Eagles outside linebacker Marcus Smith will sit out two or three weeks before returning to live action, according to Smith himself (via Jeff McLane). Smith suffered a hamstring injury during Philadelphia's Thursday practice against the Ravens.
The good news for the Eagles is that Smith could be back in time for the team's season opener against the Atlanta Falcons on Monday, Sept. 14. That date is currently 3.5 weeks away.
The bad news for the team, however, is that Smith is missing valuable preseason playing time. The second-year linebacker is sorely in need of game reps after only playing 106 snaps as a rookie. Smith appeared to be making progress with his performance against the Colts last week. This is a setback for him, as defensive coordinator Bill Davis called it.
With Smith out, Davis said the Eagles will get Brad Jones some reps on the outside during the Eagles-Ravens game on Saturday evening. Jones originally started his career at outside linebacker and he's spent some time there during the offseason so he has experience playing the position. Davis also mentioned Emmanuel Acho as a guy who can play outside if he has to, but will be kept on the inside for now. Bryan Braman is more of a special teams player.
Another interesting name in the outside linebacker conversation is Vinny Curry. The 3-4 defensive end has excelled as a situational pass rusher off the bench. Now he'll get the opportunity to rush from a different position. Davis said Smith's injury will force the Eagles to "accelerate" Curry's time on the outside.
The Eagles have two very good starting outside linebacker in Brandon Graham and Connor Barwin. The depth behind them right now, however, is obviously questionable.
In other injury news:
Safety Earl Wolff missed Eagles practice for the third straight day.
Veteran wide receiver Miles Austin didn't participate in Friday's light walk-through.