Sunday, November 29, 2015

Digesting the Jackson, Weaver injuries

Center Jamaal Jackson and fullback Leonard Weaver are likely out for the season. Where do the Eagles go from here at those two positions?

Digesting the Jackson, Weaver injuries

Leonard Weaver leaves the field after injuring his knee during the second quarter against the Green Bay Packers.  (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Leonard Weaver leaves the field after injuring his knee during the second quarter against the Green Bay Packers. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

The injury news from Andy Reid following the Eagles' 27-20 loss to the Packers was not good.

Reid said fullback Leonard Weaver has a torn ACL and center Jamaal Jackson suffered a torn biceps, likely ending both of their seasons.

While we won't know for sure until Monday, it's reasonable to contemplate what direction the Eagles will go in to replace the two starters on offense.

Let's start with center. In reality, the Eagles were preparing to be without Jackson during much of the offseason and the preseason. Jackson somehow made it back to start this game after suffering a torn ACL a little more than eight months ago. The guy who got his reps for most of the preseason was the same guy who replaced him tonight: Mike McGlynn.

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McGlynn is an unknown, but the good news is he's been preparing to play as a starter. Will he perform at the level of a healthy Jackson? Probably not. But even before this game, Reid said he'd have to monitor Jackson in Week 1, leaving open the possibility that McGlynn would have to play.

Don't expect the Eagles to make any kind of roster move at center. They'll go with McGlynn, and Nick Cole, who is starting at right guard, will back him up.

Fullback is a different story. The Eagles only kept one on their roster with Weaver. For much of training camp, rookie Charles Scott was playing as the backup, but the Eagles traded him to the Cardinals in exchange for cornerback/return manJorrick Calvin. On the practice squad, the Birds have Garrett Mills, who has been listed as both a tight end and a fullback. He could be an option, but the Eagles could certainly make a roster move to bring someone in.

Overall, the losses are big. Jackson is the leader of the offensive line. McGlynn is going to be in charge of directing protection, but it helps that he has a relatively experienced supporting cast to work with along the O-line.

As for Weaver, the Eagles were expecting him to be one of the team's veteran leaders. Judging by the preseason, Weaver and LeSean McCoy were continuing to build chemistry in their second season together. He was also valuable in terms of picking up blitzers, which was already critical, considering the Eagles have a first-year starting quarterback. It becomes even more important with Jackson going down.

Weaver had 85 touches in 2009 (70 carries, 15 catches), and I expected him to have at least that many this season. Now those touches will have to go to McCoy or Mike Bell.

It will be an interesting week at NovaCare. The team will be fielding questions about how it handled the concussions of Kevin Kolb and Stewart Bradley. And the Kolb/Michael Vick debate will surely spiral out of control by Monday afternoon.

Meanwhile, McGlynn will start getting ready for Detroit, and Howie Roseman will be looking for a fullback.

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About this blog
Sheil Kapadia is in his fifth season writing about the Eagles and the NFL for His earliest memories as a sports fan include several trips to Veterans Stadium with his Dad. He's not a beat writer or an Insider, but is here to discuss the NFL 365 days a year. E-mail him at or by clicking here

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