PHILADELPHIA – The Eagles are satisfied with the job Britain Covey has one returning punts and decided to add him to their 53-man roster on Saturday afternoon.
The team also promoted safety Andre Chachere from the practice squad for the first time this season.
Chachere is a safety by trade but was cross-trained as a slot cornerback during training camp. The Eagles may need him in either role depending on how defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon decides to replace Avonte Maddox, who is out with an ankle injury.
Covey was out of practice squad elevations. Each team is allowed to promote a player from the PS just three times before a decision must be made to add him to the roster or be without his services for the remainder of the season.
“I think Britain’s done a really good job," said Eagles special teams coordinator Michael Clay. "I think Britain, first three weeks in the NFL against some real dudes, you actually feel the real speed of some guys.
“This isn’t the third or the second pre-season game or in practice. You have guys that I believe, (Minnesota Vikings) Kris Boyd is one of the best gunners in the league, (Washington Commanders) Percy Butler is a really good gunner. And all those guys in Detroit, you start feeling some real speed out there.”
Covey is averaging 6.1 yards on 10 returns. He has five fair catches and he has one muffed punt, which came last week against Washington.
“I know he muffed that ball right there,” said Clay. “We can't have any situation where the ball is on the ground. Besides that, he's putting his foot on the ground, getting yards right there. Hopefully, he keeps keeping his momentum, we're blocking better for him, and one of those 12 yards, springs for something bigger.”
The Eagles also didn’t have much of a choice to go with Covey because, well, who else was equipped to handle the job?
DeVonta Smith did it for the first time against Washington and gained 12 yards.
The high-flying, acrobatic pass-catcher, though, wouldn’t benefit by using him four or five times every game to return punts. It’s too high risk.
“Once again, you balance everything in the game,” said Clay. “It was early on in the game. Just to get him going right there, you have that one. Then we didn't need to see him anywhere else. You saw what he did offense-wise.
“Again, it's a balance. I wouldn’t say if we're going to be up three scores or something like that, ‘Hey, let's throw DeVonta in there.’ It has to be a situation when we’re going to throw him in there or just to get something going.”
Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Fan Nation Eagles Today and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles or www.eaglesmaven.com and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.