Jalen Hurts went through pregame warmups on Thursday night and showed no signs of any injury. When the lights came on and the opening whistle blew, Joe Flacco was the starting quarterback. Later, the Philadelphia Eagles announced Hurts was dealing with an undisclosed illness (not COVID-19) and out for the second preseason game.
Flacco went 10-of-17 for 83 yards in the first half, with an interception and fumble. The former Super Bowl MVP employed a mostly dink-and-dunk strategy, nothing too awe inspiring. Flacco did hit DeVonta Smith two times for 19 yards, including a nine-yarder for his first career NFL reception. The Eagles went into the halftime locker room down 19-0 to the New England Patriots.
Throw the score out the window. The only thing on people’s minds was what happened to Hurts. The Eagles’ starter enjoyed a dominant week of joint practices, plus he looked nimble and confident prior to kickoff. Head coach Nick Sirianni said the plan was to play Hurts for “one or two series,” then his health took a turn for the worst.
“Yea, we decided we wanted to play him one or two series today but we came in after warmups and he wasn’t feeling well,” Sirianni told Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro, “so we’re evaluating him and we’ll have more after the game.”
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Jason Croom Leaves Field on Cart
Eagles reserve tight end Jason Croom twisted his right knee badly on a non-contact play in the first half. The medical staff put an air cast on Croom’s leg as the entire team came over to console him. He rode off on a cart and his 2021 season is very much in jeopardy.
Croom, a converted college wide receiver, was trying to make the roster as the third tight end. Tyree Jackson was winning that job through the first three weeks of training camp until a back injury sidelined him earlier this week. Veteran Richard Rodgers and rookie Jack Stoll are the remaining options at tight end.
K’Von Wallace Re-Aggravates Groin Injury
Second-year safety K’Von Wallace re-aggravated a groin injury that kept him out of the first preseason game. The former Clemson standout returned ahead of schedule – channeling his inner Wolverine – and started on Thursday night against the Patriots. He recorded two tackles before leaving the field for good.
“Preseason, it’s all about getting better and I feel like I missed the opportunity last year due to the pandemic,” Wallace told reporters, via Eagle Maven. “But it was a blessing in disguise because now I feel like I’m more ready now than I ever could be. I feel like last year if I would’ve had a preseason, I would’ve probably gotten more playing time, so I had to prove myself.”
Marcus Epps would likely slide into Wallace’s starting spot if he’s out for an extended period. Both players are simply place-holders for rehabbing Rodney McLeod. Look for Andrew Adams, Blake Countess, Elijah Riley, Grayland Arnold to all see significantly more snaps.