Dallas Cowboys vs. Philadelphia Eagles, Jan. 8, 2022
The Eagles will have their top four running backs available for Sunday’s Super Wild Card playoff matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Starting running back Miles Sanders (hand) said he will play against the Buccaneers, despite missing the past two games. Sanders said he underwent surgery immediately after the Eagles’ Week 16 win over the Giants in order to be ready for the postseason. Sanders practiced throughout the week and felt good enough to play this weekend. Sanders said that if he didn’t feel like he could play at a high level, he wouldn’t have pushed to play because he knows what’s at stake in the playoffs.
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With Sanders ready to roll, he can be used in a rotation with Boston Scott and Jordan Howard. Scott and Howard have held down the fort with Sanders out of the lineup, and now the entire trio will be able to move in and out of the lineup together. Their availability could allow rookie Kenny Gainwell to see more wide receiver snaps. The Eagles only have four active wideouts, so Gainwell could receive playing time in the slot.
In other injury news, defensive end Josh Sweat (illness, non-COVID related) will be listed as questionable heading into the playoff opener, according to head coach Nick Sirianni. Sweat, the team’s top pass rusher, experienced abdominal pain earlier in the week but returned to the team facility on Friday.
If Sweat can’t play, the Eagles will be light on starter-level talent at defensive end. Derek Barnett and Ryan Kerrigan would probably start, while Tarron Jackson and practice-squad defensive end Cameron Malveaux would fill out the rotation. Rookie lineman Milton Williams and starting defensive tackle Fletcher Cox could kick outside as well.
UPDATE (2:55 p.m ET): Along with Sweat, the Eagles listed starting right guard Nate Herbig as “questionable” for Sunday. If Herbig can’t play, he would probably be replaced in the lineup by either Sua Opeta or Jack Anderson.
The Eagles are expected to elevate tight end Richard Rodgers from the practice squad this weekend. Sirianni noted that Rodgers will replace injured tight end Tyree Jackson (knee) in the lineup.
The Eagles have until 4 p.m. on Saturday to elevate players from the practice squad.
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