Defensive tackle Mike Patterson is a former first-round pick who doesn't get a lot of fanfare. Head coach Andy Reid said earlier this season that Patterson was playing at a Pro Bowl level, but that didn't result in the 6-1, 300-pound Patterson's name being listed on the NFC Pro Bowl roster last Tuesday night.
In his sixth season out of USC, Patterson has 57 tackles, 2.0 sacks and a fumble recovery this year. Since 2007, the Eagles run defense ranks fifth in the league and this season alone has held six Pro Bowl running backs to 100 yards or fewer thanks in large part to Patterson's play.
But one fact that is never mentioned regarding Patterson is his consecutive games played streak. Patterson has never missed a game in his career. He has played in 95 straight games, which is the most among all active defensive tackles. Patterson is battling a knee injury, but was a full participant in practice this week and is listed as probable for today's game against Dallas.
However, the Eagles are locked into the No. 3 seed for the playoffs and will host a wild card game next weekend (date, time, opponent TBD). What if Andy Reid decides to rest a majority of the starters today? Could Patterson's streak come to an end?
"Is it 95 straight?" Patterson said on Friday when asked about the streak.
Patterson is more focused on the team's goal of winning the Super Bowl than about his streak. Patterson was the first draft pick of the Eagles following the Super Bowl appearance in the 2004 season. The Eagles got back to the NFC Championship game once in Patterson's tenure, but they are still looking for their first Lombardi Trophy.
"It's something good. It shows longevity, but it's nothing outstanding," Patterson said. "It shows that they can count on me when I'm called upon."
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 12:00 p.m., January 2