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Photo: Philadelphia Eagles
As the Jimmy Kempskis of Twitter spur over the likelihood of Ceedee Lamb holding up midnight green tonight, it is important to remember one thing: No one knows anything.

Even today, whispers fill the online echo chamber with hints of Burrow to Miami and KJ Hamler climbing into the first round. There is only one person in the world who will know for sure who the Eagles take before the pick is in, and his name is Howie Roseman.

But what if the Eagles weren’t drafting players? What if instead the front office had the unenviable task of assessing a different kind of talent – one of gastronomic proportions?

Today we are asking ourselves, in a fictional draft of Philadelphia food, how would things line up? Will the Broncos trade up for an elite dessert? What restaurant has the most prospects taken in the first round? I sat down with a panel of experts – my aunts Bunsie and Bonnie – to consider these questions and more.


Welcome to the Philadelphia Food Nation 2020 Mock Draft.


Honorable Mentions: Scrapple and Rita’s Gelati

Rita’s

Rita’sisn’t the best water ice in the city

, but it’s too iconic to pass up. Make it a Gelati and you can really confuse your out-of-state friends. Is it ice cream? Is it water ice? Neither? Both? As disorienting as the Phillie Phanatic itself, this dessert is perfect for a Summer night after a day roaming Old City, but lacks the seasonal dexterity to crack the top ten.

Scrapple

Scrapple

is truly the afterthought of American breakfast foods, and with good reason. Sparing you the details of its ingredients, Scrapple is like the sun-bleached Kerry-Edwards sticker on the dented bumper of your single Aunt’s Honda civic you’ll inevitably inherit. It’s ugly, it won’t win any awards, but it’s family and you love it. There remains some controversy as to how folks like their Scrapple – some like it cut thin and fried to a crisp while others take it thick and mushy in the middle. And while “mushy” and “Scrapple” are two words I never again want to see in the same sentence, the two styles are a win-win.


Butterscotch Krimpets — Tastykake
Photo: Tastykake.com

10) The Cleveland Browns select Butterscotch Krimpets

Krimpets

were a standout at Tastykake State, setting school records in nearly every offensive statistic. Krimpets’ teammates fall into Day 3 selections and fail to put up the same starter-caliber numbers. Peanut Butter Kandy Kakes develops severe jealousy of Krimpet’s media attention but is forced into early retirement after countless 1-year journeyman deals.

Krimpets concludes a Hall of Fame career at Dessert Lineman with more All-Pro seasons than any Cleveland Brown in franchise history. A sleeper pick if 10th overall could ever be considered such.

9) The Detroit Lions select Dollar Dog Night at Citizens’ Bank Park

Not a sexy pick, but they aren’t drafting for flavor. Dollar Dog Night (DDN) is a home run, an affordable night with only one shortcoming: lines. DDN is not the fastest prospect, but it can be plugged into any lineup and allow offensive coordinators to scheme however they would like. A beer-heavy tailgate, family night with the kids, a 90th birthday, DDN can do it all.

Photo: Philly Pretzel Factory

8) The Arizona Cardinals select Philly Soft Pretzel Factory Pretzels

Pretzel economics make no sense. They are either one for 75 cents or 600 for a dollar. Either way, a true Philadelphian knows the most convenient hook up for a soft pretzel is outside any stadium. Shirtless men selling knock off Eagles tees and coolers of water are the ambassadors of the Philadelphia Pretzel Factory, representing the best of the pretzel business. Get that Hannover garbage out of here, it’s all about the post-game pretzel on the walk to Septa.

7) The Carolina Panthers select a Wawa Hoagie

This is like the Penn-State-bias of home grown talent. Not even close to the best Hoagie in Philadelphia, Wawa’s outsourced bread and increasingly subpar deli meats and cheeses have dwindled local faith in the otherwise heralded convenience store, but a staple is a staple. Nothing screams “I’m about to go to a Riversharks game on a Wednesday night because it’s Summer and I’m alone” more than a made-to-order $4 Hoagiefest Hoagie. Bonus points if you’re wearing tie dye. Negative points if you prefer Sheetz.

