The Philadelphia Eagles moved training camp to their home stadium and practice facility, the first time in 70 years that they will stage preseason in the city.
The move ends the team’s 17-year run of preparing for the National Football League season at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
The Eagles became the 21st NFL franchise to move training camp back to their own facility, the team said on its website.
The team will hold practices both at Lincoln Financial Field and the NovaCare Complex, its training facility near the stadium in South Philadelphia.
“The interaction with our fans during the training-camp period remains a huge priority,” team President Don Smolenski said in a statement. “As such, we are currently planning to utilize the opportunities available to us at Lincoln Financial Field to have a number of open practices (which will be free) available to all of our fans.”
The Eagles’ final year at Lehigh was marked by the drug-overdose death of Garrett Reid, a son of then-coach Andy Reid, in a university dorm room. Andy Reid was fired after the team went 4-12 last season and was succeeded by Chip Kelly.
The Eagles last held training camp in Philadelphia in 1943 at St. Joseph’s University. They’ve been at Lehigh since 1996, while other locations include West Chester University (1980-95), Widener University (1973-79), Albright College (1968-72) and Hershey, Pennsylvania (1951-67).