Jeffery Has ‘Significant’ Foot Injury
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - Survive and advance.
That's the sentiment inside the NovaCare Complex right now as the playoffs started for the Eagles a month earlier than expected.
A dismal division had kept the door ajar for Philadelphia but a 5-7 start meant the margin for error was over, starting with Monday's 23-17 overtime win over the 2-11 New York Giants.
The style points weren't there against one of the worst teams in the NFL but the Eagles, now 6-7, survived and advanced, erasing a two-touchdown deficit en route to a 23-17 overtime win in which little-known players Boston Scott, Josh Perkins and Greg Ward mixed in with Zach Ertz to keep hope alive.
Doug Pederson didn't win the battle without some significant attrition, however, and the Eagles coach got back to work Tuesday morning understanding he will likely need to win the final three regular-seasn games without Alshon Jeffery.
Jeffery, the team's lone proven producer outside the numbers, was carted to the locker room after suffering a non-contact foot injury in the first half. Early reports were not good and a source told 973espn.com after the game that the fear was a season-ending injury while the NFL Network reported that Jeffery heard a pop when he came up lame.
Pederson wasn't willing to confirm Jeffery will be shut down Tuesday afternoon, claiming he was waiting on the results of one more test but did call the injury "significant."
“Alshon is a little more significant,” the coach admitted. “I am waiting on one more test result later this afternoon. It's a little more significant with him, and then we got to do a course of action plan with him.”
The Eagles currently have three receivers on the practice squad —- Marcus Green, Robert Davis, and Marken Michel -- and each could be in the mix to be promoted for Sunday's game at Washington. Philadelphia could also look outside the organization although the pickings are slim this time of year.
“Obviously, as you know, we could look outside the building if we need to, but we're going to look through that today and try to get something in place pretty quick,” Pederson said. “We'll be back on the field tomorrow.”
Rookie J.J. Arcega-Whiteside also suffered a hamstring injury late in the game against the Giants while Nelson Agholor has missed two of the past three games with a knee injury. For now, Greg Ward is the only fully healthy receiver the Eagles have.
As expected the Eagles avoided the worst-case scenario with right tackle Lane Johnson, who exited against the Giants after getting rolled up on by Carson Wentz after the quarterback was hit. Johnson suffered a high-ankle sprain and has been listed as week-to-week by Pederson, a designation that typically means a multi-week injury in the coach's lexicon.
Johnson was replaced by Halapoulivaati Vaitai and that will remain the plan for the Redskins with the tough-minded Johnson circling Week 16 against Dallas in what is expected to serve as a de facto NFC East title game. Pederson also mentioned that rookie Andre Dillard could continue cross-training while Matt Pryor is also available.
“We'll look at everything, obviously,” Pederson said before praising Vaitai. “I thought Big V did a nice job in the game yesterday. ... Right now we would consider just keeping the status quo.”
As for the other in-game injuries, cornerback Jalen Mills was listed as “day-to-day” after leaving with an elbow injury suffered when tackling Saquon Barkley in the second half.
“The only thing you'll see probably is a brace on his elbow but other than that, he's good,” Pederson said when discussing Mills.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen