Less than eight months removed from tearing his right Achilles tendon in the playoff game in New Orleans, Brandon Brooks knew he was going to be on a pitch count for Sunday's season opener.
Brooks was supposed to play just 30 snaps; he ended up playing over 50 before exiting the game prior to that 19-play drive in the fourth quarter.
He still wanted more.
"I was really getting in Doug's ear and Stout's ear about going back in," Brooks said.
Eventually, the 30-year-old right guard got his wish. He got one more snap - he was back in at right guard as the Eagles lined up in victory formation to run out the final seconds of their 32-27 win at the Linc.
While Brooks was always on pace to play in Week 1 and while his absence on the injury report Friday let us know he was good to go, it doesn't make what he just did any less remarkable. We're talking about a 340-pound offensive lineman playing in an NFL game less than eight months after an Achilles tear … and doing it at a high level.
And he never had a doubt.
"I always knew I was going to be fine, man," Brooks said. "I give credit to the training staff. Them doing their job, they were kind of up in the air as far as letting me play. I appreciate the organization and the trainers having faith in me knowing my body and allowing me to go out there and play."
After Sunday's win, Brooks said he felt fine and could've played the entire game if he wasn't on a pitch count. He expects to play every snap next Sunday night in Atlanta.
Brooks said he felt like he was back to his usual self against the Redskins. That means back to being a two-time Pro Bowl guard. This was the first major injury of Brooks' career and the way he approached his rehab was inspiring.
All that work paid off on Sunday night.
"You get to that fork in the road," Brooks said. "You can either come back how you were or not come back at all. Hearing it was going to be kind of early and things like that, I just knew all the work I put in, that I was going to be fine and ready to go."
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