Eagles Captain Has ‘Significant’ Injury, 3 Pass Rushers Hurting

Vinny Curry

Getty Vinny Curry had five sacks last year for the Eagles and was one of their most productive pass rushers after Week 12.

The Eagles are going to be without two key role players for multiple weeks, according to Doug Pederson.

Cornerback Craig James and defensive end Vinny Curry both limped off the field in Week 1 with undisclosed ailments and both injuries are considered “significant.” James was recently named a team captain and serves as a special-teams ace, along with Rudy Ford and Duke Riley.

Meanwhile, Curry was the fourth edge rusher behind Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett and Josh Sweat. His absence could prove costly since Graham is in the concussion protocol (left in the fourth quarter) and Barnett has been out with a nagging hamstring injury since camp opened. It’s not very sunny in Philadelphia right now.

“Vinny Curry and Craig James, both significant injuries. They are going to miss some time here, the next couple of weeks,” the head coach said on Monday. “So don’t anticipate either one of those [guys] back.”

The Eagles are already razor-thin at defensive end, as mentioned above. Pederson may be forced to call up Joe Ostman off the practice squad while moving veteran Genard Avery and rookie Casey Toohill into bigger roles. Toohill and Barnett were both inactive for Week 1. Avery was in on 29-percent of the defensive snaps on Sunday and recorded half a sack.

Miles Sanders (hamstring) and Lane Johnson (ankle) remain day-to-day, but the two offensive starters will see an increase in practice reps this week. Pederson said “hopefully” they will be available for Week 2: “But, again, it’s kind of day-to-day with those guys.”

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The Curious Case of DeSean Jackson

DeSean Jackson was supposed to be the Eagles’ No. 1 receiver, especially with Alshon Jeffery out for the first few weeks. Yet the California burner was oddly missing from the gameplan in Week 1 and only played on 54-percent of the offensive snaps. Apparently, the Eagles are trying to keep him fresh for the “long haul.”

“Obviously he’s a big part of the offense but at the same time we want to make sure, you know, he’s a guy that is healthy and fresh for us down the long haul here,” Pederson said. “I think each week, I would anticipate his reps to increase as we go. We’re going to be smart with him, but we know he’s an explosive receiver for us and we want to get him on the field as much as possible moving forward.”

There had been talk about Jackson possibly re-aggravating his core muscle injury from last year, but the 33-year-old receiver put those rumors to bed. He tweeted out: “For the record I wasn’t hurt or didn’t get hurt. I’m good.”

“On Miles and Lane and some of the other guys, Derek Barnett, we’re going to increase their practice time this week,” Pederson said, “and we’re going to see as the week goes on where they are, and hopefully they will be available for the game on Sunday.”

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