Eagles Rule 7 Players Out, Announce New Starter Due to COVID-19

Jamon Brown

Getty Jamon Brown #68 of the Atlanta Falcons.

The revolving door that is the Eagles’ 2020 offensive line will get a new part on Sunday as Jamon Brown takes over at right guard. The six-year veteran will be part of a completely revamped right side with Lane Johnson and Matt Pryor ruled out.

Brown (6-foot-4, 340 pounds) will slide into Pryor’s slot at right guard, while rookie Jack Driscoll fills in for Johnson at right tackle. The Eagles stole Brown off the Bears’ practice squad and the former third-round pick has played in 60 NFL games, including 47 starts.

“One of the things, he’s played and started in this league,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said of Brown. “You go back and watch some of his tape, he’s done some things well.”

Meanwhile, Pryor was originally listed out with an illness and then later placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. He’ll have to clear the protocols and turn in three consecutive negative tests to return.

“In the case of Matt Pryor, just like some of our players here recently have fallen into a little bit of the illness issue,” Pederson told reporters. “Illness protocol with him, so we’re taking all the precautions and making sure that he’s safe and healthy.”

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Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson Ruled Out

The Eagles will once again be without their two starting receivers this week as Alshon Jeffery (foot) and DeSean Jackson (hamstring) aren’t fully healed. The organization has come under scrutiny for not placing Jeffery on the PUP list to start the year because they thought he’d be back much sooner than Week 6.

“I mean, listen, I think medically Alshon’s case, our case, we were hopeful that within the six weeks he would have been back,” Pederson said. “I can’t second-guess the decision, obviously, but he is getting close, and we’re excited about that.”

Jackson could have been placed on short-term IR three weeks ago to free up a roster spot as well. Obviously he wasn’t.

Darius Slay Listed Questionable, Expected to Play

Shutdown cornerback Darius Slay was officially listed “questionable” on the Eagles’ final injury report but he will reportedly play on Sunday unless he shows last-minute symptoms. Slay is in the NFL’s concussion protocol.

“He’s been in the protocol all week,” Pederson said. “Part of the protocol was him getting out there yesterday and participating in practice. He did that, and he was cleared this morning by the independent, so he’s good to go.“

Assuming no symptoms arise within 24 hours, Slay will suit up against Baltimore and most likely be stuck to Ravens receiver Marquise “Hollywood” Brown like glue. The Eagles are likely to keep Jalen Mills at the other starting cornerbacks spot, with rookie K’Von Wallace joining Rodney McLeod as the team’s starting safety tandem. Marcus Epps remains out for Philly with a rib injury.

The good news is the Eagles have very few COVID-19-related issues, aside from Pryor this week. Pederson himself tested positive early in training camp but hasn’t had any complications.

“We’re testing daily, which is part of the protocol,” Pederson said. “So far we have been clean and clear. At the same time we’ve got to take precautions to make sure that if something does happen that we’re prepared, we’re ready, and we’ve got to stick to the guidelines, the protocols that have been in place.”

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