Carson Wentz 'happy' with recovery, still eyeing Week 1

Carson Wentz 'happy' with recovery, still eyeing Week 1

Now four months removed from his ACL and LCL tear and subsequent surgery, Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz is pleased with his rehabilitation. 

Wentz, speaking on Tuesday for the first time publicly since Super Bowl week, said he’s begun the “running progression” portion of his rehab and his goal is still to be ready for Week 1 of the 2018 season. He doesn’t think he needs to play in the preseason. 

“I’m feeling good with where I’m at and just trying to stay the course,” Wentz said. “Like I said late last season, it’s such a fluid process, it’s so hard to put a timeframe and a timetable on these things. I wish I knew as well. Things are going well and I’m happy with where I’m at.”

A few weeks ago, Wentz sent out a video on social media of him throwing and adding conditioning to his recovery is obviously a good sign. Wentz’s comments on Tuesday reflect what head coach Doug Pederson said last month, that Pederson was “encouraged” by Wentz’s progress. 

Wentz, 25, still declined to go into specifics about a timetable for his return, but did stress the importance of taking things slowly and not trying to return too quickly. 

“It’s part of it. It’s part of the process,” Wentz said. “If something feels really good, I’m like, 'Let’s do it.’ But you’ve just got to stay the course. You’ve seen the horror stories of people coming back too soon and those things. I can assure you that I’ll be smart about it.”

While Wentz’s athleticism made him an MVP candidate last season, there have been plenty of people who would prefer he change his style of play to preserve his body more. While Wentz said he’ll continue to learn how to protect his body, he’s not going to change his style. He said that emphatically on Tuesday. 

Even if Wentz does return for Week 1, there seems to be a decent chance that he might be limited some in terms of his mobility and would then have to alter his style to become more of a pocket passer. Wentz didn’t entertain that thought on Tuesday afternoon. 

“I guess we’ll see when the time comes,” he said. “I think I’ll be fine.” 

Throughout the last few months, while he hasn’t been able to work on his conditioning, Wentz has been in the weight room, working on his strength by lifting and seated throwing. His upper body is stronger these days. 

The closest Wentz has come to discussing a timetable is by now saying twice that his goal is to be ready for Week 1. Everyone else can play the timetable game, but Wentz tries to avoid it. 

“I really try not to, honestly,” Wentz said. “I just try to take it one day at a time. Some days that’s easier said than done. You look at the big picture at times, but right now I’m not going to rush it, I’m going to be smart, I’m going to do everything I can to get back out there and take it one day at a time.” 

Tim Jernigan reportedly heading back to the AFC in free agency

Tim Jernigan reportedly heading back to the AFC in free agency

Former Eagles defensive tackle Tim Jernigan is reportedly heading back to the AFC after agreeing to a deal with the Houston Texans.  

Jernigan is the fifth starter from the Eagles’ Super Bowl LII-winning team to move on to a new team this offseason, joining Malcolm Jenkins, Ronald Darby, Nelson Agholor and Halapoulivaati Vaitai. 

The Eagles’ moving on from Jernigan isn’t much of a surprise after the moves they’ve already made this offseason. First, they brought back Hassan Ridgeway on a one-year deal, then they got Javon Hargrave on a three-year deal. That made it pretty clear that Jernigan wouldn’t be returning. 

While we don’t know the real terms of Jernigan’s contract, it seems possible that he might factor into the compensatory pick formula. 

Here’s the updated list of Eagles free agents who have found teams so far: 

Jernigan, 27, arrived in Philadelphia in April of 2017 in a trade with the Baltimore Ravens and became a major part of the Super Bowl season. He was a starter next to Fletcher Cox and was playing very well until he suffered an ankle injury. But Jernigan was still able to start 15 games that regular season and all three playoff games. He earned a four-year extension during that season. 

But that’s when things got strange. 

Jernigan suffered a mysterious back/neck injury during the 2018 offseason and never revealed what happened. That forced him to renegotiate his contract and he was able to play just three games (five including playoffs) in 2018. 

Last year, the Eagles brought in Malik Jackson to start ahead of Jernigan but Jackson got hurt in Week 1, which should have opened the door for Jernigan. But then Jernigan hurt his foot in Week 2. Eventually, Jernigan played in 10 games (9 starts) but he hasn’t been at his best since early in that 2017 run. And even though he’s 27, it’s fair to wonder if his best days are behind him. 

Still, the absence of Jernigan will still be felt. He was a popular guy among his teammates and Jim Schwartz once said Jernigan “means something to our spirit.” 

At the end of the 2019 season, it seemed like Jernigan was already preparing himself for his departure and saying goodbye to Philadelphia. 

“At the end of the day, man, as long as my teammates know that I gave everything I had on Sunday, when those lights turned on, I gave y’all everything I had,” he said after the playoff loss to the Seahawks. “I’m at peace with that. 

“However it turns out with me in this free agency thing, I’m at peace with that. As long as y’all boys know I gave y’all everything I had. The city knows I gave them everything I had. It’s always love from here, from me there’s always love.”

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2020 NFL mock draft: Eagles don’t get a receiver in the first round

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In his latest mock draft, Andrew Kulp explores that possibility. He has the top four receivers in the class going in the top 20, which leaves the Eagles to find a new strategy. 

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