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Sidney Jones injury update: Eagles rookie cornerback reportedly “not close” to practicing


NFL: Philadelphia Eagles-Minicamp Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time all season, Eagles rookie cornerback Sidney Jones is eligible to practice this week.

It doesn’t sound like that’ll be happening, though. Les Bowen of the Daily News has an update on Philadelphia’s second-round pick from the 2017 NFL Draft.

Coach Doug Pederson has stressed that the Eagles won’t rush Jones’ recovery, and a source close to the situation said last week that Jones remained “not close” to practicing. The Eagles have six weeks from this week to activate him from NFI. Once he is activated, they have three weeks to add him to the roster. If that time passes without activation, he reverts to injured reserve and his season is over. The league source said Sunday that Jones probably is several weeks away from getting back the “explosion” a cornerback needs. The source said he thinks December might be a more reasonable time to expect Jones to be fully functional, which would push the NFI window to its maximum and would raise the possibility that Jones won’t play at all this year. Especially if the defense continues to function as well as it has during the team’s 5-1 start.

Jones is obviously still recovering from an Achilles injury that occurred earlier this year in February. There’s never been a clear timeline for his return. This latest report seems to question if Jones will play at all in 2017.

The very latest the Eagles can have Jones start practicing is the last week of November. From there, they’ll need to activate him to the 53-man roster within 21 days of his first practice or else he’ll be out for the season. This means the latest he could return is around the week of December 18.

Adding a healthy Jones to the Eagles’ secondary is a nice thought. It remains to be seen just how much he can realistically contribute as a rookie, though. It’s one thing to be in the meeting rooms and travel with the team like Jones has done. It’s another thing to actually be taking the physical repetitions in practice.

It must be noted there is an advantage for the Eagles by having Jones sit out the entire season. Instead of becoming an unrestricted free agent at the end of his rookie contract, Jones will instead be restricted. This means the Eagles will have more team control over his contract.

There hasn’t been a lot of clarity on the Jones situation. The rookie corner has declined to talk to reporters and none of the Eagles’ coaches or executives have offered any kind of timeline for return.

The best we have is this update from the Daily News. And according to them, it sounds like Jones isn’t super close. More patience required.

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