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September 01, 2019

Eagles DT Fletcher Cox should be ready to play Week 1

When they trimmed their roster to 53 players on Saturday, the Philadelphia Eagles only kept four defensive tackles, and they cut a legitimate NFL defensive tackle in Treyvon Hester. Because the Eagles normally go into games with four active defensive tackles, one might conclude that Fletcher Cox is ready to go for Week 1.

For those of you just now beginning to gear up for the season, Cox injured his foot in the Eagles' playoff loss to the Saints, and had offseason surgery to repair it. He did not participate at all in training camp practices or any of the four preseason games.

When asked if the release of Hester was a vote of confidence that Cox is ready to go for Week 1, Howie Roseman acknowledged, "Yes, I think that would be fair."

Last Sunday, Doug Pederson was also asked directly if Cox would be ready for Week 1, and while I'm not a CIA operative who can determine whether someone is telling the truth just on body language, Pederson didn't exactly sell it with conviction.

"I'm confident that he'll be there," Pederson said last Sunday. "Listen, everybody is different, but I'm confident, and our goal is to have everybody ready."

A few days later, probed again on Cox, Pederson added, "He has been working. He's still getting his workouts in and, he's been going through all our walk-throughs and getting the mental side of it and so it leads me to believe that he'll be ready. Fletcher is a guy that knows how to prepare and knows how to get himself ready, and I would have no concern if that was the case."

The Eagles' actions at cutdowns, however, speak louder than words.

Another position where one might jump to a similar conclusion on a player questionable for Week 1 is at cornerback, with Ronald Darby, who tore his ACL in November last year. The Eagles only kept five corners, one of whom we already know won't be ready for Week 1, in Cre'Von LeBlanc. By only keeping four other corners (and barring the acquisition of another corner), that is a signal that Darby will also be ready to play Week 1.

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