January 08, 2022
Heading into Week 18, the Philadelphia Eagles remain a relatively healthy team in terms of actual injuries, though they do have double-digit players on their COVID list. They'll have a chance to rest their starters this weekend with a playoff berth already clinched.
The Dallas Cowboys are even healthier, as they have had incredible injury luck this season, with only one important player on injured reserve.
Here are the Eagles' and Cowboys' inactives, with analysis.
As you can see from the Eagles' inactives, they are resting starters, and couldn't care less if they win this game.
• DE Brandon Graham (IR): Graham's season is over with a ruptured Achilles. On the field, Graham was arguably the Eagles' best defensive player in 2020. It's clear since his loss that the Eagles miss his contributions as a pass rusher and run stopper, and the Eagles have not been able to adequately replace him. Off the field, Graham has unlimited energy and positivity, and he is a player that you just want to have around if you're a head coach in the NFL.
• RG Brandon Brooks (IR): Brooks suffered a pectoral injury against the 49ers. It's "only" a pec strain, as opposed to a tear, so while he'll likely miss time (about 8 weeks, per Lane Johnson) on injured reserve, it was initially not thought to be a season-ending injury. Brooks got hurt Week 2, so Week 12 was 10 weeks. Nick Sirianni has been repeatedly asked about Brooks' possible return, but no useful information has been given.
• LG Isaac Seumalo (IR): Seumalo was carted off the field in the Eagles' loss to the Cowboys. His season is over after having surgery for a Lisfranc injury.
• OL Jack Driscoll (IR): Driscoll's season is over after suffering a high ankle sprain against the Giants. Driscoll showed promise as a rookie in 2020, and he was a valuable player for the Eagles in 2021, initially filling in for Lane Johnson at RT, and later at RG in relief of Brandon Brooks. He played 512 snaps for the Eagles in 2021, and has looked like a capable starter, but his inability to stay on the field is concerning.
• LB Davion Taylor (IR): Taylor started six games for the Eagles. He had his best game as a pro in Denver Week 10, when he forced a pair of fumbles against the Broncos, one of which was returned for a touchdown by Darius Slay. Taylor was drafted as a raw prospect out of Colorado during the 2020 NFL Draft, and while he still has a ways to go as a professional linebacker, he has made positive strides during the 2021 season. He has been replaced in the lineup by Alex Singleton, and Nick Sirianni recently revealed that his season is over.
As noted above, the Eagles have a slew of players (11 total) on their COVID list, all of whom are either starters or at least typically get a healthy number of snaps. The Eagles won't be in a rush to bring those guys back up to the active roster before Sunday.
The Cowboys will play some starters, based on their inactives, but for how long?
Cowboys inactives: Trevon Diggs, Will Grier, Tony Pollard, Simi Fehoko, Quinton Bohanna.— David Helman (@HelmanDC) January 8, 2022
Jayron Kearse is off the roster & on the COVID list. Donovan Wilson joined the team separately in Philadelphia today and is active for this game.
• WR Michael Gallup (IR): Gallup tore his ACL in the Cowboys' loss to the Cardinals. He had missed time earlier this season as well. In 9 games, Gallup had 35 catches for 445 yards and 2 TDs. He is a legitimate play-making deep threat in the Cowboys' offense.
As of Thursday, the Cowboys have nine players on their COVID list, headlined by LT Tyron Smith and rookie phenom LB Micah Parsons:
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