By Sarah Paley
Eagles great right tackle Lane Johnson has been silent about the reason his depression caused him to miss three games last season.
But opened up to NBCSP’s Reuben Frank:
“It was an ankle injury that dated back to 2018 that led him to question whether he could continue playing.
“Mentally, a lot of what was on my mind last year was my ankle,” Johnson said after practice last Friday.
“Honestly, I was at the point where I didn’t know if I can play anymore because I couldn’t push off my left foot.”
“Johnson left the team last year after the Week 3 loss to the Cowboys and returned home to Oklahoma to deal with lingering mental health issues. He missed games against the Chiefs, Panthers and Buccaneers before rejoining the team.
The Eagles went 7-3 after he returned and were the No. 1 rushing team in the league.
Johnson first injured his left ankle in the London game against the Jaguars in October 2018. He only missed one game initially but wound up undergoing minor surgery after the season, then another more involved procedure after his 2020 season was cut short after just seven games. He underwent another procedure later that offseason.
But even after all that, when last year’s training camp started out, he still didn’t feel right.
“Pass blocking I was fine,” he said. “But run blocking?
“I felt like earlier in my career I was a 747 and now I was a twin-engine piece of bleep.”