BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said he expects ailing defensive tackle Tim Jernigan to play in Super Bowl LII Sunday.
Jernigan missed practice back in Philadelphia last Friday and has missed both practices in Minnesota since the Eagles arrived here. The Eagles are scheduled to practice again on Friday.
“Because of the position and he’s one of our veteran guys, I do feel comfortable that he’ll be ready,” Pederson told NFL-designated pool reporter Kimberley A. Martin of the Washington Post.
Jernigan was not present during the hour-long media availability earlier in the day. Cornerback Ronald Darby was also missing and is also sick, but he was a full participant at practice.
The pool report said the Eagles plan to keep Jernigan “as hydrated as possible.”
Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox (calf), running back Jay Ajayi (ankle) and linebacker Dannell Ellerbe were also full participants.
According to the pool report, defensive end Vinny Curry left practice briefly and was examined by trainers after getting several fingers on his left hand caught in a teammate’s facemask.
“He’s fine,” Pederson said. “He shook it off. He’s good.”
The Eagles practiced indoors Thursday at the Gibson-Nagurski Complex on the campus of the University of Minnesota, about 12 miles from their hotel in Bloomington.
“Had a heck of a practice today,” Pederson said. “Guys were flying around. Definitely picked it up. We had three days off before we got on the field [Wednesday], so this is what typically we would see in practice.”
The Eagles worked on short yardage, goal line and third down during the one-hour, 45-minute practice, according to the pool report.
According to the pool report, quarterback Nick Foles “was in a groove, firing off intermediate passes and deep balls downfield with confidence and ease.”
Foles, Carson Wentz’s backup most of the year, will start at quarterback for the Eagles in Super Bowl LII Sunday against the Patriots.
“Nick was really sharp again,” Pederson said. “Real sharp. He was accurate with his passes, smart in the run game.
“And Nate just seems to sort of always impress. Every day he comes out here, he’s ready to work. I know it’s service team stuff, but he makes our defense work.”
Pederson also singled out cornerbacks Jalen Mills and Darby.
“They really focused in on their assignments,” Pederson said. “They’ve got a tough task with the Patriots, some of these small, quicker receivers. But they both had really good days today.”
Mike Holmgren, Pederson’s coach with the Packers from 1996 through 1998, attended practice. The Packers won Super Bowl XXXI after the 1996 season with Pederson backing up Brett Favre. Favre is scheduled to speak to the Eagles Saturday morning (see story).
“It’s fun to have him out there,” Pederson said.