49ers amounted to just three points at the half for Philadelphia, as head coach Nick Sirianni and quarterback Jalen Hurts couldn’t replicate their Week 1 dominance against the Falcons and suffered a 17-11 loss in the home opener at Lincoln Financial Field.

Adding injury to insult was the news that stalwart defensive end Brandon Graham suffered an Achilles tendon injury that will sideline him for the remainder of the season. Graham confirmed as much in a tweet he sent out immediately after the game, saying he’s “working to be great for 2022.”

Eagles beat reporter EJ Smith came through with an instant analysis of the game in addition to this piece to consider that if you take away a handful of costly penalties, the Eagles’ defense was actually pretty dominant against a pretty good Niners offense.

Reopening resources

  1. Here’s our latest list of restaurants, large performance venues, universities, and gyms in the Philly region where you need to show proof of vaccination.

  2. Here’s where to get a COVID-19 test in the Philadelphia region.

  3. Should you laminate your vaccination card? What if you lose it? Here are the dos and don’ts.

  4. Here’s what you need to know about medical exemptions.

  5. It could be time to upgrade your face gear. Which masks work best?

What you need to know today

  1. Police have issued arrest warrants for two Philadelphia men wanted in connection with the death of Isidro Cortes, the 28-year-old soccer fan who was beaten to death outside of Pat’s King of Steaks in South Philadelphia on Thursday.

  2. The rollout of COVID-19 boosters begins this week for the immunocompromised and for people who have gone at least eight months since their last shot. Here’s what you need to know about boosters and whether it’s your time to get one.

  3. The 73rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards didn’t disappoint but locals missed out on a host of honors.

  4. Democrats in the Pennsylvania Senate have elected to sue their Republican counterparts in order to block a GOP subpoena to examine election records. Democrats are claiming this attempt would trample on the separation of powers and also violate election law protecting voter information.

  5. Wednesday is the official start of fall. But it won’t feel like it as fall has typically remained warm for much longer than it should, affecting foliage color changes, bird migration patterns, and ticks.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Yo, who knew pooches loved people watching, too?

Tag your Instagram posts with #OurPhilly, and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature here and give you a shout-out.

That’s interesting

💖 A couple who lost their son to suicide earlier this year have decided to donate all of his belongings to incoming Afghan refugees.

⚾ Bryce Harper says he doesn’t care about his stats, which is crazy, considering that his numbers just might make him NL MVP.

👕 Experts say the billion-dollar business of thrifting used clothes is expected to grow more than double what it was in 2020 by 2025. Who knows? We just might slow down climate change through recycled fabrics just yet.

🧹 The Shop-Vac factory in Williamsport, Pa. will remain after a Chinese billionaire bought the foundering company and has committed to keeping it 100% American-made.

Opinions

“It feels like far too many Americans — including the ones making the decisions — don’t want to hear these personal stories, or to understand the reasons why someone would flee the only country they’d ever known to wander across a hostile Latin America for years, and why the long shot of asylum in America — where many of them know friends or family living comfortable lives on the other side of a man-made line — is worth a do-or-die gamble,” Inquirer national columnist Will Bunch writes about the scores of Haitians who have fled the ravaged island and have crossed the border seeking asylum in droves.

  1. A pair of experts from CHOP suggest that fear has taken the driver’s seat when it comes to the delay in vaccinating children against COVID-19.

  2. Despite calls for reform and accountability, it looks as if the new contract for Philly’s police department does little to enable that effort, writes Inquirer columnist Helen Ubinas.

What we’re reading

  1. Billy Penn has an awesome story on Philly native James LeGette, one of two male cheerleaders on the Eagles this season. LeGette, who worked as a performer at Sesame Place, says he tried out for the team because it was time to “break some barriers.” Respect.

  2. Philly Mag takes a look at the region’s labor shortage and suggests that it actually might be a good thing in the long run to boost the economy. If you think about it, this might be one of the rare occasions when workers demand that “you gotta incentivize me,” and companies are asking them to name their price.

Photo of the Day

It’s the last weekend of summer, but Eagles fans proved that football was made for fall.

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