UPDATE: Former NFL doctor David Chao basically says Zach Ertz’s season is over. Welp.
The bigger news is even if the Eagles win today and make the playoffs, Ertz will not play next week. The typical timeline for recovery is about four weeks. While it is possible he could play in the Super Bowl, it is more likely he misses all of this year’s postseason than returns for any of it.
ORIGINAL STORY BELOW.
Zach Ertz suffered a lacerated kidney in addition to a cracked rib during the Philadelphia Eagles’ Week 16 game against the Dallas Cowboys, according to a report from NFL Network.
The #Eagles won’t have TE Zach Ertz today, but he has not been ruled out for next week if Philly advances. Ertz is not only dealing with a cracked rib, but sources say he suffered a lacerated kidney that had him in the hospital after the game. That explains the caution this week.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 29, 2019
This news helps to explain why “back” was added to “rib” next to Ertz’s status on the injury report this week.
While it’s good to read that Ertz “has not been ruled out” for the Eagles’ first playoff game (assuming they beat the New York Giants to clinch the NFC East), one must really wonder about his status moving forward. A lacerated kidney isn’t a minor deal. Andrew Luck, Keenan Allen, and Miles Austin notably suffered the same injuries in the past and they all failed to return within the same season.
Ertz is a pretty tough guy so you can’t put anything past him ... but this news isn’t encouraging. The Eagles could be tasked with making a playoff run without their leading receiver and Carson Wentz’s favorite target.
With Ertz potentially set to miss multiple games (if not longer), it’s up to second-year tight end Dallas Goedert to really step up. Goedert is coming off a career game against Dallas in Week 16. He’ll need to put forth another big effort to help the Eagles clinch a playoff spot with a win over the Giants.
Richard Rodgers and Joshua Perkins are the two other healthy tight ends on Philly’s 53-man roster.