Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz has been cleared to return to practice this week as the team prepares to play the Atlanta Falcons, according to a report from Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com. While Ertz has been cleared to return, it does not necessarily guarantee he will practice this week. More from ESP:
"While the Eagles do not hit during practice, Ertz is not expected to have any restrictions. Ertz being cleared does not guarantee he will practice, as head coach Chip Kelly has always been very conservative in handling players returning from injury. The doctors, however, have cleared Ertz."
Ertz underwent successful surgery to repair a core muscle injury on Aug. 14. The tight end originally suffered the injury during a training camp practice and has sat out of all football activities since then.
While it's unclear if he will practice this week and/or play against the Falcons, it's obviously at least a good sign for the team that Ertz has been cleared to return. Ertz was having a good training camp prior to being injured. He figures to be a key weapon in Philadelphia's passing attack.
Whether Ertz can play or not, the Eagles will still be relying on veteran Brent Celek to some extent due to his blocking ability. If Ertz is out, however, the team might call on second-year tight end Trey Burton to step up in the offense.
The Eagles return to practice tomorrow on Wednesday. It will be interesting to see to what extent Ertz is practicing, if at all. Keep in mind the Eagles don't play the Falcons until Monday, Sept. 14.