Eagles CB Ronald Darby returning to practice this week

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Eagles cornerback Ronald Darby gets carted off the field during the second quarter against the Redskins on Sept. 10.

Eagles cornerback Ronald Darby will return to practice this week for the first time since injuring his ankle in Week 1 against Washington. It’s not yet clear if Darby will play Monday night when the Eagles host Washington, but his return could be a major development for the defense because he is the Eagles’ No. 1 cornerback.

“I can’t commit at this time if he’s going to be ready, but we’re going to get him some reps this week and see where he’s at,” coach Doug Pederson said Thursday. “He’s doing extremely well.”

After dislocating his ankle, Darby said the timetable would be 4-6 weeks. That was encouraging for the Eagles because the injury appeared to be more serious when it happened. Pederson said the Eagles were not going to rush him, and this week is the back end of that timetable. Darby traveled with the team last week to Carolina, a sign that he’s improving. But being ready for game action is a different standard.

“Obviously with the time off, there are a lot of things that are involved,” Pederson said. “Conditioning, No. 1. How sore does he get during the week. And by no means do I want to rush him back where I said, ‘This is the week — let’s go play.’ There are a lot of factors that have to be sort of right and the stars have to align for him to be ready to go. This week would be good to get back and get the process of practicing and getting the conditioning.”