Eagles Wake-Up Call: Kendricks Set To Return

kendricks_940_100113When Mychal Kendricks looks back now, he realizes things have could have been a lot worse.

The Eagles’ second-year linebacker fought off a block against Packers guard Josh Sitton and flowed to the ball-carrier, Eddie Lacy. That’s when teammate Earl Wolff came flying in and nailed Kendricks in the right knee.

“I’m glad that we had this bye week,” Kendricks said. “And I’m also thankful for the fact that nothing serious happened. Because we were talking something very serious. It could have been something structurally or if Earl hits lower down on the knee and my foot’s in the ground, everything could have been torn. So I’m just thankful for the fact that nothing serious happened and that I missed two games instead of three.”

Kendricks described his injury as a deep bone bruise/thigh contusion/hyperextension. He only played the first two snaps against Green Bay and missed the Redskins game. But Kendricks was a full participant in Tuesday’s practice and barring any setbacks should start Sunday against Arizona.

“Today was the first day I was able to go full-go without any type of thought about it, babying it or favoring it or anything like that,” he said.

The bye ended up coming at a good time for the Eagles. Wolff isn’t expected to play vs. the Cardinals, but everyone else should be available.

Kendricks has lacked consistency, but the coaching staff felt he was starting to get on a roll before the injury. He followed a 17-tackle performance against the Raiders with a 12-tackle outing vs. the Giants.

“Being in the swing of things, starting to get the feel for it like, ‘I’m a beast now. I’m killing it.’ And then I get hurt, sit back down,” Kenricks said. “It’s frustrating, knowing I was top-26 for tackles in the league and I was pushing. I have my goals too. And having to sit out that game and I made the first two tackles… had to sit out the rest of that game and then missing one to kind of fall back in the ranks. But things happen and I’ll pick up right where I left off.”

The Eagles’ defense has limited opponents to 21 points or fewer in seven straight games, but there are challenges ahead. As Chip Kelly said, they’ll need all hands on deck for the stretch run. And that includes Kendricks continuing what he started before he got injured.

WHAT YOU MISSED

“You can’t be naive,” says Michael Vick. T-Mac on Vick’s role as a backup.

Nick Foles on how he can prove to Kelly that he deserves to be the Eagles’ long-term option at QB.

Full injury update from McManus.

Kelly explains the Foles decision.

A position-by-position look at the Eagles’ offense going into the final five games.

The Eagles have placed a new emphasis on the LB position, says Howie Roseman.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Les Bowen of the Daily News catches up with Foles’ Dad, Larry:

“I think Nick could play for most teams,” his father said. “If a team ran a straight option, like in the old [wishbone] days, he wouldn’t be good at that, but an offense that asks the quarterback to read and respond, I think he’s really good at, because he’s smart.

“He’s young. He’s going to get better and better.”

ESPN.com has the Eagles ranked 11th in his power rankings:

Nick Foles is 4-1 with a 63.6 completion percentage, 16 touchdowns and no interceptions. Michael Vick is 2-4 with a 54.6 completion percentage, five touchdowns and three picks. End of controversy.

COMING UP

We’ll talk to Billy Davis, Pat Shurmur and the players at the NovaCare Complex.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
Become a fan of Birds 24/7 on Facebook.