The Eagles go into the first round of playoffs against the Chicago Bears. With Chicago having a great defense, the Eagles need all the help they can get. Below is the injury report for both teams and what contributions each player will or will not have for the game Sunday.
LB D.J. Alexander
D.J. Alexander is out with a hamstring injury. He did not play last week nor did he practice at all this week. Alexander has helped on special teams this season, but last week when he did not play, there weren’t any noticeable issues.
CB Sidney Jones
Jones is out dealing with an ongoing hamstring injury. He has not played for a few weeks. His position was taken by Maddox and Douglas. Maddox and Douglas really have improved in the secondary throughout the season. They have been okay without Jones, but it would still be great for Jones to come back to help out. He is not expected to be healthy this season.
QB Carson Wentz
Carson Wentz has been ruled out for the rest of the season because of his back. Nick Foles has become the starting quarterback, much like last season. Nick Foles has been playing very well - so well that it has been deemed as “Nick Foles magic”. He has been connecting with the team and the play calling has been working out better. Carson Wentz was not here this season mentally because he was still overcoming his injury from last season. He pushed himself too hard, which forced him to not play like himself.
WR Mike Wallace
Wallace is still recovering from his ankle injury. He participated in practice all week, however only had a light practice. He was ruled out and it was decided he was not ready to go this week. It may be better anyway because Foles is not comfortable with him since they have not had much time to play together. They can not risk any plays this week while they try to experiment.
DE Michael Bennett
Once again, Michael Bennett did not practice until Friday. He is still expected to play on Sunday, however. He is much needed for this playoff game. The Bears quarterback is very new to the playoffs. Michael Bennett and the Eagles defense will need to take advantage of that. It is crucial Bennett plays and puts pressure on their QB.
OL Isaac Seumalo
He is also questionable because of a chest injury, however he fully participated at practice on Friday so it is likely he will play. It is also essential he plays because they will need all the help they can get to hold off the Bears stellar defense and protect Foles. If he is able to play, he will likely be the starter at left guard.
CB Avonte Maddox
Avonte Maddox is dealing with an oblique injury. He had light practice all week, which is not a good sign. Maddox has gotten increasingly better each week. It is crucial for the secondary for him to play. They really need him. If he does not play, Josh Hawkins will replace him at cornerback. I’m sure you’re wondering who that is, which is why it is important for Maddox to start on Sunday.
T Jason Peters
Jason Peters will most likely play on Sunday. He will probably not play for the entire game. Vaitai is ready to step in when he needs to. It would be better for whoever is more physically capable of playing that position to play for the entirety of the game, whether that be Peters or Big V. Khalil Mack is a beast and they cannot afford Foles getting hit too many times with his rib injury. If Peters is in pain, it is best if Vaitai plays.
Preview: The Wild Card Round
LB Aaron Lynch
Lynch is doubtful with an elbow injury. He practiced a few times this week but was limited. He is the primary alternate pass rusher for the Bears. It would be great if he did not play to eliminate some of those defensive threats that are going to come the offense's way. It will give the offense a better chance at getting into the end zone.
S Eddie Jackson
He was injured in week 15, but did practice this week, so it is likely he will play Sunday. It would be another benefit for the offense if he did not play as he is the leader of the secondary and is a Pro Bowl/All-Pro selection who forced the second lowest QBR when targeted this season. It would be easier to execute deep throws, which Foles is good at.
S DeAndre Houston-Carson
He has helped on on special teams and occasionally plays as safety, however his missing practice Friday was abrupt and it could go either way if he will play or not.
DT Bilal Nichols
He is the first string defensive tackle. He has contributed to the team this year with three sacks. Anyone like that would be good for the Eagles if he not to play. The Bears defense is the third best defense in the NFL right now and it is best if the Eagles have any offensive advantage at all. Nichols is most likely going to play.
Update 1/5/19: TE Trey Burton has been added, very late, to the injury report as questionable with a groin injury. Burton is the only real receiving tight end on a roster that features only three truly impactful receivers.
Update 1/6/19: TE Trey Burton and LB Aaron Lynch have officially been ruled out.