Philadelphia Eagles get near-perfect complement for Sanders in Gainwell

Kenny Gainwell (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)
Kenny Gainwell (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images) /

There were questions and theories about the Philadelphia Eagles addressing the running back position in the draft, especially after inking Boston Scott to an exclusive rights contract, signing Adrian Killins Jr. to a two-year deal, and, most recently, reacquiring Jordan Howard. Keep in mind the fact that Jason Huntley and Elijah Holyfield are also on the roster.

There was also the mystery about what the Birds might do at the 150th-overall selection in Round 5. Those roads intersected in Cleveland during the final day of the 2021 NFL Draft. We now have our answers.

Philly turned the card in, and the choice is a good one. Philly landed Kenny Gainwell, a product of the running back factory, better known as Memphis. He now joins the quarterback factory in the City of Brotherly Love.

Here’s everything that Philadelphia Eagles fans need to know about Gainwell.

At five-foot-eleven and 191 pounds, Kenny Gainwell is a stud. His family dealt with more than their fair share of COVID-19 concerns, and he opted out of the 2020 college football season. 2019 was a phenomenal year for him though.

In 14 games, he racked up 1,459 yards on 231 carries. That’s a 6.3 yards-per-carry average for those of you who are interested in that type of thing. He reached the end zone 14 times as a rusher.

Gainwell is also a nice blocker, and he knows how to contribute in the passing game. In 2019, he hauled in 51 receptions for 610 yards, and he reached the end zone three times as a receiver. This is as good a complement as the Philadelphia Eagles could have found for their star tailback, Miles Sanders. Now, 26 can take a couple of plays off.

That’s wonderful news if you’re a Birds fan. Perhaps the best news is as follows.

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Gainwell was seen as a top-five prospect by most draft pundits. Only Najee Harris, Travis Etienne, and Javonte Williams rank higher. Here’s something else. The Philadelphia Eagles landed him in Round 5. Ladies and gentlemen, by definition, that is the textbook definition of a ‘steal’.