Eagles defensive end Derek Barnett tore the ACL in his left knee during Sunday’s Lions game, according to coach Nick Sirianni. Barnett is likely out for the season.
“Obviously, that’s a big blow for us,” Sirianni said. “I love the way Derek Barnett comes to work every single day and plays with grittiness and toughness and nasty.
“I’m a huge Derek Barnett fan and he’ll be missed. That sucks. I hate that for him and I hate that for this team. He’ll be missed. I can’t tell you how much I think of Derek.
“With that being said, it’s part of this game. I hate that part of this game because I’ve had to live that with injuries myself when I played in college.”
DEPTH ON THE LINE
If the Eagles can absorb an injury, it would be on the defensive or offensive line. Both of those positions are deep. That depth will be tested with Barnett gone.
“Howie [Roseman] and his staff have done a great job of making us deep at the “O” and “D” line, so we have some good options there,” Sirianni said. “We have a good rotation right there.
“Tarron [Jackson] wasn’t up [active] yesterday but how quickly it can turn from you not being up for a game to you having a significant role.
“I know our guys understand that. We talk to our guys a lot about that, about their roles, how if you’re a back-up you’re one snap away from going in and that’s just the way that’s going to play out for Tarron.
“But my heart breaks for Derek … but I look forward to Tarron getting more reps, though.”
Barnett surprisingly received a two-year, $14 million contract extension in March. Barnett had 7.5 sacks the past two seasons.
Jackson was a 2021 sixth-round pick out of Coastal Carolina. He played in every game last year, making 18 tackles and one sack.
HAVING GRAHAM BACK
Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham tore his Achilles’ in Week Two last season. He returned Sunday against the Lions.
Now, with the Barnett injury, he is an extra, experienced player in that position.
- “It was huge to have Brandon Graham back, obviously,” Sirianni said. “In the scenario we’re in right now [with Barnett out], you want as much depth as you possibly can there.
- “Having his leadership — and Brandon Graham is not just a great player. He’s a great person and he’s a great teammate. You just want him on the field.
- “You want him on the field Monday through Saturday as well because naturally there’s going to be lulls and, like, oh, it’s Wednesday and the coaches were up all night working and it’s Week Six and man, we’re kinda dragging [butt] today and someone’s gotta pick us up.
- “And BG seems like he’s always the one that can do that. Just because his personality. He’s got an infectious personality. Guys gravitate towards him. That’s why he’s one of our captains. It was great to see him on that field again yesterday. He’s worked so hard to get back.”