Eagles Lane Johnson Practices, Zach Ertz Does Not

Ed Kracz

It was much too chilly for the Eagles to practice outside on Wednesday.

Usually the nip in the air doesn’t matter and the Eagles are outside, but they are playing the Miami Dolphins on Sunday and it figures to be warm in South Florida. Not only did the Eagles prepare for the warmth that awaits them, but whoever is in charge of such things seemed to turn the temperature up several degrees just to be sure.

Really though, it didn’t matter where the Eagles practice these days because it seems, when it comes to injuries, they can’t get a break. It feels as if they take one step forward, but it’s not long before they take another step backward.

Right tackle Lane Johnson returned to practice for the first time since suffering a concussion early in the Eagles’ 17-10 loss to the New England Patriots two weeks ago, but tight end Zach Ertz did not practice due to what the team listed on their practice report as a hamstring injury.

The Eagles and hamstring injuries don’t mix well. They tend to last longer than just one day. In fact, they tend to last weeks.

If there’s any good news, though, Ertz was on the practice field Wednesday with a helmet. The bad news would be that he did not participate in any individual drills.

So it will be interesting to monitor Ertz’s situation as the Eagles head into Thanksgiving and beyond.

The same could be said for Johnson. It was encouraging that he was listed as a full participant.

Earlier in the day, though, head coach Doug Pederson said Johnson was cleared for practice only. That means he is still in concussion protocol, but that is standard for concussions, when a player must demonstrate he can handle ramped-up physical activity.

Also not practicing was defensive end Vinny Curry, but it was for reasons not related to injury.

Running back Jordan Howard (shoulder), receivers Alshon Jeffery (ankle) and Nelson Agholor (knee), and left tackle Jason Peters (knee) were limited in practice.

Howard remains a long-term concern. He still has not been cleared for contact and won’t be until he regains full strength in his shoulder. Right now he appears on track to miss his third straight game coming out of the Eagles’ bye week.

Also listed as full participants in Wednesday’s practice, in addition to Johnson, were right guard Brandon Brooks (illness) and quarterback Carson Wentz (right hand).

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