Good morning, Eagles fans! The Eagles practice again today at 1 p.m. with media availability in the locker room after. It will be the second practice for wide receiver Jordan Matthews and Carson Wentz with the starting offensive unit as they continue preparations for Sunday's matchup against the Colts. Here's what you need to know for today's Morning Roundup presented by Microsoft.
1. Carrying The Run Game
Both Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles did not practice on Wednesday. It doesn't mean they will be ruled out for Sunday's game against the Colts, but the depth of the running game will be tested and that means players like Josh Adams, who was recently called up from the practice squad, Wendell Smallwood, and Corey Clement will have to make the most of their coming opportunities. Eagles' Insider Dave Spadaro has more on the state of the running game:
"You have to be ready for everything and anything," second-year man Corey Clement said. "You never know when something is going to happen and your number gets called. You prepare during the week to play. That's your job."
2. Snagging Carson
The Eagles have Carson Wentz to be the franchise quarterback for years to come. But it wasn't easy to get him. Bo Wulf from The Athletic chronicled the incredible journey the Eagles took to select Wentz with the No. 2 pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. It began with hiring Doug Pederson as head coach and went on to explain the trades Howie Roseman pulled off starting with the Miami Dolphins:
"To this day, I've drank in my office one day," Roseman now says. "We all took a shot when the trade went through at 4 o'clock. Because now we're in position."
3. Wentz Wants A Win
Wentz fielded questions at the podium yesterday for the first time since being cleared for contact and named the starting quarterback for Week 3 against the Colts. He spoke about the emotions of the return, how hard he has worked to get here, and how exciting the atmosphere will be at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday. Wentz said he plans to cherish every moment, but his primary goal is to get a victory:
"We expect to go up, start fast, play fast, get clicking, so I truly believe that's a realistic expectation," Wentz said. "I know once I'm out there, I'll feel good ... the more experience the better, but I think it'll come second nature when I'm out there."
4. JMatt Joins In
The Eagles signed wide receiver Jordan Matthews yesterday after Mike Wallace went on Injured Reserve and gave another blow to the Eagles' wide receiver depth. The offense needed help, so they turned to an old friend. Matthews, who was drafted by the Eagles in 2014 and spent three seasons in midnight green, has familiarity with the offense and the players. He and Pederson spoke yesterday about his return and how he can fit in with the Eagles' offense.
"I always keep up with them as far as what the team is doing, even last year with the playoff run and everything," said Matthews after his first practice with the Eagles on Wednesday. "So, we knew when there was an opportunity for me to be able to come back and play, we were like, 'Yo, let's do this. Let's have a good time and make some more memories.'"
5. Joyner's Journey
The Eagles will induct Clyde Simmons and Seth Joyner into the Eagles' Hall of Fame on Sunday with a ceremony at halftime on Sunday that you can watch live here on PhiladelphiaEagles.com. Both Simmons and Joyner are late-round picks whose careers surprised everyone except those who drafted them. Joyner, an eighth-round pick in 1986 under head coach Buddy Ryan, admits he was supposed to be a Training Camp Body, someone to fill a position for the summer and give reps to the guys who will really make the team. Dave Spadaro has more on how Joyner went from that to becoming an integral part of the notorious Gang Green defense and an Eagles Hall of Famer:
"Yeah, I was a Training Camp Body," Seth Joyner says now, with a laugh. "Absolutely. Anybody drafted past the fifth round looked at themselves that way. There were no guarantees. When I look back at it retrospectively, I feel that way. Back then, I was a 20-year-old kid, the youngest player in the league. I probably had some delusions that I was going to make an immediate impact."
6. Mills Set For Bounce-Back Performance
Jalen Mills had a tough outing on Sunday against the Buccaneers as he was credited with allowing two of Buccaneers quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick's four touchdown passes of the day. Not every mistake or touchdown was solely on Mills but nonetheless, he is ready to rebound. Chris McPherson has more about how Mills believes he wasn't himself last Sunday and his opportunity against tough Colts receivers on Sunday:
"Being a guy on the team who is a very high-energy guy, a guy who plays with a lot of passion, and effort, I've got to know that I have to set the tone not only for myself, but for the guys on this team and the guys who look up to me to do that," Mills said.
7. Practice Squad Moves
The Eagles signed wide receiver DeAndre Carter and tight end Billy Brown to the practice squad and released wide receiver Reggie Davis from the practice squad on Thursday. The Arizona Cardinals picked up linebacker Joe Walker from the Eagles' practice squad to put on their active roster and the Eagles brought back linebacker Asantay Brown to the practice squad in his place Wednesday.
8. Power Rankings Roundup
Pro Football Focus - No. 1
Philadelphia has stumbled out of the gate but gets Carson Wentz back for Week 3. Nick Foles has not looked like the same quarterback that led them to a Super Bowl in 2017 and even more concerning is their struggles defending the pass, allowing 49 percent of early down attempts to be successful from an expected points added (EPA) standpoint. However, they have been successful getting after the quarterback with a pressure percentage of 40 percent on dropbacks. Our model believes Week 2 was a small blip on the radar for the Eagles in 2018.
ESPN - No. 5
The Eagles are allowing a league-best 2.85 yards per rush and 58.5 yards per game. They also are posting a league-best 1.34 yards allowed before first contact per rush.
Pro Football Talk - No. 5
With Carson Wentz back at quarterback and with plenty of receivers injured, maybe Nick Foles should change positions.
NFL.com - No. 8
This is not an overreaction to the defeat in Tampa, either. Most of us thought Carson Wentz would already have game action by now. (He'll finally get the nod in Week 3.) No one foresaw the spate of injuries at wide receiver and running back. With Nelson Agholor bumped up to No. 1 WR and the offense going to its new TE2 (Joshua Perkins) more than expected -- thanks to the blanketing of Zach Ertz -- the air game is not anywhere close to championship level.
CBS Sports - No. 10
They might get Carson Wentz back this week, which they need. But they have other issues that showed up against Tampa Bay.