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Washington rolls to NFC East title

SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 04:  Armonty Bryant #95 of the Cleveland Browns reacts during the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on October 4, 2015 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

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SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 04: Armonty Bryant #95 of the Cleveland Browns reacts during the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on October 4, 2015 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

PHILADELPHIA — Kirk Cousins passed for 365 yards and four touchdowns as Washington clinched its first NFC East title since 1999 with a 38-24 victory over the Eagles on Saturday night.

Washington won its fourth in five games to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2012. Its win eliminated the Eagles and Giants from the postseason race.

Cousins has been the key to the team's resurgence. After throwing six touchdowns and eight interceptions in his first six games, he has 20 touchdowns and three interceptions in his past nine.

Washington pulled ahead 30-17 with 3:22 left in the third quarter when Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford had the ball knocked away from him, and safety DeAngelo Hall ran it back 17 yards for a touchdown. Cousins' 13-yard TD pass to Pierre Garcon capped a 13-play, 82-yard drive to make it 38-17 with 8:55 left in the game.

The first half ended on a bizarre note, when Cousins wiped a potential three points off the board when he took a knee seconds before halftime while in field-goal range.

Cousins snapped the ball from the Eagles 6 with six seconds left. When a fade throw to Garcon appeared to be covered, Cousins kneeled rather than spike the ball to stop the clock.

Spence out for year

TAMPA — The Bucs placed defensive tackle Akeem Spence on injured reserve with an ankle injury and promoted running back Mike James from the practice squad. Spence, who missed the first five games of the season with a back injury, finishes with 11 tackles in eight games, including seven starts. The Bucs had signed Da'Quan Bowers last week for depth after Spence was injured. James, 24, hasn't played in a game this season; he was inactive for the first three, then cut and signed to the practice squad. He rushed for 295 yards as a rookie in 2013 but had just 37 yards on 19 carries last year.

CHRISTMAS ARREST: Browns linebacker Armonty Bryant, who has had legal problems in the past, was arrested Christmas morning with practice squad safety De'Ante "Pop" Saunders after they were stopped on a Cleveland area highway. Bryant was arrested in connection with possession of Adderall because he couldn't provide a prescription for the drug, which is on the NFL's list of banned substances, according to an Ohio State Patrol report. Bryant, 25, who has 5½ sacks while making 14 starts in his third season with Cleveland, did not travel with the team for today's game in Kansas City. Saunders, 23, starred at DeLand High and played two seasons at Florida before transferring to Division I-AA Tennessee State.

MANNING'S PROGRESS: Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, who has not played since Nov. 15 because of a tear in his left plantar fascia, finished what coach Gary Kubiak called a "really good week'' of work with a morning throwing session.

EGO BOOST: Eagles rookie receiver and former Berkeley Prep standout Nelson Agholor didn't have a catch last week while being covered by star Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson, which Agholor took as a compliment. "It's actually a tribute to have a guy like Patrick Peterson following me around the whole game," Atholor told philly.com. "It tells you the guy respects your game and he's going to come ready to go."

COWBOYS: Receiver Dez Bryant could be done for the season thanks to foot and ankle issues. Cornerback Morris Claiborne, who has been slowed by a hamstring injury, also was ruled out for today's game.

PACKERS: Cornerback Sam Shields will miss his second straight game because of a concussion.

TEXANS: Quarterback Brian Hoyer is still in the NFL concussion protocol as he recovers from a Dec. 13 injury and will not play today. Brandon Weeden will start, becoming the team's fourth starter this season.

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.

Washington rolls to NFC East title 12/26/15 [Last modified: Sunday, December 27, 2015 12:03am]
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