Jalen Mills Returns to Eagles Practice: ‘Got My Hands on a Ball’

Jalen Mills

Getty Jalen Mills will return to the Eagles in 2020 in a hybrid role as a safety and cornerback.

It’s been nearly a year since Jalen Mills ran around the practice field. On Wednesday, the Eagles cornerback nearly had an interception.

Mills, who expects to start Sunday in Dallas, was finally cleared to practice earlier this week and made his triumphant return from a bad foot sprain. The 25-year-old is being counted on mightily to upgrade an underachieving Eagles secondary. On his first day, Mills told reporters he got his hands on a ball and nearly had an interception.

“It was fun, you know what I’m saying, “I got my hands on a ball and could have had a pick, but I dropped it,” Mills said.

Good news that he’s making an impact already. But maybe a tad concerning he dropped it?

The Eagles have not declared him the starter for Sunday as Mills was set to meet with the coaching staff after practice. Barring some bizarre unforeseen circumstance, he’ll be out there. He wants to show everyone what they were missing.

“That’s always my mindset … but it’s also the training staff, and it’s the head coach and it’s the defensive coordinator and they have to make that call,” said Mills.

The Eagles List Eight Players on Injury Report

The walking wounded is up to eight on the Eagles’ roster. The team had seven players miss practice and one player limited in Wednesday’s session. Nigel Bradham (ankle), Fletcher Cox (illness), DeSean Jackson (abdomen), Tim Jernigan (foot), Avonte Maddox (concussion, neck), Jason Peters (knee), Darren Sproles (quadricep), while Ronald Darby was a limited participant with his sore hamstring.

It looks less and less likely that Jackson will play Sunday in Dallas despite being classified as “day-to-day” by head coach Doug Pederson. Bradham seems like a longshot to play, too. Darby might be a game-time decision, considering his history with this injury. Cox was excused from practice due to an illness, but the severity of that is unknown. Jernigan, Maddox, Peters and Sproles have all been ruled out.

Doug Pederson Says Zach Brown Wasn’t Cut for Comments

The exact reasons surrounding Zach Brown’s abrupt departure had been unclear. Was he released because he criticized Kirk Cousins in the media? Or was the move due to his poor play on the field? It seems like a combination of the two, considering the timing of it and the team’s lack of linebacker depth.

Eagles head coach Doug Pederson didn’t completely give updated reasons or answers. However, he made it clear that Brown’s controversial comments had nothing to do with it. Pederson indicated Brown’s poor play, combined with guys he likes better further down the depth chart, played a part in the decision.

“We need a little more production out of that group, and so we made a change,” Pederson said. “He [Brown] was our starting linebacker, and this gives us an opportunity now to get some young guys on the roster, give T.J. [Edwards] an opportunity. [LB] Duke Riley gets an opportunity. We’ll keep working those guys in.”

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