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Nick Sirianni doesn’t regret decision to play Eagles starters in Week 18

The Eagles’ head coach talked about injuries to A.J. Brown, Jalen Hurts, and Reed Blankenship, and how they’ll affect the team in their wild card game on Monday.

The Eagles have just two more days before they face the Buccaneers on Monday night, and head coach Nick Sirianni took a lot of questions on Saturday about some of the notable injuries suffered last week against the Giants.

A.J. BROWN

Sirianni confirmed that A.J. Brown will miss Monday night’s Wild Card game, but praised the WR for doing everything he could to try and be available for his teammates. The head coach noted that it was always going to be a stretch for Brown to be able to play this week.

He went on to say that one of the big strengths of the team has been their pass catchers, so similar to how they handled the Dallas Goedert injury, they’ll try and fill different roles with different personnel in place of Brown. They’ll miss Brown’s contributions, but Sirianni is excited for some of the other guys to get opportunities in his place.

The head coach also said that he did not regret playing starters last week against the Giants. He explained that they didn’t know what the outcome was going to be, and they also wanted some good output on the field following their slump — although, he acknowledged that didn’t happen. Sirianni said that he’s upset that Brown got injured in that game, but at the time he made a decision he thought was best for the team, and he stands by it.

JALEN HURTS

Sirianni said that Hurts had a good practice this week when he started throwing again, but obviously he’s fighting through the finger injury. He’s excited for the QB and this opportunity.

The head coach talked about how a finger injury like that can affect someone, and he admitted that it’s everything from throwing the ball, to handling it — like with handoffs. But, Sirianni said he has a lot of confidence in Hurts and his ability to perform despite the injury.

REED BLANKENSHIP

Sirianni said that Reed Blankenship is progressing through his groin injury, and he’s got a chance to play on Monday night, but will be more of a game-time decision. They’re hopeful that he can go, but they have to wait and see how he does over the next few days.

Safety Kevin Byard spoke on Friday about Avonte Maddox moving to safety to fill in for Blankenship, and Sirianni explained that Maddox can play all of over the place. He also noted that they do different things at practice to get guys reps at all different spots, so Maddox has experience throughout the secondary.

The head coach went on to talk about how they rep guys at different positions throughout the whole team, including on Saturday when their emergency quarterback — behind Tanner McKee — will get reps, and D’Andre Swift will get some work in the slot. They can only have so many guys up on game day, so they make sure they have all the backups covered.

SYDNEY BROWN

Sirianni explained that they still have time to decide what to do with Sydney Brown’s roster spot, and will go through Saturday’s practice and the rest of the week before making that decision.

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