PHILADELPHIA — Carson Wentz and Mike Trout didn’t talk much about the Eagles during their recent hunting trip in North Dakota.
They also didn’t talk about the Phillies.
The two have been friends for three years, since the Eagles took Wentz with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 draft. Trout, an Eagles season-ticket holder, took Wentz hunting for ducks and geese in South Jersey during the 2016 Christmas holidays.
Despite pleas from local fans, Wentz made no effort to try to convince Trout, a two-time American League Most Valuable Player from Millville, to leave the Los Angeles Angels for the Phils.
“Mike and I, when we go hunting, we just hang out,” Wentz said Wednesday at the NovaCare Complex. “We don’t talk too much baseball or football. We keep it strictly hunting, just hanging out and having a good time. That’s our time to get away from sports and everything.”
A number of Eagles used the week off to relax and get rejuvenated.
Rookie tight end Dallas Goedert went home to South Dakota. He watched his high school alma mater, Britton-Hecia in Britton, suffer a 12-8 loss to Howard in the semifinals of the state nine-man playoffs.
His college team fared better the next day. He watched South Dakota State dominate Missouri State 59-7.
“It was a shame Britton lost because we were going for our second straight state title,” Goedert said. “It felt good to get away, but it’s also good to be back. I’m excited for the rest of the season.”
The Eagles (4-4) enter Sunday’s game against Dallas (3-5) in second place in the NFC East behind Washington (5-3). Of their eight remaining games, five are against divisional opponents, including two apiece against the Cowboys and Redskins.
Considering the status of the rest of the NFC — the Los Angles Rams (8-1), New Orleans (7-1), Carolina (6-2), Chicago (5-3) and Minnesota (5-3-1) have better records — winning the division would seem to be the best route to the playoffs for the Eagles.
“A win on Sunday would put us 2-0 in the division and really set the tone for us,” Eagles tackle Jason Peters said. “We’ve got to win this division, get to the playoffs and go from there. That’s the goal, and I don’t want nothing less.”
The Eagles will have some extra players on hand for Sunday.
New wide receiver Golden Tate, acquired in a trade with Detroit last week, will play against the Cowboys. Running back Darren Sproles is also expected to return after missing the last seven games with a strained hamstring.
“Having those two guys out there can only help us,” Eagles tight end Zach Ertz said. “Darren and Golden are both dynamic, explosive players. You look at our offense and it has the potential to be really good.”
The Eagles are still dealing with some injuries, however.
Right tackle Lane Johnson is expected to play Sunday, but how long he’ll be able to last with a sprained medial collateral ligament in his knee and a sprained ankle is debatable. Peters is playing with a torn biceps tendon.
Defensively, cornerbacks Jalen Mills (foot) and Sidney Jones (hamstring) will not play against the Cowboys. Cre’Von LeBlanc, who was claimed off waivers from Detroit Tuesday, could get some snaps in the secondary.
Still, their expectations haven’t changed.
“(The division) is kind of right there for this football team to go attack and try to capture,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said. “I remind them each and every day of that.”