Riley Cooper returns to team drills

AP

Eagles receiver Riley Cooper has missed two preseason games and team drills at practice for two weeks, due to an apparent ankle injury.

On Sunday, Cooper returned to 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 sessions at practice.  He hopes to play in the next preseason game, on Thursday night against the Steelers.

Yeah, that’s our goal,” Cooper said Sunday, via Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com.  “I’m pretty excited. I’ve been out a while.  Two weeks.  It feels like a long time.”

Cooper’s status had been cloaked in a bit of mystery, since coach Chip Kelly initially suggested Cooper would be back soon.

With starters rarely if ever playing in the preseason finale, Cooper has only one chance to get sort-of live reps until the reps become fully live in Week One against the Jaguars.

“I didn’t want to be out and get back against Jacksonville,” Cooper said.  “I want to get a couple weeks of practice in and get the timing down with Nick [Foles].  It’s something I need, and it will be beneficial. That’s the plan.”

A year ago, the team’s plan for Cooper was unclear, in the wake of an ugly incident involving an inflammatory racial slur at a Kenny Chesney concert.  But Cooper had a strong season, signed a new contract, and has become one of the top receivers on the team.