Two constants for the Eagles the last two years have been winning and injuries.
The Eagles are 22-10 the last two regular seasons despite losing player after player to injury throughout this stretch.
Every NFL team experiences injuries, but it sure seems like the Eagles in particular the last couple years have been plagued by soft-tissue injuries.
They won a Super Bowl two years ago despite losing so many key players. Last year they went 10-6 and won a playoff game despite the entire secondary — and a few others — ending up in the trainer's room.
Torn ACLs and broken legs are unavoidable. They’re going to happen and no amount of stretching or conditioning is going to change that.
As long as there's an NFL, they'll happen.
With soft-tissue injuries — tendon, muscle and ligament injuries — that’s not always the case.
They can't be prevented, but they can be reduced.
Only two Eagles — Malcolm Jenkins and Jason Kelce — have started and finished all 36 games the Eagles have played the last two years.
That’s kind of shocking, and the Eagles this past offseason set out to find out why.
Head coach Doug Pederson said the Eagles’ medical and training staff spent time this offseason researching soft-tissue injuries and trying to find ways to reduce them.
"With the data that's out there, it's hard to track,” Pederson said Monday. “I think we're getting more and more kind of caught up with the soft-tissue injuries. We've had extensive history with the ACLs and all that kind of stuff, but now the soft-tissue thing has kind of taken over. So we're collecting more data on it.”
Pederson said he's altered the way the strength and conditioning staff prepares the team before practice, and just watching the team’s pre-practice routine so far, there does appear to be more of an emphasis on core exercises that strengthen the area from the hips to the shoulders.
Pederson said he’s given the strength and conditioning guys more time to work with the players, as well.
“We focus a little more on the core,” Pederson said. “We're trying to be proactive with soft tissue, with stretching and core exercises. One of the things I did this spring was give our strength and conditioning a little more time to be a little more proactive in some of this so we could be ahead of the curve and really try to focus on eliminating as many as we can. Obviously, they're going to come up, but we're taking steps to be proactive in it.”
Will this new focus on soft-tissue injuries translate into a healthier team in 2019? We’ll see.
The Eagles are 22-10 the last two years despite an extensive list of injuries both years. Just imagine what a healthy Eagles team could do.
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