Eagles CB Zech McPhearson Suffers Torn Achilles

The Eagles suffered a slew of injuries in last night’s preseason game, and at least one of them will be season-ending. Cornerback Zech McPhearson suffered an Achilles tear, as first reported by CBS Sports’ Cody Benjamin (Twitter link).

McPhearson was carted off the field during Philadelphia’s tie with Cleveland, and there were immediate concerns that he would miss considerable time. With an MRI having confirmed the worst-case scenario, he will be sidelined for the campaign and the Eagles will be without a key rotational member of their secondary.

The starting corner spots are accounted for regarding the NFC champions, with Darius Slay and James Bradberry on the perimeter and Avonte Maddox in the slot. McPhearson was slated to serve as the top backup to Maddox on the inside, though he had also been used on the boundary at times this offseason. The former fourth-rounder will now turn his attention to rehab ahead of the 2024 campaign, which will be the final one of his rookie contract.

McPhearson has appeared in 37 combined regular and postseason games over his first two seasons in the league, showing a mark of durability which will obviously be changed given this news. The 25-year-old had been used sparingly on defense, but he was a mainstay on special teams. His absence will thus be felt on an Eagles team which has a number of young options to choose from as a replacement.

Mario Goodrich is likely the corner to be tapped to fill in for McPhearson as the slot backup. The former spent 2022 on the Eagles’ practice squad, and signed a futures deal in February. He will have a clearer path to a roster spot with McPhearson destined for IR, though the possibility remains that Philadelphia will aim to use one of their boundary corners on the inside as opposed to leaning on Goodrich, who has yet to play a regular season NFL contest. In any event, the Eagles will be shorthanded in the secondary while they look to make a repeat Super Bowl appearance.

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