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A prime contender for Catch of the Year and part of a historic rookie season by wide receiver DeVonta Smith (more on that later). In Denver, Smith muscled the ball away from former college teammate and fellow top-10 pick Patrick Surtain II for a 36-yard touchdown. It was one of two scores on the day for Smith, who celebrated his 23rd birthday with the win.
A tip of the cap to Jeff Stoutland
The Eagles set the franchise rushing record (more on that below) with – four starters at right tackle, five at right guard, three at left guard, and two at left tackle (of course, Jason Kelce was the rock in the middle).
Credit the organizational philosophy of building in the trenches for accumulating depth. But credit also goes to the work of Run Game Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach Jeff Stoutland.
"Without Stout, of course, I wouldn't be here," left tackle Jordan Mailata said. "Every day, he's on me and he's urging me to improve myself and push myself. I know it comes from his love for all of us, and I also know that we would do anything for him."
Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro's latest column is an exclusive interview with Stoutland about the 2021 season and much more.
Eagles get everyone back from the Reserve/COVID-19 list
The Eagles made several transactions on Monday, including the activation of 11 players who were on the Reserve/COVID-19 list.
The Eagles signed running back Jason Huntley, who had a stellar performance as a practice squad elevation in the regular-season finale, to the active roster.
"He did a really nice job in the game with a lot of different things, right? Not only kick returns, but also running the football," Head Coach Nick Sirianni said of Huntley on Monday. "You saw how explosive of a player he is."
Three players were placed on Injured Reserve – wide receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, tight end Tyree Jackson, and tackle Brett Toth. Sirianni said on Monday that veteran Richard Rodgers would be elevated from the practice squad to take Jackson's spot.
Sirianni also was "hopeful" that running back Miles Sanders would be able to play after suffering a hand injury late in the regular season.
"We're hopeful for Miles this week. Again, that's why we didn't put him on (Injured Reserve)," Sirianni said. "I think we'll have our full stable of backs and really, really excited about where our backfield is. I think a lot of teams in this league would like the depth that we have at this position."
The latest from Tampa Bay
As the Eagles are "hopeful" for reinforcements at the running back position, the Buccaneers are looking for the same. Head Coach Bruce Arians said on Monday that running back Leonard Fournette was ready to come off Injured Reserve. Fournette led the Bucs with 812 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns. He also chipped in with 69 receptions and 454 receiving yards this season, plus another two touchdowns.
Defensively, Arians also expressed confidence that edge rushers Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul would play Sunday after each player missed the past two games.
A couple of injury situations to watch this week in Tampa Bay – linebacker Lavonte David (foot), cornerback Jamel Dean (hamstring), and wide receiver Cyril Grayson (hamstring).
Arians said that he was "concerned" about Dean after Sunday's regular-season finale against Carolina and didn't express as much optimism about the availability of David and Grayson.
The Eagles prepare to face the defending Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the Wild Card Round this Sunday. As part of our preview, here's a look at the projected starters on offense for both teams.
A look at some of the milestones from the regular season
• The Eagles set several single-season rushing records, including a franchise-best and league-high 2,715 total rushing yards, while tying the mark for most rushing touchdowns in a single season with 25.
Philadelphia rushed for at least 100 yards in each of the final 11 games of the regular season, the longest streak since a 19-game stretch in 2011. The Eagles' average of 159.7 rushing yards per contest ranks as the third highest by an Eagles team since the 1970 merger.
• Center Jason Kelce extended his streak of regular-season starts to 122. It's the longest such streak by any NFL center since Chris Myers started 123 straight from 2007-14. In Eagles history, Kelce's 122 straight starts rank fifth with Jon Runyan's 144 leading the way. Runyan did not miss a single start in his Eagles tenure from 2000-08.
• Wide receiver DeVonta Smith broke the Eagles' rookie receiving record with 916 yards, eclipsing the previous mark held by DeSean Jackson from the 2008 season. Smith also finished with the third-most receptions by a rookie in team history with 64.
• Another rookie standout was Kenny Gainwell, who scored six touchdowns (5 rushing, 1 receiving) to tie for the most by an Eagles rookie running back since 2000.
• Kicker Jake Elliott finished with a franchise-record 90.9 percent field goal percentage (30-of-33). His 134 points were the sixth most in Eagles history. Since Week 8, Elliott made 53 of his last 54 kicks (PATs and FGs). In fact, Elliott connected on all 44 of his PATs in 2021.