Head Coach Doug Pederson said that right guard Matt Pryor will miss Sunday's game against the Baltimore Ravens due to an illness. Veteran guard Jamon Brown will make his Eagles debut and start at right guard in Pryor's place.
"He's done a really nice job," Pederson said of Brown. "He's a smart guy. He's aggressive coming off the ball. He fits in really well."
Brown played in 60 career regular-season games (47 starts) in his first five NFL seasons. Thirty-seven of those starts came at the right guard position.
The Eagles will have their fifth different offensive line combination in six games. Lane Johnson is also out due to his surgically repaired ankle. Rookie Jack Driscoll, who started in Johnson's place at right tackle in the season opener, is ready to go.
Pederson added that cornerback Darius Slay cleared the concussion protocol and is on track to play against the Ravens. He is officially questionable to account for any potential symptoms in the next 48 hours.
Seven total players were ruled out for Sunday including Pryor and Johnson: safety Marcus Epps (rib), linebacker Duke Riley (rib), wide receiver DeSean Jackson (hamstring), wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (foot), and cornerback Avonte Maddox (ankle).
Reinforcements coming for the secondary?
Cornerback Darius Slay returned to practice in a limited capacity on Thursday. Slay is in the concussion protocol following last Sunday's game in Pittsburgh, so he would need to be cleared by an independent neurologist before suiting up Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
Avonte Maddox, the other starting corner, practiced once again Thursday in a limited role. He has missed the past two games with an ankle injury.
Safety Will Parks is not on the injury report since he's not yet on the active roster, but his teammates expect him to be activated ahead of Sunday's matchup.
"Energy. That's the first word that comes to mind for Will Parks, man. He's a very energetic guy. Comes to work every day ready. He's a guy that's shown the ability to do it all. He's made a lot of plays for us in camp. Unfortunately, he went down with the injury. Now he's back and he's been doing that this week," safety Rodney McLeod said.
"He's a guy that you can plug in anywhere. You want him to play linebacker? OK. You want him to play centerfield? He can do that. You want him to rush the passer? He can get it done. That's what I like most about Will. I'm excited for him this week to get back out here and play in front of his hometown and make some plays for us on defense."
A Philly native, Parks is designated for return from Injured Reserve. He suffered a hamstring injury before the season opener.
No change for the wide receivers
Both DeSean Jackson (hamstring) and Alshon Jeffery (foot) were limited again on Thursday. Jackson has missed the past two games, while Jeffery is looking to make his 2020 season debut.
More changes along the offensive line?
Right tackle Lane Johnson (ankle) missed practice again on Thursday. Rookie Jack Driscoll will start if Johnson can't play.
The Eagles added starting right guard Matt Pryor to the injury report on Thursday with an illness. He did not practice. Three players – linebacker Shaun Bradley, guard Jamon Brown, and defensive tackle Hassan Ridgeway – returned after missing Wednesday's practice due to illness.
Other injuries to watch
Safety Marcus Epps and linebacker Duke Riley missed practice for a second straight day due to rib injuries. Epps' role on defense expanded with Maddox's injury, so Parks' potential return could be even more important. Riley is a starting linebacker in both the base defense and nickel subpackage. The Eagles are already down linebacker T.J. Edwards. Tight end Richard Rodgers was limited for the second day in a row with a neck injury. Everyone else was a full participant in practice.
Lane Johnson battled through Sunday's game in Pittsburgh. Head Coach Doug Pederson revealed on Monday that the All-Pro tackle received a second opinion on his surgically repaired ankle. Johnson did not practice on Wednesday and it remains to be seen whether or not he will suit up Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
"We're going to give him some rest. He's kind of in that day-to-day realm right now," Pederson said. "We're going to see where he's at later in the week, but we'll find out and see where he's at."
Rookie Jack Driscoll started for Johnson in the season opener and has filled in on a few occasions since. In all, the fourth-round pick out of Auburn has played 106 snaps on offense.
"It's tough when you don't know when you're gonna get thrown in, but you know it's always been said, 'If you stay ready, then you don't have to get ready.' So my thing is I'm preparing for the game like I'm the starter and hopefully Lane goes, and if not, no matter when it's my time, I'll be ready to play," Driscoll said.
Veteran WRs inch closer to return
DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery were limited participants on Wednesday. Jackson suffered a hamstring injury in the first half of the Week 3 game against the Bengals, while Jeffery is looking to make his 2020 season debut after last December's foot injury. The Eagles have to figure out how to incorporate Jackson and/or Jeffery back into the lineup with the emergence of Travis Fulgham as well as the developing John Hightower.
"It's a difficult thing. One we have to make sure that the player in question is healthy, right?" Pederson said. "That's why we practice during the week and we let them practice today and we see how they feel tomorrow on a Thursday. Then we see how they feel on Friday. Then we can make a decision for gameday."
• Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro went in-depth on the impending decisions at wide receiver
Who will be available in the secondary?
Good news is that cornerback Avonte Maddox practiced for the first time in a limited capacity since suffering an ankle injury against the Bengals. Cornerback Darius Slay was at practice, but did not participate. He is in the concussion protocol.
Reserve safeties Marcus Epps (rib) and K'Von Wallace (neck) missed practice on Wednesday. Will Parks is working toward his Eagles debut. He is designated for return from the Injured Reserve list.
"We activated him and the reason we activated him is because he's healthy and he is ready to go," Pederson said. "But also he has to practice and he has to get integrated back into the defense, on special teams. There's that mental side of things of how much does he retain from when he was here with us practicing back in camp. He's another one that we'll see how the week goes. If we feel like he can help us on defense, then there is a possibility of making a move. We've got to see him here in the next couple of days and then see how he feels coming out of full days' work."