Eagles Notes: Riley Cooper, Lane Johnson Miss Practice

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

The Eagles returned to practice today to prepare for Thursday’s preseason finale against the New York Jets, and Chip Kelly provided injury updates before taking the field.

Although Kiko Alonso missed Saturday’s game with a ‘nagging leg injury,’ he practiced today. Lane Johnson, who left Saturday’s game early with a knee injury, didn’t participate in Monday’s practice, nor did Riley Cooper. Kelly said Johnson could have returned in Saturday’s game if it had been a regular season contest, but he was held out as a precaution.

Meanwhile, Cody Parkey is still dealing with a “a slight groin” injury, and it’s unclear whether he will see play Thursday.

Some other news and notes from Kelly’s presser:

  • Through three preseason games, Cooper has recorded just one rush for nine yards. He was the target of Sam Bradford‘s first incompletion as an Eagle, but the play was called back because of a holding call. Kelly, however, said there’s no particular reason for his lack of production.

“I just think it’s the way he’s gone when he’s out there,” Kelly said. “We’re not — we haven’t scripted or game-planned for any of our first three opponents. We’re just calling plays, and however they express themselves, they express themselves.”

  • Kelly was asked what his big takeaways were from the video the NFL sent in response to the Terrell Suggs hit on Sam Bradford.

“If you’re handing the ball off, you can be hit,” Kelly said. “Whether you’re under the center — it doesn’t matter what running play you’re running. It was explained to us, you could have your back turned to the defense, and if there’s the potential for you to bootleg out of it, then you can be hit.

“It has nothing to do with the play. I think that’s the biggest thing we came away from it. It doesn’t matter what play you’re running. If you’re handing the ball off, and there’s the potential that you could keep it on a bootleg or whatever, you can be hit. Those are the rules, and we’ll practice with the rules they have.”

  • While the starting safety spots seem to be secure, the team’s two backup safety roster spots remain up in the air heading into the final game of the preseason.

Kelly said the depth at safety “took a little bit of a hit” when Jerome Couplin went down with an injury earlier in the preseason.

Couplin, Ed Reynolds and Chris Prosisnki have positioned themselves as the three candidates vying for those two open slots.

“We feel real confident in Walter [Thurmond] and Malcolm [Jenkins], and then we’ll have to see who our third and fourth safeties are. That’s still a big question mark going into Thursday’s game against the Jets.

“They’ve all shown up at times. It’s just a matter of figuring out, what should that be?”

Kelly said conversations about how many players to keep at each position are still ongoing between the coaches.

“We’ve got these three days, and then we’ve got the game against the Jets before we say we want to keep three tight ends, or four running backs, or two quarterbacks, or nine DBs, or whatever. We’ll get to that point.”

  • On Dennis Kelly, who is still competing for one of the available spots as a backup offensive lineman.

“Dennis has been really consistent. I think this has been his best camp, to be honest with you,” Kelly said. “He’s been really consistent at both guard and tackle. We’ve used him on the left side and we’ve used him on the right side. He’s got experience, he’s started in games for us. I’m a big Dennis fan. You know that this is what you’re going to get from him every day; there’s not a lot of missed assignments with Dennis. He’s always dialed in to what he’s done.”