• December 10, 2022

2014 Outlook: Offensive Line

JasonPeters21Jason Peters

After watching King Dunlap and Demetress Bell at the left tackle spot in 2012, Jason Peters was a sight for sore eyes, even if he wasn’t quite the player he was several years ago.

Peters brought stability back to the position, but he didn’t quite dominate like he did back in 2011. But by no means was Peters a weakness, and his form last year was still much better than the majority of left tackles in the game.

Evan Mathis

Mathis comes off of his strongest season yet, having been named to the All-Pro team and the Pro Bowl.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Mathis during his first two seasons with the team, and I didn’t see him as anything more than a serviceable starter in the past. But this year its become clear to me that while Mathis may not be a dominating, road-grading guard, he’s a technically sound player that doesn’t make many makes, and fits what the Eagles need him to do perfectly.

Mathis compliments Jason Peters and Jason Kelce extremely well.

Jason Kelce

Kelce bounced back from his season-ending 2012 injury and performed at a high level in 2013. He’s not the biggest center in the game, but he’s still exceptionally strong and is also a very smart player. The stability of the offensive line was greatly improved with Kelce around for 16 games.

The only knock I have on Kelce is that he had more than his fair share of botched snaps this year, occasionally resulting in a turnover for the Eagles. Perhaps he just needed some time to adjust to the pace that the new offense required of him, but its a problem he can work on for next year.

Kelce’s best effort came in the game against the Lions, where he played a big role in helping the offensive line dominate against the dominant Detroit combo of Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley.

Todd Herremans

Herremans did not get off to a good start this year. He struggled throughout the first month of the season, missing blocks and getting pushed around in the pass rush. At one point, there was talk of Herremans getting benched in favor of Alan Barbre.

However, the dependable veteran was able to pick himself up and finished the year strong. It took some time, but Herremans eventually readjusted himself to the guard position and became the sturdy presence that the team needed him to be.

Moving forward, however, there’s reason to wonder just how much the former 2005 draft pick has left in the tank. Herremans is a guy with a lot of miles on him, and his body has a great deal of wear-and-tear.

The Eagles can plan on Herremans being their starter for another year, but they’ve also got to think about getting a replacement in line for the years to come.

Lane Johnson

The top draft pick had his ups and downs, but overall did a good job holding down the right tackle position all year.

Every now and then, Johnson had a game where he’d be flagged for a couple of bad penalties, or get pushed around in pass protection.

But just compare his body work in his first year to the last offensive lineman that the Eagles drafted in the first round, Danny Watkins, and you really have to feel good about what Johnson did.

Watkins couldn’t win a job that was handed to him in Training Camp during his rookie year, and proved to be soft mentally and spent the majority of his two years in Philadelphia on the inactive list when gameday came around.

Johnson showed plenty of potential in his first year, and he while he went through some growing pains in 2013, he’s got a great group of veterans around him and a solid coaching staff that will help him harness his potential in 2014.

Alan Barbre

Barbre proved to be a versatile backup, capable of playing almost any of the line positions in a pinch.

He never made a start, but several times was called upon to replace Jason Peters and the unit didn’t miss a beat. His most memorable effort came against the Green Bay Packers, where he relieved an injured Peters for almost the entire game.

He’s a valuable sixth-man for the offensive line, and its a real luxury to have a starting-caliber backup waiting in the wings at all times.

Julian Vandervelde

Won the backup center job in Training Camp, and was never pressed into action.

Dennis Kelly

Preseason injury prevented Kelly from seeing the field although he was on the active roster for the entire year.

Without any looks at him in live action, its impossible to determine whether or not Kelly improved from what he was in 2012.

Matt Tobin

Raw talent won him a job in the preseason. He played primarily on special teams, and stayed active over Dennis Kelly even when Kelly was healthy.

Final Thoughts/Possible Changes

The Eagles got a great year out of their offensive line in 2013.

All five starters started every game, and when a line is healthy for a full season, they’re going to jell together and get stronger as the year goes on.

Moving forward, the Eagles don’t have any pressing needs at these positions, but it would be nice if they could continue to build up their depth. Having Alan Barbre around is a tremendous luxury in itself, but the Eagles don’t have any proven options beyond him. Matt Tobin, Dennis Kelly, and Julian Vandervelde all have shown at least a little potential in the past, but none of those three strike me as starting caliber players.

With the exception of Danny Watkins, Howie Roseman has done a pretty good job at finding quality contributors from free agency and the late rounds of the draft to add to his offensive line. Evan Mathis and Barbre were both additions off of the NFL’s veteran scrap heap. Jason Kelce was a sixth-round pick in 2011. Roseman seems to have a pretty decent idea of what to look for in a quality offensive lineman, and hopefully he can add at least one more quality piece to the reserves to improve the depth and help plan for the future when older guys like Peters and Herremans will need to replaced in the coming years.

Denny Basens

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andrew p
andrew p
February 11, 2014 10:26 am

Breaking news
Joe Banner is out in Cleveland!!!!

gloomysmitty
gloomysmitty
February 11, 2014 10:31 am

Maybe the birds will a chance at josh Gordon now that banner and co.. Are out and the browns look like they are cleaning house.

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 10:37 am
Reply to  gloomysmitty

Justthe opposite Gloomy,
This mean the Browns will most likely extend their biggest Playmaker in WR Josh Gordon
It was Banner who wanted Gordon gone or any other Players with baggage as been his mode of operandi since he’s been in Football

bugsyhawk
bugsyhawk
February 11, 2014 10:51 am
Reply to  paulman

That would be the fastest way for Farmer to get fired too trading away a legit superstar.

