September 09, 2007

L.J. Smith Not Likely to Play

The uncertain condition of L.J. Smith's highly publicized groin became a little more uncertain yesterday.

After the Eagles went through their walk-through in preparation for today's season opener against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field, an e-mail was sent out by the team saying that Smith's condition on the injury report had been downgraded from probable (a 75 percent chance that he would play) to questionable.

That means there is only a 50-50 chance that Smith will play today, which is far more in line with what the veteran tight end was saying after practice Friday. Smith did participate in yesterday's walk-through, which is typically a 30-minute half-speed refresher of the game plan.

Smith, a potential free agent after this season, did not play in the preseason after suffering a groin injury early in training camp. He had sat out the first few days of contact at Lehigh University because he was recovering from May 31 surgery to repair a sports hernia.

Eagles coach Andy Reid and Smith both have said the groin injury was unrelated to the sports hernia, but even if that is the case, it's obvious that the tight end is not entirely healthy as the team approaches the starting line.

If Smith is unable to go today, veteran Matt Schobel will be the starter at tight end and rookie Brent Celek, who had an impressive preseason, is likely to see quite a bit of playing time.


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