The Philadelphia Eagles added a new face to the roster on their first day back at the NovaCare Complex. The team signed receiver Tyrie Cleveland to the practice squad on Tuesday as the team started preparations for their NFC divisional round matchup against the New York Giants.
The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder gives the NFC East champs a playmaker with serious wheels and legit special-teams experience. Cleveland, a seventh-round pick in 2020, has eight career receptions for 91 yards on 17 targets in 23 games. He carved out a reputation as an explosive kick returner – 12 returns for 252 yards – during his first two NFL seasons.
Cleveland ran the 40-yard dash in 4.46 seconds while earning accolades as a “core” special-teams player on 320 snaps for the Denver Broncos. The 25-year-old was a favorite of former Broncos special-teams coordinator Dwyane Stukes who was fired on December 26. His upside is undeniable, especially on an Eagles team lacking a serious threat (apologies to Britain Covey) on returns.
“He’s athletic, he brings the physicality we’re looking for, and he brings the speed we’re looking for,” Stokes said, via Mile High Report. “My opinion on him has not changed since Day 1. I’ll say it again, he’s also being evaluated as a receiver. That’s going to play a part in it, but we want him to be a core special teams player. I’m going to keep saying that as well.”
Prior to that, Cleveland was a reliable target at the University of Florida where he racked up 1,271 yards on 79 catches with 8 touchdowns. He totaled 242 kick return yards while appearing in 46 games, including 26 starts. The speedy Houston native was named to the SEC Community Service Team in 2019.
No Injury Designation for Jalen Hurts on Report
The Eagles conducted a walk-through on Tuesday and all eyes were on Jalen Hurts. The dual-threat quarterback has been dealing with a strained right throwing shoulder since December 18. Hurts played in the regular-season finale on January 8, but walked away from the game sore. He appears ready to go for the NFC divisional round, carrying no injury designation on the first injury report of the week.
The Eagles did list four players on the injury report, including nickel cornerback Avonte Maddox. He sat out with a toe ailment and the team will monitor Maddox throughout the week, according to head coach Nick Sirianni. Everyone else should be good to go.
“We’ll see. He’s getting better,” Sirianni said of Maddox. “But we’ll see on him. You guys will get the practice report of everybody at practice.”
Jalen Hurts Calls Lane Johnson ‘True Warrior’
Right tackle Lane Johnson is expected to start on Saturday night against New York. He declared himself healthy last week and nothing seems to have changed. No setbacks. Hurts wasn’t willing to declare Johnson good to go, but he was quick to praise his toughness.
“I know he’s a true warrior,” Hurts said, “and I know he’s eager to be out there with us. And that’ll be a decision that he has to make.”
Sirianni gave a more generic update, lumping Johnson in with all the walking wounded.
He said: “Yeah, you always are going to watch the guys that you want to make sure they’re progressing the way they’re supposed to so they’re ready to go on Saturday.”