In a press conference from the NFL Combine on Wednesday, March 1, head coach Doug Pederson confirmed that Sproles will return to the Eagles in 2017. Sproles entered last season as the club's change-of-pace back but became Pederson's most-trusted option in the ground game as the year wore on, as evidenced by him earning 45 percent of the offensive snaps, versus 25 percent for Ryan Mathews (neck). With the oft-injured Mathews perhaps on the way out of Philadelphia, the team will look to bring in additional talent to the backfield via the draft or free agency. However, with bigger needs elsewhere on the roster, the Eagles could end up using Wendell Smallwood (knee) as their primary ball carrier in the upcoming campaign. Either way, Sproles will probably be slotted in the same scatback role that he occupied at the beginning of this past season. He finished 2016 with 438 yards on 94 carries and added 427 more yards on 52 receptions. He also scored two touchdowns each on the ground and through the air.
Sproles rushed for 32 yards on nine carries and added four yards on three catches in Sunday's win over the Cowboys. Who said that you can't teach an old dog new tricks? Sproles ended the 2016 season at 33 years old and setting a new career mark in rushing attempts. Often the scatback throughout his career, injuries, ineffectiveness and inexperience in Philadelphia's backfield led to Sproles taking the top job down the stretch. It sets up an interesting predicament in Philadelphia this offseason. On one hand, the Eagles can walk away from the $4 million owed to Sproles in 2017 with no cap penalty. On the other, the team would enter the season with little experience behind the oft-injured Ryan Mathews.
Sproles (concussion) compiled 40 yards and scored a touchdown on seven rushes, while securing both of his targets for 23 yards in Thursday's 24-19 win over the Giants. Sproles opened the scoring with a 25-yard scamper in the first quarter, only his second touchdown of the season, both of which have come in the last three games he's been active for. Sproles saw limited work despite backfield mate Ryan Mathews' early exit from the contest with a stinger, but could be in line for a much bigger share of the tailback touches in Week 17 against the Cowboys if the latter's injury lingers.
Sproles (concussion) wasn't listed on the Eagles' final injury report in advance of Thursday's game versus the Giants, the team's official site reports. After a concussion sidelined him Sunday in Baltimore, Sproles had no trouble logging every practice rep this week. With his return imminent, he returns to a barren backfield behind Ryan Mathews due to Wendell Smallwood (knee) and Kenjon Barner (hamstring) landing on injured reserve over the last week and a half. Expect Sproles to handle a change-of-pace role, at the very least, Thursday.
Sproles (concussion) practiced in full Tuesday. No representative of the Eagles' organization has confirmed whether Sproles has emerged from the concussion protocol. However, full designations on back-to-back injury reports is as good of a sign as any that his concussion is behind him. Expect clarification on Sproles' situation prior to Thursday's game against the Giants. If active, he should jump into his normal change-of-pace role with Kenjon Barner (hamstring) joining Wendell Smallwood (knee) on the sideline.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
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