PHILADELPHIA — Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson is expected to miss Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings but is hoping to play the following week against the Dallas Cowboys, according to league sources.
Jackson is targeting a return Week 7 against Dallas but that’s not a slam dunk. The current return window is believed to be between Week 7 and Week 9 against the Chicago Bears as he continues to heal from an abdominal strain suffered Week 2 against the Atlanta Falcons.
“DeSean, we’re going to progress him this week, get him on the field, see what he can do from a rehab standpoint only, see where he’s at, and go from there,” coach Doug Pederson said Wednesday.
“I would think with a guy like DeSean, he’s a track guy, he’s a runner, obviously he’s got to have a level of comfort with that injury, all the stopping and starting and things of that nature. It’s really until I think he gets to that point that we make a decision.”
Jackson did not practice Wednesday.
The original hope was that Jackson would be out two weeks, but upon further consultation he opted to allow the injury to heal longer. Even so, there’s an expectation that he’ll have to play through pain when he does return.
The Eagles acquired the 32-year-old Jackson from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in March to give Carson Wentz a deep threat. The two connected for a pair of 50-yard touchdowns in the opener against the Washington Redskins. Predictably, the Eagles have become less explosive in his absence. Philadelphia currently ranks 22nd in pass plays of 20-plus yards (14).
“We still feel we have the guys that are capable, without a doubt,” Wentz said of generating big plays downfield. “Obviously DeSean is his own type of player in that regard, but we still feel that we’re capable of doing that and we’ll still attack downfield when it’s there.”