Brooks returns to Eagles practice; Pederson says he'll start against Ravens
Right guard Brandon Brooks, who has missed two of the last three Eagles games after becoming violently ill the morning of the game, practiced Wednesday, and coach Doug Pederson said the plan is for Brooks to start Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
Pederson was intentionally vague about Brooks' illness. He seemed to express confidence that Brooks wouldn't have another stomach episode, but acknowledged that the team's medical staff still doesn't know the exact nature of the offensive lineman's problem.
"We're still kind of diving into the bottom of it,'' he said. "It's in the hands of our medical staff. They're dealing with it.''
Brooks, who signed a five-year, $40 million, free-agent contract with the Eagles in March that included $17 million in guaranteed money, made 44 starts for the Houston Texans the previous three years.
But he missed a game in each of the last two seasons with the Texans because of a game-day illness similar to the one that has struck him here two of the last three weeks.
Asked Wednesday whether he had any reason to believe this wouldn't happen again to Brooks, Pederson said, "We talked again yesterday. The only thing I know is we're helping him and getting him ready. I have full confidence in him that he'll be ready.
"Now that we're on the right track, hopefully it won't happen again.''
Birdseed: Allen Barbre, who reinjured his hamstring Sunday against Washington, didn't practice Wednesday, but Pederson said he's "on track'' to start at right tackle Sunday against the Ravens. "I'm expecting him to play,'' Pederson said. "Right now, we're going to give Isaac (Seumalo) all those reps over there and see where he's at. But Allen's a veteran guy who's played there. He doesn't necessarily need a ton of reps to get ready to go." If Barbre is able to play, Stefen Wisniewski will continue to start at left guard. ... WR Jordan Matthews was "a little sore in the ankle'' and didn't practice. Pederson said he will be fine for the game. ... Running back Darren Sproles still is going through the concussion protocol.