Eagles

Eagles Injury Update: Vaitai, Sproles, Mathews, Barwin not practicing

Eagles Injury Update: Vaitai, Sproles, Mathews, Barwin not practicing

As the Eagles got to the practice field Wednesday morning, they were without several key starters.

Right tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai (MCL sprain), Connor Barwin (right knee bruise), Ryan Mathews (MCL Sprain), Leodis McKelvin (concussion) and Darren Sproles (seventh rib fracture) were not practicing, according to head coach Doug Pederson.

Vaitai’s injury is “more significant” than the others and he's week to week, according to Pederson.

When will Vaitai return?

“It’s hard to say,” Pederson said. “It is week to week. He’s feeling better with this MCL sprain. But not sure exactly, I can’t tell you exactly how long it’s going to be, but I know it’s definitely a week to week injury.”

The other injured players have much better shots at playing this weekend, especially with an extra day before the Monday night game.

Pederson said if Mathews is able to play Monday, “he’d probably have to be more of a backup there.”

According to Pederson, Sproles has a much better shot of being healthier by game day than Mathews. Pederson said there’s a possibility the team could call up Byron Marshall from the practice squad.

“Darren is fine,” Pederson said. “We’re just holding him from practice, just to keep the rib from getting sore on him and all that. He doesn’t need to practice. He’s one of those guys. He’ll be fine with a couple days of rest.”

The Eagles’ other injured players — Terrence Brooks (hamstring), Malcolm Jenkins (knee bursitis) and Zach Ertz (hamstring) — were all practicing Wednesday morning.

Despite raising bar in 2017, Philadelphia won't host 2018 NFL draft

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Despite raising bar in 2017, Philadelphia won't host 2018 NFL draft

The City of Philadelphia did an incredible job hosting the 2017 draft.

And it still wasn't enough to keep it. 

The NFL has announced the 2018 draft will be held in the Dallas Cowboys' home, AT&T Stadium. Dallas — or technically Arlington, Texas — will be the third city to host the draft in three years, following Chicago and Philly. 

It has been rumored for months that Jerry Jones had his city as the favorite to host the next draft. Turns out those rumors were right. 

Good luck topping what Philly did in 2017 though. 

“Philadelphia raised the bar by taking the Draft to another level, and this new opportunity in Dallas will enable us to continue the event’s evolution and grow it even further,” commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “We are grateful to the Dallas Cowboys, the cities of Arlington, Dallas, and Frisco, and the Dallas Sports Commission for their leadership in turning this vision into reality.” 

The 2018 draft will begin on April 26. The NFL's release said the draft site will include the field, stands and outdoor plazas. 

According to the NFL, at the 2017 draft, a record 250,000 fans attended the three-day event along the Ben Franklin Parkway. The estimated economic impact for the city was $94.9 million. 

“The Draft was a family-friendly event for Philadelphians and visitors across the country,” Mayor Jim Kenney said. “I thank all of our public and private partners, especially the City employees and first responders, who made this event a success and allowed Philly to shine in the national spotlight once again.”

Aside from the numbers, the draft in Philly was aesthetically pleasing. The television shots from the Parkway were gorgeous and the vibe around the entire event was special. 

Things went so well, NFL Senior Vice President of Events Peter O'Reilly said the draft in Philly was a "resounding success." 

It won't be coming back in 2018, but the next time it does, the city will be ready. 

For Torrey Smith, North Dakota trip revealed critical quality about Carson Wentz

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For Torrey Smith, North Dakota trip revealed critical quality about Carson Wentz

Torrey Smith spent four years with Joe Flacco, who won a Super Bowl in 2012. And he spent two years with Colin Kaepernick, who reached a Super Bowl in 2013.

And he sees those Super Bowl qualities he saw in Flacco and Kaepernick in Carson Wentz.

"I think Carson has that make-up," Smith said. "That's why they picked him here."

Smith was one of the Eagles' receivers that spent some time this offseason with Wentz in Fargo, North Dakota, where Wentz starred at North Dakota State.

And he said after visiting the North Dakota State football complex and spending some time around the Bison program, he understands how Wentz got to be the way he is.

"I'd say one of the biggest things I learned about him just by going to North Dakota is you see how and why he's that way," Smith said. "Obviously, he's like that as an individual, but the way they built their program is the same way.

"There's nothing celebrated about all the championships they won. You see it in their trophy case, but you go in that weight room, there's nothing. It's work time. It's all about getting to the next one. Their success, they're worried about the future, and I feel like he's kind of the same way."

The North Dakota State football program has won 13 national championships in either NCAA Division II or Division I Football Championship Subdivision, including the last five in a row. Wentz was the starting quarterback on the 2014 and 2015 championship teams.

"I remember asking him about that one time: 'You ever talk about the records or anything?'" Smith said. "And he said, 'No, we kind of just go about our work.'"

Wentz is off to a phenomenal start this year for the 5-1 Eagles. He has thrown 13 touchdown passes and just three interceptions and has had a passer rating of at least 90 in each game during the Eagles' four-game winning streak.

Smith was asked after practice Tuesday whether Wentz fits in with those other Super Bowl quarterbacks, and he didn't hesitate to say yes.

"There's nothing that's too big for him," Smith said. "People kind of look at him (differently) because he's young, but his mentality is not a young guy at all."