Philadelphia Eagles offensive tackle Lane Johnson is delaying surgery for a torn adductor to maintain his availability for the 2022 NFL playoffs, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
Rapoport reported the four-time Pro Bowler will rehab in the meantime.
At 13-2, the Eagles have clinched a postseason berth, so their stakes in the final two weeks are somewhat lower compared to other contenders.
They can secure an NFC East title with a win over the New Orleans Saints or the Dallas Cowboys failing to beat the Tennessee Titans. A victory would also guarantee them the No. 1 seed in the NFC and a bye in the opening round of the playoffs.
Having that extra week off could be very important for Johnson's recovery.
The 32-year-old has made 15 starts in 2022 and was one of eight Eagles players named to the NFC Pro Bowl team.
Thanks in part to Johnson, Philadelphia ranks eighth in adjusted line yards and 19th in adjusted sack rate, per Football Outsiders. The latter is somewhat attributable to having a mobile quarterback with Jalen Hurts. The Chicago Bears have a similarly mobile quarterback Justin Fields and rank 32nd in adjusted sack rate.
When news of Johnson's injury first surfaced, you could understand why fans began to panic. Winning a Super Bowl without a starting offensive tackle isn't impossible, but it would be far more difficult.
Now, Philly's outlook is more promising. Even if Johnson isn't at 100 percent when the playoffs roll around, getting him at 70 or 80 percent is probably better than having to lean on Jack Driscoll as the replacement starter.