Why you won't eat a Schmitter at a Phillies home game this year ...
Photo: Danya Henninger/Billy Penn

6) The Los Angeles Chargers select a Schmitter

Schmitters are the quiet grandparent of Philly’s sandwich scene, relegated to an old pub in Chestnut Hill. Some fun history, the Schmitter is not, in fact, named after Phillies legend Mike Schmidt, but after the Christian Schmidt Brewing Company. Some chap rolled into McNally’s Tavern a million years ago and ordered what is now THE Schmitter: a (literally) heart stopping pile of cheese, beef, onions, salami, and tomato with a special sauce. Double the meet for an additional $7.50 and you, too, can avoid living to 60! In-stadium Schmitter sales at CBP ceased when the park raised its food quality standards, so you know it’s good.

5) Philadelphia Eagles select a Miller’s Twist soft pretzel after trading with the Miami Dolphins

Truly the Lambourghini of the pretzel world, these bad boys are handmade in-shop, almost to order. If the Packer Ave pretzel salesmen are the proletariat of the pretzel industry, Miller’s is the bougie ruling class.

Each pretzel sits under a heat lamp like a Toy Story character yearning for a home. They pull apart magically. Fun fact: nearly 70% of Shakespeare’s sonnets are actually written about these pretzels.

4) The New York Giants select Chickie’s & Pete’s Crab Fries

Chickie’s and Pete’s Crab Fries, especially bought in-stadium, demand a high value pick like 4th overall, and the Giants make a smart decision (for once) and use a second rounder on some melted cheese. This duo rivals Philly’s interior lineman unit for best in the division.

Chickie’s and Pete’s fries hitting your mouth is like “Soldiers” by Drowning Pool hitting your ears as Brad Lidge walks to the mound in ’08. They taste like the crack in the Liberty Bell. They smell like Rocky’s body odor. They are as perfect as a good two-seamer to David Wright’s dumb head. Sure, they get cold in like five minutes, but that just means you have to eat them in four.

Where to Find The Best Roast Pork Sandwiches in Philadelphia ...
Photo: E. Teel for Visit Philadelphia

3) The Jacksonville Jaguars select Roast Pork after trading with the Detroit Lions

A projected second overall pick falls to third only because it’s so damn bitter. Nevertheless, a true Roast Pork demands broccoli rabe and the sharpest provolone this side of the Schuylkill. DiNic’s or Tony Luke’s will both steer you in the right direction, but it has to be an Amoroso’s roll. I repeat, it HAS to be an Amoroso’s roll. No other will do. There is a man from Philadelphia, according to my Aunts (and food experts) Bunsie and Bonnie, who opened a cheesesteak joint in Arizona and still gets his rolls shipped from Amoroso’s. They are that good.

Termini Brothers Bakery – Reading Terminal Market
Photo: Reading Terminal

2) The Washington Team selects a Cannoli

Internationally recognized Gastronomers Bunsie and Bonnie can attest that not just any cannoli will do. Specifically, Philadelphians must swear by a Termini’s Bakery cannoli. Or Isgro Pastries. But that’s it. If it’s not Termini’s or Isgro’s, it’s not a cannoli. That’s science, folks.

1) The Cincinnati Bengals select a Cheesesteak because who else would they take?

The Barry Sanders of prospects, cheesesteaks remain undefeated. More specifically, a cheesesteak WIT. Wit out is heresy and will be treated as such. Wit out is like drafting Eli Manning in 2004 and expecting him not to be an absolute baby about it. We can discuss the pros and cons of wiz, provolone, or American, but as long as that trifecta remains, the cheesesteak will forever be entrenched on the right side of history. I mean:

http://twitter.com/AngelosApeeetz/status/1233427316304490496?s=20

Avoiding the tribalism of “which joint makes the best cheesesteak,” here’s a place to try out if you haven’t: Angelo’s Pizzeria. They opened in Haddonfield (my hometown) in 2013 before moving to Philly and always make an incredible cheese steak. The owner is a great guy, and the sandwiches are so good even Fletcher Cox would stay loyal to them.

Remember that time John Kerry ordered a cheesesteak with Swiss cheese? I am thoroughly convinced that lost him the 2004 election. That, or the Jay Leno chin. Confused by all the John Kerry hate today? Same!


Whatever happens tonight, everyone should be sure to meet at the NovaCare Center at dawn armed with pitchforks and torches. No one knows who Howie will pick, but in the true spirit of Philly, let us call for his head no matter who we land.
As always, go birds.

Featured Image: R. Kennedy/Visit Philadelphia
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