The Eagles announced Tuesday that center Jason Kelce will go on full-season injured reserve. The team has signed veteran offensive lineman Steve Vallos. Kelce suffered MCL and ACL tears in Sunday's victory over Baltimore.
Kelce told the Daily News Tuesday that he is "looking forward to watching this team the rest of the way. I truly believe they have the talent and the coaching to achieve the highest reward."
The Eagles had hoped Tuesday's exam by team orthopedic surgeon Dr. Peter DeLuca would show Kelce's ACL tear was minor enough that he could play with it braced, after the MCL tear healed on its own. Obviously, that did not prove to be the case. Dallas Reynolds, who stepped in for Kelce Sunday, will make his first NFL start this week at Arizona.
Head athletic trainer Rick Burkholder said Tuesday that discussions later Monday, after the Eagles sketched out a scenario that might allow Kelce to return this season, led the Eagles to decide to have DeLuca repair Kelce's MCL. Then, Tuesday's exam showed Kelce had too much of an ACL tear, in an area where DeLuca needed to repair it.
Burkholder said Kelce will need an ACL reconstruction in three to four weeks, which will require a recovery period that will "take us into training camp next year."
Kelce's ligament will be replaced with a tendon, Burkholder said. He said Kelce went into Tuesday's exam hoping for the best but prepared for the worst, aware that he had suffered a serious knee injury.