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Eagles RB Jay Ajayi plans to play through back fracture

Jay Ajayi, Eagles

Philadelphia Eagles running back Jay Ajayi says he has a small fracture in his back but plans to play Sunday against the Tennessee Titans.

“You just have to roll with it until it heals on its own,” Ajayi said per Tim McManus of ESPN. “You just have to protect it.”

Ajayi injured his back early in the first quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 2. Ajayi twice went into the locker room for treatment but did end up going back into the game. He finished with seven carries for 23 yards and a touchdown.

He sat out last week against the Indianapolis Colts and missed Wednesday’s practice before returning on Thursday as a full participant.

It goes without saying that playing through an injury as significant as a back fracture after just one week out is a risky proposition. There’s a chance Ajayi could make his injury worse than it already is and could have more long-term ramifications to his health.

But Ajayi is playing for a new contract, so he’s willing to take that sort of risk in order to get paid next offseason.

The Eagles still have Wendell Smallwood, Corey Clement, and Josh Adams behind Ajayi in the depth chart in case his back injury once again prevents him from playing.

The trio did pretty well without both Ajayi and Darren Sproles in the lineup against the Colts. Both Smallwood and Clement had 56 yards apiece while Adams had 30 yards in just six carries as the Eagles rushed for an impressive 152 yards.