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 center position. Click here for more reviews.
Numbers: 844 snaps, graded 8th out of 41 centers, 9 penalties, 2 sacks allowed, 3 hits allowed, 8 hurries allowed
Review: Kelce entered the season fresh off a new long-term contract that runs through 2021. He started off the season strong but then suffered a sports hernia injury in Week 3. Kelce had surgery and worked hard in order to return for the team's Week 9 game. Kelce looked a little rusty upon his return, which was to be expected, before settling in down the stretch. Kelce was strong as a run blocker and out in space while setting up screens, but his pass protection was below average.
One significant negative: Kelce led all NFL centers in penalties with nine. He would have had 10 if one penalty wasn't declined or offsetting. No other center drew more than seven flags, and Kelce played about 200 less snaps than those players.
Numbers: 355 snaps, graded 25th out of 41 centers, 2 penalties, 0 sacks allowed, 2 hits allowed, 8 hurries allowed
Review: The Eagles signed Molk to a futures contract as the 2013 season. He became the default backup center when Julian Vandervelde went down to injury in the summer, though Molk's play in the preseason might have earned him a roster spot anyway. Molk's first action came in Week 1 against the Jaguars when he was forced to play guard. It wasn't pretty, which wasn't surprising because he's not a guard. Then Molk was forced to take over when Kelce went down in Week 3. He struggled mightily in his first NFL starts but then had an awesome game against the Giants. Molk made positive contributions as a run blocker; he was hardly limited when out in space. He did struggle in pass protection.
Review: The Batmandervelde suffered a back injury in the summer that sidelined him during most of training camp. He was waived in first cuts before rejoining the team in October after getting healthy. He never really played but it's clear the Eagles have some interest in him. Whereas Molk is a center only, Vandervelde can play both guard and center. But Molk might be the more natural center.
Review: The undrafted rookie free agent finished the preseason playing center. He's listed as a guard on the Eagles roster. Andrews spent the entire 2014 season on the practice squad.
Who Could Leave
Everyone is under contract. Molk, Vandervelde, and Andrews will be fighting for a roster spot in the summer.
Who Could Sign
Maybe an undrafted free agent.
NFL Draft Options
Can't really see the Eagles drafting a pure center. Maybe a guard who can also play center in a pinch. Chip Kelly's former Oregon Ducks center Hroniss Grasu is considered to be one of the best in this draft class.