Embed from Getty Images
By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor
The Eagles are in the playoffs and the injury report is a bit shorter after starters got some rest last week.
Noticeably absent from the report for the Eagles is any running back. Both Miles Sanders and Jordan Howard are without a designation this weeks, meaning they should play.
The Buccaneers meanwhile are hoping to win this game to get back some key players as they’ve designated Giovani Bernard, Lavonte David and Leonard Fournette as players who have returned to practice earlier this week.
DE Josh Sweat
Sweat had an illness and could be a huge loss for the Eagles defense. He is tied for the team lead in sacks and has a top-three pass rush win rate in the league. With Brandon Graham lost for most of the season, Sweat has served as the team’s top option at edge and the lack of production from Ryan Kerrigan has limited the production of depth for the team. Rookie Milton Williams has had some strong play, but the Eagles aren’t in a position where they can afford to lose Sweat.
OG Nate Herbig
Herbig is probably the Eagles fifth option at guard, but that’s really just a testament to how good the depth the Eagles have at the position is; he could be a starter on quite a few teams around the league. Herbig will give them the best chance to win this week, so I’d expect that he plays unless his mobility is extremely limited. Jack Anderson and Sua Opeta have played well in limited snaps and one would be the starter in his place if he can’t play. Beyond that, the depth gets really tested with Le’Raven Clark and UDFA Kayode Awosika (who is on the practice squad), both of which have struggled in their snaps this season.
Related Reading:Eagles-Buccaneers Preview
RB Ronald Jones II
Jones has played second-fiddle to Fournette most of the season, but took over as the starter when the former Jaguar landed on IR. He has 101 rushes for 428 yards this season, so will be yet another loss for this offense. Ke’Shawn Vaughn took over as the starter last week and is a solid runner, but isn’t a playmaker in the passing game, which should benefit the Eagles greatly. Le’Veon Bell is his backup, but there’s a reason he’s been cut by three teams in less than a year now.
WR Cyril Grayson Jr.
Without Chris Godwin and Antonio Brown, Grayson has drawn the starts the past three weeks. He only played six snaps before the injury last week, but in the previous two weeks he had nine catches for 162 yards. His absence will force the Bucs to reach down the depth chart once again to find a third receiver to play.
WR Justin Watson
Although Watson has really only appeared in one game this season as a special teamer, his absence could play a role in this game if the Bucs suffer any injuries at the receiver position. While he isn’t in line to start this one, he could be considered the next man off the bench and does have a couple hundred yards for the Bucs over the past couple of seasons.
CB Carlton Davis III
Davis is a starting corner for the Bucs and has started every game he’s been healthy for, rarely leaving the field otherwise. If he can’t go against the Eagles, or is even limited, the Eagles should have a much easier time getting Smith and Watkins open.
CB Sean Murphy-Bunting
Speaking of starting corners, Murphy-Bunting is the Bucs other starter. The Bucs had issues at the position for much of the beginning of the year, so they do at least have experience behind the pair, but stopping DeVonta Smith without your two best options is certainly going to be an issue.