Sirianni: “Don’t Know” About Starting QB Vs. Washington
Eagles HC: Hurts, Minshew Splitting Reps
The status of Jalen Hurts is once again uncertain headed into Sunday as the ankle injury that sidelined Hurts for the Eagles’ last game continues to leave the team with questions about their starting quarterback’s ability to play.
Head coach Nick Siriainni said Wednesday, in his first press conference coming out of the bye week, that Hurts and backup Gardner Minshew would both take first-teams reps in Wednesday’s walkthrough in preparation for Sunday’s game against the Washington Football Team at the Linc, adding that the team will be prepared for the event that Hurts will have to miss another game.
“We’ll see,” Sirianni said. “We’re going to do what we need to do in walkthrough [Wednesday] in how we divvy up the rips, like last walkthrough. Both Gardner and Jalen got reps and we’ll do the same thing [Wednesday] and we’ll see how everything goes [Thursday].”
Minshew started, and won, against the Jets on Dec. 5, a 33-18 win that improved the Eagles to 6-7 headed into the bye. Hurts suffered an ankle injury in the second half of the Eagles’ Nov. 28 loss to the Giants. Hurts had taken some reps earlier that week but Minshew took the most reps as the week progressed.
On the “Inside The Birds Live” pregame show Dec, 5, we reported that Hurts’ ankle injury was also causing the second-year pro to have discomfort in his heel.
Sirianni said he “know what exactly is going to happen” at the quarterback position for Sunday’s divisional showdown against a Covid-ravaged Washington team that’s also decimated by injuries.
“Just like I didn’t know last week what was gonna happen,” Sirianni added. “You want to make sure you’re covered if one guy can’t play.”
As for other players who were injured going into the bye week, Sirianni didn’t provide much detail. He said “there’s no change” in the status of Pro Bowl right guard Brandon Brooks, who has been out since Week 2 with a pectoral injury.
As for running back Jordan Howard, who has missed two games with a knee sprain, and center Jason Kelce, who’s been nursing a knee injury and exited early against the Jets, Sirianni said he was hopeful that both would be able to play and said both are trending toward better health.
Meanwhile, the Eagles so far have avoided an outbreak of Covid-19 that’s impacted other teams around the league, including Washington. As of Wednesday, the only Eagles on the Reserve/Covid-19 list were wide receiver Quez Watkins and practice squad running back Jason Huntley.
Washington on Wednesday added backup quarterback Kyle Allen to a growing Reserve/Covid-19 list that already included defensive end Montez Sweat; defensive tackles Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, and Tim Settle; and cornerback Kendall Fuller. Their starting quarterback, Taylor Heinicke, left Washington’s last game early with a knee injury although reports suggest Heinicki should be able to play against the Eagles.
Sirianni said the Eagles were still taking extra precautions this week to avoid an outbreak, including “some shuffling of the meeting rooms,” at the NovaCare Complex, and having meetings at the bubble with players and coaches masked.
– Geoff Mosher (@geoffmoshernfl) is co-host of the “Inside the Birds” podcast and staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com.
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