ATLANTA — Howie Roseman wasn’t the only uncomfortable Eagles employee during the Chip Kelly head-coaching era.
Fifteen years after his iconic career at wide receiver for the franchise ended, Harold Carmichael became Philadelphia’s director of player and community relations in 1998. Carmichael was well-regarded around the league for his efforts in assisting current Eagles handle their off-field lives while also regularly representing the club at public appearances.
All of that started to change when Kelly became Eagles head coach in 2013.
Carmichael was transitioned the following year to a lesser position entitled “fan engagement liaison.”
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Carmichael quit the role in April 2015. Eight months later, Kelly was fired.
“They moved me away from the players when Chip Kelly came in,” Carmichael told co-host Gil Brandt and me Saturday on SiriusXM NFL Radio from the 2018 Black College Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony. “They wanted their people in there.
“My office was situated where the players had to pass every day. They said, ‘Well, we’re going to put him upstairs and our people in (Carmichael’s office).'”
Roseman, too, was marginalized during the Kelly era from his prior duties managing personnel decisions until being given a second chance in 2016. Roseman took full advantage by working with new head coach Doug Pederson to craft a roster that won Super Bowl 52.
Roseman’s efforts have impressed Carmichael, who retired in 1983 as Philadelphia’s all-time receiving leader.
“Howie bounced back and then up,” Carmichael said. “He just really got this team going, putting together not only a great playing team but a great praying team. The guys there I have so much respect for on and off the field.”
Carmichael, 68, is no longer a full-time Eagles employee but says he’s at team headquarters “almost every day still trying to help out doing some things.”
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Carmichael’s induction into the Black College Football Hall of Fame stemming from his days at Southern University were considered so important to the Eagles that a video crew was dispatched to Atlanta chronicling the weekend for the team’s website.
“I’ve been walking on air,” Carmichael said.
Conversely, Carmichael experienced first-hand the disappointment of losing to Oakland in Super Bowl 15 as a member of the 1980s Eagles. That made Philadelphia’s championship win over New England last Sunday in Minneapolis even sweeter — especially because Carmichael was there to see the franchise capture its first Lombardi Trophy.
“A lot of people said, ‘Boy, I wish we could win this Super Bowl before we die,'” said a chuckling Carmichael, who has lived in the Philadelphia era since his paying days.
“I thought about that with a lot of people in the area.”
Kelly wasn’t one of them.