Jernigan Gets Nicked at Eagles’ OTAs
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - Eagles defensive tackle Tim Jernigan limped off the field in the waning moments of Monday's OTA practice at the NovaCare Complex.
Jernigan, who had his right ankle heavily taped to begin with, was able to walk inside under his own power a few minutes short of what was a solid practice session.
This was the debut of Jernigan alongside Fletcher Cox on the interior of Philadelphia's defensive line, at least in an open practice environment.
Cox had missed the first week of on-field OTAs in order to spend some time with his family while Jernigan missed OTAs on Tuesday last week due to the birth of a child.
The Eagles acquired Jernigan in the offseason as the replacement for the departed Bennie Logan by swapping third-round picks with Baltimore Ravens and he is expected to give defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz more of what he wants inside, a consistent pass rush.
In addition to Jernigan's injury, wide receiver Jordan Matthews was sidelined for the second consecutive week with knee tendinitis, running back LeGarrette Blount was down due to an illness, offensive tackle Dillon Gordon was down with an unspecified injury, and linebacker Mychal Kendricks was absent as well although the Eagles would not confirm if that was due to the hamstring injury he suffered last week.
Veterans Jason Peters, Donnie Jones and Marcus Smith continue to stay away from the voluntary sessions as well.
On the field, Allen Barbre got some first-team reps at left guard in place of Isaac Seumalo, while Stefen Wisniewski got a few looks at center and LG. Meanwhile, Chance Warmack got a few opportunities in place of Brandon Brooks at RG.
Before practice, offensive coordinator Frank Reich had raved about his interior offensive line depth.
"Our guard situation is … I mean, our second-team guards should be starting on most teams," Reich claimed. "So it's a very competitive room, really good room; good for our team."
Nelson Agholor continued to handle slot duties in place of Matthews in the offense's base 11 personnel grouping while Bryce Treggs continued to run ahead of rookie Shelton Gibson on the offense.
On defense, it looks as if the Schwartz is leaning toward playing Brandon Graham at right end while Vinny Curry mans the left end with Chris Long and rookie first-round pick Derek Barnett mixing in from there.
As for the practice session itself, the defense took the day with a pair of interceptions off Carson Wentz late. First linebacker Nigel Bradham ripped the football away from veteran tight end Brent Celek and later Jaylen Watkins was in the right place, right time when Wentz overthrew Trey Burton.
EAGLES SIGN GABE WRIGHT
The Eagles have been up against it as far as numbers at defensive tackle this spring.
Beau Allen is sidelined for the foreseeable future with a torn pec, rookie Elijah Qualls is back in school because the University of Washington uses the quarters system, Cox missed the first week of OTAs as mentioned and Jernigan is now dealing with a balky ankle.
To deal with that the team signed Gabe Wright, a 6-foot-3, 305-pound former fourth-round pick of the Lions in 2015. Wright played five games with Cleveland last season and was recently released.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen