Lane Johnson didn’t like the feeling of being at home, watching the Eagles play the Carolina Panthers on TV last week. Maybe it felt a little too much like last year, when Johnson missed 10 games after an NFL suspension.
“I didn’t like it all, to be honest with you, as much time as I’ve spent away from this building the past two seasons,” said Johnson, who suffered a concussion in the first half of the Eagles’ rout of Arizona. “I feel fresh, I feel rejuvenated and ready to get back out there.”
Johnson faces an important matchup this week against Redskins pass rusher Ryan Kerrigan, one of the best in the league. Though Halapoulivaati Vaitai settled in after giving up a strip-sack on the Birds’ first drive at Carolina, having Johnson back at right tackle is significant.
“I’m proud of the way our team competed,” Johnson said. “After the first drive, I thought ‘Big V’ really settled in; he’s becoming the player I think he’s meant to be.”
Johnson said he was so antsy, he took a break from watching the game with his wife, “went to my room and chilled a little bit. But third and fourth quarter, I was in there watching it.”
Johnson said he doesn’t know when he suffered the concussion, even after going over film of the first half of the Arizona game with a team doctor.
“Everything just slowed down,” he said. “I just remember going in at halftime and feeling I wasn’t there.”
Johnson said this was his first concussion. He said he didn’t start to feel normal again until this past Saturday, and he passed the concussion protocol Monday.
Not too late for Nate
Nate Gerry, the Nebraska safety the Eagles drafted in the fifth round last spring with the intention of making into a linebacker, has been working through that transition on the team’s practice squad. But the season-ending knee injury to Chris Maragos earned Gerry a promotion to the 53-man roster Thursday. It isn’t clear whether he’ll be active this week against Washington.
“Obviously, it’s been frustrating to go out and practice and not play, but I saw it as a positive to me — to be able to learn a position that’s new to me still, develop as a linebacker and as a player,” Gerry said. “I’ve learned a lot from Jordan [Hicks] and Nigel [Bradham] and Mike [Kendricks] and those guys.”
Cornerback Ronald Darby returned to practice for the first time since suffering a dislocated ankle in the opener; he was listed as a limited participant, as were LB Jordan Hicks (calf), DT Beau Allen (foot), and DT Tim Jernigan (ankle). … RB Wendell Smallwood (knee) was a full participant.