Carson Wentz feels good but big hurdle remains to start Week 1

Carson Wentz feels good but big hurdle remains to start Week 1

As Carson Wentz answered questions about how his practice went Sunday, the first day he was back in full-team 11-on-11 drills since late July, he couldn’t help but channel his inner Ice Cube. 

“I felt good,” Wentz said. “Knee was feeling good. It was a good day.” 

A good day indeed. 

As the Eagles’ franchise quarterback continues to rehab his torn ACL and LCL that he suffered back on Dec. 10, his goal has never changed. He wants to be ready to play in the Week 1 opener on Sept. 6, but it won’t ultimately be his call. He still says it’ll be “close.” 

It seems like Wentz is confident he’ll be ready to go, but the doctors need to clear him for contact. That remains the final hurdle before he can play in a game. 

“I feel good,” Wentz said Monday. “Like I said, I think you guys see me out there. I have really no hesitation in the pocket when guys are around me. I feel really good but it’s going to come down to if they feel confident in contact and when that is. I can’t say yet.”

Wentz said he doesn’t know when the final test to be cleared for contact will come, but he is heavily involved with the doctors and trainers as they execute his rehab plan. They obviously need to listen to his input. 

After Wentz did full-team drills early in training camp, the Eagles backed off him for a few weeks. That was part of the plan but was also likely impacted by the fear of unnecessary risk in an uncontrolled environment. 

That led to a frustrating few weeks.  

“I want to be out there every day,” Wentz said. “I want to be a full participant in every single thing. But that wasn’t totally my call and you just have to be smart in those situations. It was tough, but yeah, getting out there in the full-team drills, I definitely enjoyed it.” 

Wentz said there’s nothing, in particular, he wants to see from himself over the next few weeks. Really, he just wants to get more reps with his teammates, specifically some new faces he’s throwing to. 

Doug Pederson on Sunday said Wentz and Nick Foles will split first-team reps 50-50 as the team starts to prepare both for the season opener on Sept. 6. 

Eventually, even if it doesn’t happen for Week 1, Wentz will be cleared for contact and will play in an NFL game. It won’t happen this preseason, but whenever it comes, Week 1, 2, whatever, he’s going to need to trust that knee. 

He doesn’t think there will be a mental hurdle to overcome. 

“I don’t think so,” he said. “I feel good out there. Obviously, I haven’t been hit yet, but out there in the team drills, guys flying all around, all those things, I don’t feel like I have any mental hesitation. And I’m personally not worried about it.” 

Wentz has come a long way since Dec. 10 and the subsequent surgery. He called the rehab a “grueling process.” 

“Just from a rehab standpoint, when you’re in the building almost every day of the week, all offseason, you really don’t get any break,” Wentz said. “And then just the physical limitations early on and overcoming that step by step, it’s been a grueling process but I’m thankful for the progress that I have made.” 

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Will Eagles try to bring back Mike Wallace from IR this year?

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Will Eagles try to bring back Mike Wallace from IR this year?

The Eagles officially signed Jordan Matthews on Wednesday morning and in order to make room for him, they placed Mike Wallace on Injured Reserve. 

Wallace, 32, fractured his fibula on Sunday, apparently needed surgery and his time with the Eagles could end rather unceremoniously without a catch. 

If Wallace can recover quickly, though, the Eagles will have the option to bring him back later in the season. Head coach Doug Pederson on Wednesday didn’t rule out a possible return for Wallace this year. 

Injured Reserve
Mike Wallace
Mack Hollins
Richard Rodgers 

NFL teams used to have to designate players for return when they placed them on Injured Reserve, but that’s not the case anymore. The Eagles will be allowed to bring back two players who were on the 53-man roster back from IR later this season. That means they might have some decisions to make later this season between those three players. 

If Wallace gets healthy enough to return this season, the Eagles would probably be interested in bringing him back. Even after adding Jordan Matthews, they still don’t have a speed option on the outside. The earliest Wallace could come back is Week 11 vs. the Saints

The interesting thing here is that the clock starts from when the player is placed on IR. They can’t be activated until eight weeks have passed and they can’t start practicing until six weeks have passed. That means Hollins and Rodgers will be eligible for return before Wallace. At that time, if Hollins and Rodgers are healthy, the team will need to weigh its options and try to figure out if it’s worth waiting for Wallace. 

The Eagles also have Gannon Sinclair, Toby Weathersby, Elie Bouka and Paul Worrilow on their IR, but none of them were on the 53-man roster and aren’t eligible to return. 

Non-football Injury
Tim Jernigan

Physically Unable to Perform
Chris Maragos 

The NFI and PUP have their differences, but in this regard, they’re the same. Jernigan and Maragos are out for the first six weeks of the season. The earliest possible return is Week 7. 

After six games, there’s a six-week window to either get the player back to practice or send him to IR. Once the player starts practicing, there’s another three-week window to either add the player to the roster or send him to IR. 

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Eagles lose Joe Walker, add Asantay Brown to their practice squad

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Eagles lose Joe Walker, add Asantay Brown to their practice squad

The Eagles on Wednesday signed rookie linebacker Asantay Brown to their practice squad to replace Joe Walker. 

Walker was signed to the Cardinals’ 53-man roster and is already off to Arizona. His locker was cleared out yesterday. Walker was a seventh-round pick out of Oregon in 2016 but missed his rookie season after an ACL tear. He played minimally last year and ended the season on IR with a neck injury. 

Walker originally made the Eagles’ 53-man roster this year but was released in favor of D.J. Alexander, whom the Eagles claimed off of waivers. Walker was then put on the practice squad. 

Brown is a rookie from Western Michigan. He was with the Eagles this summer but missed a lot of time with an injury. 

After calling up running back Josh Adams to the active roster earlier in the week, the Eagles’ practice squad has nine players, one shy of the maximum. 

Here’s an updated look at the Eagles’ practice squad: 

LB Asantay Brown

WR Reggie Davis 

DT Treyvon Hester

WR Braxton Miller

WR Dorren Miller

DE Joe Ostman

CB Chandon Sullivan

S Tre Sullivan

C Jon Toth 

The most notable names on this list are Miller and Tre Sullivan. Sullivan made the Eagles’ initial roster and played in the opener, but was then cut to create space for Deiondre’ Hall, who was picked up in a trade with the Bears. 

Miller is the former Ohio State QB and third-round pick. But even with the Eagles in what seems to be a dire situation at receiver, they haven’t called him up. Doug Pederson earlier this week explained that Miller hasn’t had a chance to learn the offense yet. During the week, practice squad players run the scout team and mimic opposing offenses for the Eagles’ defense.

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