THE ANSWER was the same from Nick Foles on Wednesday as it had been on Sunday. That was when Foles clasped his throwing hand behind his back and told reporters it was sore, but the hand had nothing to do with him bouncing a throw to a wide-open Jeremy Maclin during the final sequence of the Eagles' 27-20 loss to the visiting Washington Redskins.

"I don't think it affected me at all," Foles said Wednesday, after being placed on injured reserve with a hairline fracture of the second metacarpal on his right hand, the break discerned on a Monday MRI after Sunday X-rays failed to find it. "I still feel like all the throws, I feel like I could make 'em, no matter what. It had no effect."

Speculation held that Foles was injured when Redskins defensive lineman Barry Cofield slammed him face-first into the turf, just after Foles dumped the ball off to LeSean McCoy, three plays before halftime. Foles said Wednesday he isn't sure whether it was that play or the one right before that, when he scrambled from the Redskins' 12 to their 9, the gain negated by a King Dunlap holding penalty. Foles said he thought it might have been the scramble.

Regardless, the Eagles have to decide whether Foles is the likely starter for next season without seeing him in this Sunday's season finale at the Giants.

"It's really disappointing, just to not be able to go out there and compete with the guys . . . Sometimes this happens when you play sports. The hand will heal up, and it'll be better than ever when it heals," Foles said.

Has he done enough to be the 2013 starter?

"That's not my decision," Foles said. "What I can do is just keep working. I can look at what I've done, and I can improve on what I've done, and compete.

"There are some good things [he has done] and there are some bad things. There's a lot I need to work on. I look at it as, there's a ton of room for improvement. I just gotta write down, study what I need to improve on, and work on it . . . There's some film out there, stuff I can look at."

Foles said being 1-5 as the starter means "I didn't do my job. The starting quarterback, you have to put more points on the board at whatever cost to win the game."

He said he isn't thinking ahead, worrying about whether he will fit into a new coach's system, if Andy Reid is dismissed as expected.

"Right now, coach Reid's my head coach, coach [Marty] Mornhinweg's my offensive coordinator," Foles said. "I know the system, so that's all I'm worried about, is today. I love my coaches here - they've been great."

Birdseed

Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin left practice with a knee problem, no word on the severity . . . Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox and linebacker Mychal Kendricks, who suffered concussions in the loss to the Redskins, did not practice Wednesday. Andy Reid said Cox still has a headache and might be a little worse than Kendricks . . . Fullback Stan Havili (hamstring) is back at practice . . . Defensive tackle Marcus Dowtin has been added to the practice squad . . .

Former Eagles defensive end Jason Babin told a conference call with Titans reporters that the Eagles have "kind of a big socialistic system" and that they "did [deposed defensive-line coach Jim] Washburn dirty, with leaking out the false stories and the way they talked about him on the way out." Babin had 5 1/2 sacks in 11 games when he was released. Brandon Graham, no longer trapped behind Babin in the Eagles' socialistic system, has four sacks in the last four games and has been the team's best defensive lineman in that span.

On Twitter: @LesBowen
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