Report: Reid wanted Aikman here in '02

While catching up on some online reading, I stumbled upon an absolute gem from Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times.

Farmer caught up with Troy Aikman for some perspective on Brett Favre's return to Green Bay last weekend. You know -- the whole bitter return to face your old team angle.

But how would Aikman be able to shed any light on that topic? It's not like he returned from retirement to play with the Eagles or Redskins against the Cowboys.

Well, apparently, he almost did.

Aikman tells Farmer the story of how Andy Reid called him during the 2002 season and tried to lure him out of retirement to play for the Birds after Donovan McNabb went down with an ankle injury.

You remember the stretch. McNabb played with a broken ankle and threw four touchdowns against the Arizona Cardinals, but missed the final six games of the regular season.

Koy Detmer got the start on a Monday night in San Francisco and played out of his mind before getting injured. A.J. Feeley filled in, and the Birds finished the season 12-4. They beat the Falcons in the divisional round and then faced Tampa Bay in the final game at the Vet, and well... let's just get back to Aikman.

The former Cowboys quarterback was already in his current role as an analyst with Fox. At 35, he hadn't played in the NFL since 2000.

"Andy was giving me all the reasons why this would be good, why this would work," Aikman told Farmer. "So I went to bed that night and said, 'I can wake up tomorrow and spend a nice couple of days in Santa Barbara. Or, I can be in frigid Philadelphia getting my brains kicked in,' "

Aikman explained that his decision had nothing to do with the Eagles-Cowboys rivalry and an inability to play in Philadephia. It had more to do with him knowing it was only a temporary situation until McNabb got healthy.

But, wow. What a story. Who knew?

And so that's how we kick off Dallas week. Obviously much more to come on the Eagles-Cowboys matchup on Wednesday.

Note: A reader tells me that this was discussed during the game, but I missed it since I was at the Linc.

Note 2: I see some of you already knew about this. I missed it at the time, perhaps since I wasn't living in Philly then. But my deepest apologies for wasting 45 seconds of your day.