It's been an interesting road for Eagles' cornerback Jack Ikegwuonu. Expected to be a high draft pick going into the 2008 draft, he injured his knee preparing for the combine.
Ikegwuonu then fell to the fourth round, where the Eagles snatched him up - but he spent all of his rookie season in injured reserve.
Playing for the first time on the rehabilitated knee, Ikegwuonu was unable to make the active roster for the 2009 season, but the Eagles thought enough of his long-term prospects to put him on the practice squad.
"I think what happened going into camp, they kind of felt that I still needed some work, both physically and with the technique on the field," he said. "And I understood that. I understood that I was just getting back, and it had been a long time since I had been on the field, so (it made sense) to put me on practice squad to physically get where I needed to be. And mentally, when you have to work for things, you appreciate them a lot more."
But the hard work for Ikegwuonu has paid off, as he was promoted by the Eagles to the active roster in place of Joselio Hanson, who will miss four games after being suspended by the league for using a banned substance.
"It would be an understatement if I said (I was) excited," said a smiling Ikegwuonu. "I'm just ecstatic and just looking forward to whatever my role is, I don't care. I just want to help the team in whatever capacity it is. Things like these aren't expected; you kind of get into a routine with the whole practice squad deal. ... So I'm just happy that they trust me enough to bring me up and help the team in any way I can."
The Eagles' secondary had been considered a position of strength, but, with Ellis Hobbs being placed on season-ending Injured Reserve, it has now lost two contributing members in a single day. The Eagles signed another cornerback, Ramzee Robinson, to take Hobbs' spot on the roster.
"Right now, I'm just kind of wait and see to find out what they're going to ask me to do," Ikegwuonu said of his expected role. "I've been here for a while, so I know what I'm doing in terms of the playbook. If I'm asked to go on the field, at least I know what I'm doing. So, they wouldn't have brought me up if they didn't trust me to be on the field and know what I'm doing. So I have to be ready to expect that if something happens to somebody, I have to be ready to go.
"I'm an outside corner. And they brought in Ramzee too, so me and him will probably be the next guys going in. We'll kind of wait and see what happens with Asante and Sheldon, they've got it locked down on the outside."
It appears all hands will be on deck in the Eagles' secondary for the coming week. Dimitri Patterson, who is returning from a quad injury, is expected to take over as the nickel cornerback in Hanson's absence.
"I'm excited just about playing, whether it was at nickel or special teams or whatever," Patterson said. "Just to be back on the field, I'm excited.
"It's always tough (having guys get injured), because these are guys you've been with since (Organized Team Activities) ... You just have to move forward and wish for the best."
The Eagles have also announced the resigning of Stoney Woodson to the practice squad, replacing the spot left vacant by Ikegquonu's promotion.
-- Posted by Bo Wulf, 3:50 p.m., November 11