Eagles’ WR A.J. Brown, who worked hard in his rehab to try to make it back this week, is out for Monday night’s wild-card matchup vs. the Bucs due to his sprained knee, per sources. Brown has made enough progress that, if the Eagles advance, he could return for the divisional playoff. But he’s out Monday night.
Brown suffered a knee injury in what ended up being a meaningless game for the Eagles in Week 18. He has not been able to practice at all leading up to this week’s trip to Tampa.
This is the first game Brown will miss since the Eagles traded for him last year. His absence certainly figures to be felt; Philly’s top receiver finished the 2023 season with the fifth-most receiving yards in the NFL.
Brown did damage against the Bucs when the Eagles faced them back in Week 3. He logged 14 targets for nine receptions and 131 yards (14.6 average) in that game. Brown accounted for 47.3% of the Eagles’ total receiving yards that day.
With Brown not playing, the Eagles will have at least four healthy receivers: DeVonta Smith, Quez Watkins, Julio Jones, and Olamide Zaccheaus. Britain Covey could also mix in if he’s healthy; he’s been listed as limited on the injury report.
On paper, the Eagles still have enough talent to beat the Bucs. But no Brown is a really big deal. Jalen Hurts is already going to be challenged by playing through his finger injury. Now he’ll also be without his clear top target.
The note about Brown being able to potentially return in the divisional round is positive. But there’s no guarantee the Eagles will make it there.