Despite his arrest Tuesday morning, Eagles receiver Josh Huff practiced Wednesday and is expected to play against the Giants in North Jersey on Sunday, head coach Doug Pederson said.
Pederson also added that until the Eagles learn more about the incident, the team will not punish Huff.
“Until I find out exactly the severity of it and what’s going to happen down the road, right now, nothing,” Pederson said. “We’ll take it one day at a time.”
Apparently the police report outlining the arrest isn’t enough for Pederson. What more information does he need?
“I want to see exactly what happened, maybe talk to some people and find out,” Pederson said. “It’s outside of the building, obviously, and a lot of times, these situations are out of our control. I just want to get everything tightened up.”
On Tuesday, Huff was stopped around 11 a.m. for speeding toward New Jersey over the Walt Whitman Bridge.
Huff had a gun, a loaded magazine (not attached to the gun) and less than 50 grams of marijuana. He was charged for unlawful possession of a weapon and for prohibited weapons (hollow point bullets). He was also charged for having marijuana, a DUI, speeding and for obstructed view because the windows in his vehicle are tinted.
According to NBC10, Huff has a permit to carry the Smith & Wesson 9MM gun in Texas, but not New Jersey.
Huff, 25, was at the NovaCare Complex on Tuesday morning to watch film; his arrest happened sometime after that. As of Wednesday morning, Pederson said he and Huff had a private conversation, in which Huff expressed remorse.
“Well, I’ll just tell you this: He was very dejected and very disappointed and very apologetic, obviously,” the head coach said. “He said it wouldn’t happen again.”
Pederson said, as of Wednesday morning, the NFL had not yet been in contact with the team about the incident, but expected it would be at some point.
When he addressed the team on Wednesday morning, before practice, Pederson again emphasized the importance of his players’ making smart decisions when they’re away from the team complex.
This is just the latest of four off-field incidents Eagles have been involved in since June, when Nelson Agholor was accused of sexual assault (charges were dropped). More recently, linebacker Nigel Bradham had two run-ins with the law in Miami. In the first, he allegedly assaulted a hotel worker. In the more recent incident, Bradham tried to get through airport security with a loaded gun.
That means the last two incidents have involved firearms.
“I have them. I have hunting rifles and things like that,” Pederson said. “But they’re registered, they’ve got permits for them. Again, there’s league policies, there’s the Philadelphia Eagles’ policy and those are things that we visit every year and we just need to continue to revisit these things. I don’t necessarily understand why they need guns outside of maybe sport hunting or whatever. But we just continue to educate our players and try to curb it the best we can.”
The Eagles, as far as we know, haven’t disciplined Agholor or Bradham for their involvement in these off-the-field incidents and, for now, Huff will be no different.
“I think that there comes a time when there could be some discipline like that,” Pederson said. “Obviously this could be a case. Again, I just want to make sure these guys, that I’m doing right by these players and they’re doing right by themselves. And that we’re handling our business away from this building right. And if that means discipline at some point, then we address it at that point.”
When asked about where the line of discipline is drawn, Pederson used an unfortunate choice of words and said, “it’s hard to put a bullet point sort of checklist of what they do.”
About halfway through his 19-minute press conference, Pederson asked, “Do we play the Giants this week, by the way?”
They do. And Huff will join them.
The Oregon product has been a key member of the Eagles' special teams unit this year, his third in the NFL. He leads the league in kick return average (36.0) among players with at least seven kick returns.
It looks like he’ll be returning kicks for the Eagles in the near future, barring an outside force — the league or the law — preventing him.