It’s Dallas week. In more ways than one.
If all goes well Friday and Saturday, the Eagles will get tight end Dallas Goedert back for their nationally televised game Sunday night against the Cowboys.
Goedert was among five Eagles who’ve been on Injured Reserve whose practice window was opened and has been practicing this week. Goedert hasn’t played since suffering an ankle injury in the first quarter of the Bengals game back in Week 3.
“I'm feeling good, it's been a blast being able to get out there with the team again, just see their faces a little bit more,” Goedert said Wednesday. “When you're on IR, you're out of the building for a while, so it's been good to see those guys. It’s just been a blast to be back.”
Goedert was off to a quick start this year with 12-for-131 through two weeks before getting hurt while catching a pass from Carson Wentz on his sixth snap of the Bengals game at the Linc.
“I caught the ball and I kind of got stood up by a linebacker (Germaine Pratt) and (Josh Bynes) came and … landed on my ankle, and I had a little fracture in my tibia,” Goedert said. “And then I had a high ankle sprain. That was probably one of my worst injuries. I've never really missed a game in my college career. (In the) NFL, I didn't play against Atlanta last year, but that was my only missed game. So this has been my first real injury, you know? Thankfully, it wasn't worse than it was and I'm able to be back out here.”
The Eagles lost Zach Ertz three weeks after Goedert and beat the Giants last week with Richard Rogers, who had a big game, and Jason Croom at tight end.
Goedert is among a group of several Eagles who have a good chance to be activated off IR in time for Sunday night’s game. Miles Sanders, T.J. Edwards, Rudy Ford, Jason Peters and Jalen Reagor also practiced this week.
“We’re still just day by day,” Goedert said. “I got to go out there, ran some routes with Carson (Wednesday), but we're still taking it slow, making sure everything's the way it's supposed to be.”
“Not getting the reps in practice, I've got to make sure I'm ready for whatever happens on Sunday, whether I'm playing or not. So that's kind of been the main thing, just making sure I know what Carson's thinking, what I'm thinking, the different looks that we're going to see, just making sure we're on the same page, so if I do happen to play then we can you know go out there and do some good things.”
Goedert has been the Eagles’ No. 2 tight end since he got here in 2018, but with Ertz facing an extended layoff and an uncertain future he’s the guy for now and possibly moving forward.
Even missing these last five games, he still has the 9th-most catches in the NFL by a tight end since last year began.
Goedert said he still needs to get through Friday’s practice before pronouncing himself ready to go Sunday night.
What does he need to see from himself?
“To be able to sustain a block, sit in there and have someone pushing against me while I'm pushing against him,” he said. “I gotta be able to run good routes. You know, I can go out there at 75 percent and just get covered. I'm just a waste. So just making sure I'm feeling good, I look good. And then it is going to be a decision between us, the coaches and the trainers, whether or not they think I'm good enough in a position to play.”
Just a wild guess: He’ll be in a good enough position to play.