My experience working for the Philadelphia Eagles

My experience working for the Philadelphia Eagles

The outside of Lincoln Financial Field. Photo from Matthew Rutherford

Isn’t it every kid’s dream to work the games for their favorite team? It was for me, and my dream has become a reality.

I work for the Philadelphia Eagles on the game day staff for the merchandise department. I’ve done two seasons with the team and plan to continue.

I was talking with my brother one day. He is a sports management major at Drexel, and he told me he had gotten an email saying that the Eagles were looking for college students to work game days. He forwarded me the email, and I applied.

At first, I was put on a waitlist because I had said that I could not make the training day that was on a Wednesday evening. I got an email about a month later about another training day, also on a Wednesday.

The field before a preseason game. Photo from Matthew Rutherford

I emailed the person who had sent me the email and explained how I was really interested but have class on Wednesday evenings, so I couldn’t make the trainings. A couple of days later I received an email from someone in the merchandise department telling me there is a training day on a Saturday for merchandise specifically.

I filled out all the required paperwork and went to training that Saturday. I was then required to work the game the next day that was against the Jets. I was stationed behind section 232, and was the “runner.” The runner’s job was to grab the items from the stand and hand them to the cashier. The Eagles won the game 31-6 so that made it much more fun.

For a 1 p.m. game, I typically have to be in the stadium at 10 a.m. to get everything ready to go before the gates open up to fans. I go to park in the lot right next to the Nova Care Complex and have the choice to take the shuttle provided or walk the mile down Pattison Ave. I typically choose to walk because I love the atmosphere in the parking lots and like to see what is going on in the parking lots pregame.

The field painted special for the Army-Navy Game. Photo from Matthew Rutherford

Once in the stadium, I get to go through the wonderful security experience. We have to follow all the same rules that fans have to follow with bags and all. We are required to work special events held at Lincoln Financial Field, including the annual Army-Navy football game.

The game started at 3 p.m. and we were required to be in the stadium by 9 a.m. because the gates open earlier for the cadets and Donald Trump, president at the time, who were going to be in attendance, so we had to go through Secret Service security.

I went through the metal detector and either my belt or lanyard set it off, so I had to get a pat-down. It was really awkward because the agent was making small talk with me while patting my butt to make sure I didn’t actually have anything dangerous.

Once through security, I report to the in-stadium warehouse, right behind the Pro Shop. There we receive our assignment for the day. From there we go to our assigned stand and set it up. We open the stand by the time that gates open that day. Each stand deals with hundreds of fans per game.

Every employee in the stadium gets a $20 meal voucher, and on our half-hour break, we can go get food. I always like to go down to the Chickie & Pete’s stand to get an order of crab fries and a soda. Once finished, I spent the rest of the break watching the game.

Me meeting Fletcher Cox at the postseason party. Photo from Matthew Rutherford

Once the game is over, we stay open for a little while. After a little while, we close up shop, clean up the stand, count the money in the register and report back to our supervisor to make sure we are good to go. Heading back to the parking lot can either be really fun if the Eagles win or really upsetting when the Eagles lose.

We get a post-season party at the end of the year that comes with some fun perks. We did not get one this year because of COVID-19, but last year I got to meet Pro Bowl defensive lineman Fletcher Cox as well as get an autograph from Super Bowl LII champion running back Corey Clement.

I love working these games and being with the fans. I get paid to go to Eagles games, and it really is a dream come true.