SAM BRADFORD has been cleared by an independent neurologist, the Eagles said, meaning he has completed the NFL concussion protocol, but Bradford was just a partial participant in Monday's practice, the only full-scale workout before the Thanksgiving game at Detroit.
So it seems likely Mark Sanchez will again quarterback the Birds against the Lions; offensive tackle Lane Johnson said that was his expectation. The two other concussed Eagles, running back Ryan Mathews and tight end Zach Ertz, are expected to sit, as well.
Eagles coach Chip Kelly, speaking before practice, did not give any specifics or even confirm that Bradford had been cleared, something the team announced after the workout. So we don't know whether Bradford stayed out of team drills Monday because they're easing him back in from the concussion or because of the Grade II AC strain Bradford's left shoulder suffered when he was hit by Miami's Chris McCain during the Eagles' Nov. 15 loss.
Sanchez threw three interceptions in Sunday's loss to Tampa and seemed unable to spot open receivers. He now has four picks in 64 attempts, a 6.3 interception percentage, more than double Bradford's 3.0 - 10 interceptions on 335 attempts.
Sanchez did not speak with reporters.
"Every one is an individual throw," Kelly said Monday. "I think sometimes it's the expected coverage, what he thought. And then you've got to get a chance as a quarterback coach, a coordinator, and a head coach to sit down with the film and go through all that with Mark."
Kelly said that on Sanchez' first pick Sunday, just before halftime, a pass intended for Brent Celek, "We were just squeezed on the tight end, and I think he thought he could have got it in there."
Asked what Sanchez should have done differently, Kelly said, "Not thrown it to Tampa Bay."
Asked whether Sanchez had open receivers on the play, Kelly said, "Yeah, he did."
(So, yeah, Bradford is the QB, when he is ready to play again.)
Darren Sproles confirmed he and Sanchez talked and resolved their differences over the pick-six near the end of the game, an intended screen to Sproles on which Sproles had to cut off his route, interrupted by Bucs linebacker Lavonte David. David said afterward he knew the screen was coming his way as soon as the ball was snapped.
Kelly said the Eagles hit the screen a couple of times earlier in the game and could have had a big gainer on it another time, had the ball not been thrown over Sproles.
"So I would say four times we were right, and one time he was right, and he made a great play," Kelly said. "So that's a credit to him."