About 200 demonstrators staged a "die-in" Sunday night after the Eagles game, lying silently in the cold street to protest perceived racial injustice by police against African Americans.
The brief event unfolded peacefully after the Eagles' loss to the Seattle Seahawks. Most of the exiting fans streamed by without comment, though a handful cursed at the demonstrators.
One unidentified man shouted, "Shoot them all!" several times but his taunts went unanswered.
At least 50 Philadelphia police officers, some on bicycles, were on hand, positioning themselves between the protesters and the fans. The southeast corner entrance to the Broad Street Line was closed to divert football traffic away from where the were protesters gathered.
No activists or spectators were arrested, officials said.
Protester Rene Denuynck, 56, of Mount Holly, held a sign reading, "This is not the America I want or I accept" as he helped occupy the intersection of Broad Street and Pattison Avenue.
"The question should not be, 'Why am I out here tonight?' " he said. "It should be, 'Why isn't everybody out here?' You need people to take a stand."
The event was organized by a group of clergy and lay people called POWER (Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild).
It was an example of "people of faith [stepping] into the public sphere in powerful ways," according to a POWER statement.
The protesters, bundled up for temperatures just above freezing, lay in the street for four minutes, 30 seconds, symbolizing the four hours and 30 minutes the body of Michael Brown, 18, lay in the street on Aug. 9 in Ferguson, Mo. Brown was killed by police officer Darren Wilson. Months later, a grand jury declined to indict Wilson, sparking protests nationwide.
"It is a blessing for us that we are able to get up," one protester said. "Michael Brown never can."
Protesters around the country have also expressed anger at the lack of an indictment by a grand jury in New York City in the death of another black man, Eric Garner. His death in July, ruled a homicide after he was thrown to a sidewalk and held down by police in an apparent choke hold, was videotaped by a bystander.
Chants of "Hands up, don't shoot" and "Police brutality has got to go" were repeated by the protesters throughout the demonstration.
Terri Burgin, 30, said that just as her 70-year-old mother lived through the civil rights movement of the 1960s, this was her generation's time to take a stand.
"We need to stand up, or in this case lie down, for what is right," Burgin said. "It's time for us as Americans to start listening."
Similar die-ins have been held around the country, including at the University of Pennsylvania Law School last week.
On its website, POWER describes itself as an organization of clergy and lay people from 40 congregations around Philadelphia.
"Tonight may only be symbolic action but we hope it continues with real action," said the Rev. Mark Tyler, pastor at Mother Bethel A.M.E. Church and a POWER member. "It's part of much larger narrative.
"We are here because we recognize that God had created us all the same. . . . Everyone's lives matter," Tyler said.
Chief Inspector Joseph Sullivan of the Police Department's Civil Affairs division called the protest well planned. He said advance notice from the demonstrators had permitted police to set up alternative routes for motorists.
After the event, about 75 chanting demonstrators walked west on Pattison Avenue, escorted by police cars and officers on bicycles. The crowd briefly blocked a parking lot exit, stopping fans from departing.
"We agree with you," one person there said, watching.
"I'm here because I wanted to show solidarity," Fareeda Brewington said. "I heard about the march from my friend and wanted to come out and show my support also."
She said she had been inspired by the "whole groundswell of people coming together" to speak out since the grand jury decision in Ferguson.
Margery Cedano, 21, a journalism major at Temple University, said the demonstration was necessary.
"If you know anything about the history of America, protesting is the only way things are going to change," Cedano said.