One week after suffering a concussion at practice, Eagles linebacker Kiko Alonso remains in the NFL’s concussion rehab protocol, head coach Chip Kelly said Tuesday.
Alonso missed a fifth consecutive practice Tuesday. The team was off last Wednesday and on Monday.
NFL players suffering from a head injury must pass through several levels of mental and physical tests and be cleared by an independent NFL-approved neurologist before returning to practice.
Kelly said last week this is Alonso’s first concussion. Kelly coached Alonso at Oregon.
Also out again is safety Jerome Couplin, who underwent an appendectomy last week.
Kelly said Couplin won’t play in the preseason opener against the Colts on Sunday but is expected to return to practice next Tuesday. The Eagles are off on Monday, the day after the Colts game.
Meanwhile, Kelly said rookie cornerback JaCorey Shepherd will undergo surgery to repair his torn ACL and will be placed on injured reserve, ending his season.
Shepherd, a sixth-round pick out of Kansas, got hurt during practice Sunday at the Linc after he collided with Darren Sproles on the left sideline.
“Just one of those freak things,” Kelly said. “His foot was planted a little bit awkwardly when you see the tape. When the contact happened, it just went. You feel for him.”
Kelly said once Shepherd is able, he’ll be in meetings and film study and stay involved in the weekly gameplan as he tries to get something out of a lost season.
“He’ll be with us for the entire year,” Kelly said. “We’ll get him in on the meetings and get him up to speed in terms of where we are.
“We talked to him about hopefully next year won’t be his rookie year, this will be it. He’ll learn everything he needs to learn from a mental standpoint and then we’ll start the rehab as soon as possible.”
Following the Brandon Boykin trade, Shepherd was in the mix for the Eagles’ first-team nickel spot.
While at Kansas, Shepherd, 22, was a two-time winner of the Galen Fiss Award, given annually to a player for providing outstanding community service on campus and in the Lawrence, Kans., area.
“Just sad,” Kelly said. “First and foremost, you feel so bad for JaCorey because he worked so hard. He invested so much into this. Great young man.”