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Eagles Position Review: Offensive tackle Lane Johnson takes a big step forward

A position by position breakdown of the Eagles 2014 roster.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The 2015 NFL offseason has begun for the Philadelphia Eagles, which means Chip Kelly and his staff will spend the next couple of weeks evaluating the 2014 roster. While the team was able to achieve 10-6 record, they fell short of making the playoff, and there are still many ways the Eagles roster could be improved upon. By the time NFL free agency starts on March 10, the Eagles will have a good idea of which players they'll want to bring back for the 2014 season. Today we'll continue this offseason review series by looking at the offensive tackle position. Click here for more reviews.

The Players


Numbers: 1168 snaps, THE best graded OT by PFF out of 84, 8 penalties, 4 sacks allowed, 4 hits allowed, 17 hurries allowed

Review: The man they call The Franchise was the only Eagles starting offensive lineman to start and play all 16 games. Due to a myriad of offensive line injuries, the pressure was on Peters to perform and he did just that. Pro Football Focus ranked Peters as the best offensive tackle in the league in 2014. He finished with the first best run blocking grade and second best pass protection mark. Peters brought his A-game week in and week out. The Bodyguard earned extra favor from the fans when he stuck up for Nick Foles during Philadelphia's Week 3 game against Washington. It was rare form to see Peters so emotional in the way he charged at Chris Baker. Peters is very talented and his teammates have a lot of respect for him. Like I said, he's The Franchise.

If there was one criticism of Peters to be written, it was that his eight penalties were a little much. He only had four in 2013.


Numbers: 909 snaps, 13th best graded OT by PFF out of 84 (2nd best RT), 7 penalties, 1 sack allowed, 2 hits allowed, 23 hurries allowed

Review: Johnson obviously got off to a bad start by being suspended for the first four games of the season. What made matters even worse was that a number of Eagles offensive linemen suffered injuries during Johnson's absence. The second year offensive tackle's mistake could have been more costly if the Eagles didn't manage to go 3-1 without him.

Once Johnson returned, however, he played really well. For what it's worth, PFF had him ranked as the second best right tackle in all the league. He might have been ranked first had he not missed the first four games. Johnson's run blocking was good as ever. The team only averaged 3.61 yards per carry in four games without him. In the 12 games played after his return, the Eagles ran the ball for an average gain of 4.46 yards.

Johnson also showed improvement in pass protection as a sophomore. In his rookie season, Johnson allowed 10 sacks, eight hits, and 39 hurries. Compare that to marks of one sack, two hits, and 23 hurries in 2014. It looks like the Eagles made the right call by taking Johnson at No. 4 overall in the 2013 NFL Draft.

Like Peters, a little more discipline could have benefited Johnson. His seven penalties would have been nine if two hadn't been declined or offsetting.


Numbers: 212 snaps, 105th graded OT by PFF out of 142, 2 penalties, 1 sack allowed, 4 hits allowed, 8 hurries allowed

Review: Gardner played most of his snaps at guard in 2014 but he did see some work at right tackle when Johnson was out. He wasn't very good on the outside.


Review: Only played 33 snaps before suffering a season-ending high-ankle injury. Barbre was starting in place of Johnson before going down.

Who Could Leave

No one. Everyone is still under contract.

Who Could Sign

The Eagles certainly won't be looking for a starter in free agency. They could look to add a depth tackle to compete for a job with Barbre.

NFL Draft Options

Peters recently turned 33 so the Eagles could afford to draft a tackle at some point. Oregon's Jake Fisher could be the next #DuckBias draft pick. Sean Hickey of Syracuse, who spoke to us on BGN Radio, could be a target in later rounds.

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