Alright guys, I'm sure you guys are freaking out about the LT position this season, but I'm here to settle some of those guys ready to pull the trigger.
I'm basically going to bullet point this post simply because there are so many reasons why we shouldn't freak out.
Let's start off with this:
I'm not happy about the injury, at first I was freaking out a little bit. Jason Peters without a doubt is our best OLman and probably the best OLman in the NFL. Without a doubt the Eagles took a big blow but at this point it's time to minimize the impact of this injury.
Reason's why I'm not freaking out:
- Peters doesn't block the blindside, the Eagles RT is essentially the guy who's responsible for making sure Vick doesn't get raped from behind, this already takes a bit of the impact of losing Peters. This being said the Eagles do need to get a starting quality OT in here to at least sure up that side.
- Howard Mudd... If you don't know what he's capable of doing then you need to go ahead and Google his name. The guy is the best OL coach in the NFL and has always found a way to make things work in the worst of conditions. If there's anybody other than Mudd running this OL (outside of Castillo) then we're in trouble.
- We're returning 4 of 5 starters at this point. Continuity and experience in the system will help out whoever ends up starting at LT, not to mention Evan Mathis will be there as a veteran to help along the LT.
- There's plenty of talent out there who can come in for a year or two and allow the Eagles to solidify that OL. (more on this below).
- The injury happened early, the good thing is that this is a 4-6 month injury from what they're saying and while it's a major injury there have been players to make it back in 6 months which would put at at October which is 4-5 weeks into the season. I think best case scenario we have him back around week 9-10.
Who can replace Peters?
In house options:
- King Dunlap- Dunlap has slowly shaped into a good swing OT who's come in and played well over the years. I do think he's primarily a backup so the Eagles would be better off bring in somebody they plan on starting 16 games and playing at a good level. That being said we could be worse off than Dunlap *looks at Justice*
- Evan Mathis- I know he's a guard but at 6'5 and 302lb's and being super athletic I think he has the potential to move outside, he's a gamer just like Herremans. Early on in his career he was a G/T backup. This being said I'd rather bring in an OT and keep Mathis at Guard.
- Danny Watkins- This is a stretch but at 6'1 and 310 LB's and playing LT in college he could be a candidate to move to OT, this would help negate some of the run blocking talent we'll lose.
- Demetrius Bell- This is probably the best player to bring in for this situation. He has a history of injuries but he's a very reliable LT who's good at run blocking and pass blocking. He's a step down from Peters in all area's of the game but he's a very solid option who'd fit the scheme we run.
- Sam Baker- This would require a trade or the Falcons to release him. Baker isn't a great blindside protector however he's a young OT who'd fit the scheme Mudd runs. He's 6'5 301lbs and would likely come cheap since he was benched last season.
- Cordy Glenn, OT/OG, Georgia- At 6'5 345lb's and running a 4.96 40 time he showed that he's got the athleticism to play OT in the NFL (though many see him as a RT who can maul people). He'd fit what we need to do here because while he's almost 350 he's tall and carries his weight well. His strength is run blocking and that would help us out greatly at LT. (First Round)
- Johnathan Martin, OT, Stanford- Martin's my favorite rookie option for OT, he's the prototypical RT who could go anywhere from 10-25 in the draft. He'd slide right into the LT spot and would fit the system very well. (First Round)
- Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State- At 6'7 323lb's he's a big OT who has showed some decent athleticism. He'd be a fine option to come in and with a good offseason he could start right away. (Second Round)
- Zebrie Sanders, OT, FSU- Some people hate on Sanders on here but there's not doubt he's talented, he's likely a guy who'd need the offseason and then a few more weeks to get up to speed but that's what we have Dunlap for. He fits the scheme and is a capable OT. (Second Round)
- Brandon Washington, OT/OG, Miami (FL)- Washington seems like a great fit here to be honest, he's 6'4 320lbs and was All-ACC at Miami. He's the type of pick Mudd would love to work with. Not only that but he's pretty athletic from what I've seen.
I'd like to hear your input on all of this. I do think that the Eagles go lucky this happened before the draft and before all the decent FA's were locked up. This is something that can and will be overcome by the Eagles if they make the right moves. The issue going forward is if Peters can return to pre-injury form again so I think it'd be wise to bring in somebody like Demetrius Bell for a year or two and draft an OT in the first two rounds of the draft.