Philadelphia Eagles News

As If Ryans Didn't Have Enough Respect

Linebacker DeMeco Ryans suffered a groin injury in the Eagles' Week 5 win over the Rams, and for a large part of the following week his status for #BlackSunday was uncertain.

But when push came to shove Sunday night, Ryans took the field. The veteran linebacker helped quarterback the defense to a 27-0 shutout of the Giants' offense, the team's first shutout in 18 years.

After a week of "treatment, working hard, and getting back to full strength," Ryans said he felt great Sunday.

"I knew I could go out and play, and play well," Ryans said after the game. "I felt good going out in warm-ups, so I knew I was ready to roll."

Despite his assertions, Ryans' teammates knew he was working through a tough injury, and that it couldn't have been easy sledding for the veteran Sunday night.

"He had to push through a lot," linebacker Casey Matthews said. "I had to go up to him after the game and tell him how great of a player he is, how much fun it is to play with him and see someone with that much heart."

After missing the majority of the week's training sessions - never fully participating during the week - there were questions about how Ryans would hold up Sunday. Those questions were answered by his play, and more importantly, his grit.

Ryans racked up three tackles and helped limit the Giants' tight ends to just four catches on 59 Giants snaps.

It wasn't his flashiest game; no sacks, no interceptions. But Ryans had to be on the field Sunday night, and he wasn't going to let anything stand in his way.

"A lot of guys asked me all week if I was going to be able to go," Ryans explained. "I don't think there's necessarily a message that I sent to the guys. I know they were counting on me, so I was happy to be out there with them."

As he's known to do, Ryans gave it his all for his teammates. It paid off in a big way, and it earned him some extra love - not that he was lacking - from his fellow teammates.

"He showed his heart and he showed why he's been in this league forever, and why he's really the leader of our defense," Matthews said. "I take my hat off to him.

"He's probably the best teammate I've ever had."

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