With Jason Peters back at his rightful place protecting the blindside of Carson Wentz, I can breath a quick sigh of relief. Just a quick one though.
Consider me shocked that the Eagles’ whole “let’s play our left tackle at right guard and our right guard at left tackle” didn’t work out. While the Birds’ correct reshuffling gives them a competent offensive line with Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Matt Pryor (no longer at left tackle) and Lane Johnson, it’s the depth that has me scared about the Eagles OL for the first time in my life.
Even with some down years, the Eagles have been successful for most of the 21st century. One constant during that has been the offensive line play, dating all the way back to the Andy Reid era. Since 2001, the Eagles have had nine Pro Bowl offensive linemen with 25 selections between them:
Jason Peters (seven selections)
Jason Kelce (three selections)
Brandon Brooks (three selections)
Lane Johnson (three selections)
Tra Thomas (three selections)
Evan Mathis (two selections)
Shawn Andrews (two selections)
Jon Runyan (one selection)
Jermane Mayberry (one selection)
That’s a lot of mashers up front!
The loss of Brooks for the season with a torn Achilles sent a ripple effect throughout the Eagles offense. Jason Peters was brought back to play right guard. Then Andre Dillard went out for the year with a torn biceps. Peters moved back to left tackle in a total “Dread it. Run from it. Destiny still arrives” Thanos move. Pryor slid back inside to guard. It’s a game of musical chairs that’s making my anxiety flare up.
I was quite worried about the prospect of Pryor lining up across from Chase Young in his first NFL start. Peters, even at his age, proved to be above-average left tackle when healthy last season, but health is always the big question with him, isn’t it? What happens when Peters goes gimp for a drive in the second quarter on Sunday? Does Pryor swing back to left tackle with Nate Herbig moving into the right guard spot? Do they keep Pryor at right guard and give Jordan Mailata his first NFL experience as the left tackle protecting the franchise quarterback while going against one of the best defensive NFL prospects in recent memory? Is anyone else sweating this out?
In the latest episode of From the Bleachers, I detail some new developments in the BGN multimedia empire (we’re doing Twitch streams!), try to make sense of my offensive line fears and offer up a new view on Shawn Andrews’ time as a Philadelphia Eagle.