Eaglehaslanded
Eaglehaslanded
February 11, 2014 12:21 pm
Reply to  bugsyhawk

Seriously!

mhenski
mhenski
February 11, 2014 10:51 am
Reply to  gloomysmitty

jesus christ gloomy josh gordon isnt going anywhere. teams dont get rid of young superstars bro.

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 10:34 am

yes, reports are he’s out witinh 2 months
Browns fired GM Mike Lombardi effective immediately and replaced him with
Ray Farmer for this Critical time for Scouting,Draft,Free_agency
Chances are that Owner Jimmy Haslam, who is facing multiple Federal Felony Charges for “Price Scheming” & “Extortion” will lose his Ownership of the Browns within the next Year or so…. What a mess they have in Cleveland…

eagles0superbowls
eagles0superbowls
February 11, 2014 10:40 am

remove Mike Vick then all of sudden the OL can block and WR are open —
AMAZING

mhenski
mhenski
February 11, 2014 10:54 am

the WR and OL starting performing better because Mike is an outstanding OL and QB coach. HAaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

pheags88
pheags88
February 11, 2014 11:06 am

How about Joe Haden? The team may not have a choice when it comes to his situation. Sure they dont want to let him go but hits Haden choice to sign there. There is no chance this dude signs an extension to stay in that circus for the rest of his career. He will never see the playoffs or anything close to a possible championship. He has already complained to the media that he is sick of losing there…he is a stud so he will get paid anywhere he wants.

They will lose him for nothing. And keeping him around for his last year or a franchise tag year wont get them anywhere either. They will still be a 5 win team.

Phil Taylor is also another guy whose contract is up after next year.

Just saying they will lose these guys for nothing…Gordon is still under contract for years to come so he is a different story.

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 11, 2014 10:02 pm
Reply to  pheags88

Josh Gordon has 2 more years on his contract before he becomes a Unrestricted free agent in 2016.

This year he makes $1,542,418, in 2015, he makes $581,209 .
They will have to try to extend him, but the question will be does HE want to, when it’s obvious that team isn’t going anywhere?

There is a threat he may hold out if not paid as one of the top 3 receivers in the league; Which they may not be able to do considering their cap, having to soon re-sign Joe Thomas, Joe Haden, possible franchise figure for TJ Ward, Jordan Cameron, and their #1 Choice QB in 2014, coming out of his rookie Contract……

That’s why Banner wanted to try to get a draft pick for him – knowing he more than likely wouldn’t want to resign, and lose him with no compensation. It’s still something realistically they have to deal with.

The Eagles could make an offer but it would have to involve a conditional future #1. Although we know they generally stay away from players with questionable past, Lurie, also taken a chance on controversial players like Vick, TO, Damarius Johnson, and Bryce Brown. I still feel I would be the best option to play opposite DeSean.

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 11, 2014 10:04 pm
Reply to  gmcliff

He would be the best option……to play opposite DeSean.

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 11:19 am

Browns are making some good Changes at the Right Time
Do note that the AFC North is going thru a Transition where the Steelers/Ravens are re-tooling their Rosters, have serious Cap issues and have a lot of older Players that need replacing .. The Ravens started that process last year and the Steelers will probably do so this Year so if there is a time to rebuild and retool and make big time changes in the AFC North
It’s right now ….
Browns can get a QB, RB and another WR.. they can be a 7-8 win Team in the AFC North right now
Watch for Johnny Football to come and save the day for all of Cleveland and earn his Likeness to replace LeBron’s on Downtown Bldgs and over at the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame…
Cleveland Rock’s …

greenfan
greenfan
February 11, 2014 3:01 pm
Reply to  paulman

Right next to the Brady Quinn statue.

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 11, 2014 10:18 pm
Reply to  paulman

Manziel will be a bust and you know it…They better take a shot at Bridgewater, or Bortles if he’s there….

gloomysmitty
gloomysmitty
February 11, 2014 1:15 pm

I like the browns defense they have been good for the past couple of years it’s there offense that holds them back Bryce brown could be 1200 to 1400yd back if given the chance to start. Send him to the browns for a 4th rd pick.

eagles0superbowls
eagles0superbowls
February 11, 2014 1:26 pm
Reply to  gloomysmitty

the team looked good with Brian Hoyer as their QB

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 2:47 pm
Reply to  gloomysmitty

I’ve been saying that since last Year Gloomy..
RB Brown would be a Perfect Fit for them.. they have a ton a Draft Picks
would help both Teams out..

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 11, 2014 10:23 pm
Reply to  gloomysmitty

That makes him worth more than a 4th Round Pick then Smitty.

More like nothing lower than a 3rd Round Pick.

eagles0superbowls
eagles0superbowls
February 11, 2014 3:32 pm

2013 Philadelphia was second in the NFL with 27.6 points per game behind only Denver (37.9 ppg)
Lets keep it rolling, more points more points more points –
Draft offense in the first round again!
Draft offense in the second round again!
more points more points more points

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 3:39 pm

Please note that the Broncos also lost in the most improtant Game of their Season 43-8 .. Just Sayin…
I believe that Chip Kelly’s Offense is dyanmic enough that with a Good OL and average skill Players can be very effective and score points..
I also believe as most do on here, that the Eagles Defense currently is about 4-5 Players away from being a legitimate Championship Team
Since Eagles Offense is led by still young Players in Foles,McCoy,D-Jax,Ertz,Cooper, Maclin that the side of the Ball to Focus on with high Draft Picks and Top NFL Prospects is on the Defense…

paulman
paulman
February 11, 2014 4:26 pm

****New Paulman Trade/Rumor Alert ****

Eagles Trade Their #22 Pick, QB Matt Barkley & RB Bryce Brown to the
Cleveland Browns for their #4 Overall PIck and a 5th Round Pick (#132nd Overall)

Eagles at #4 – Select OT Greg Robinson from Auburn (6-5 320lbs)

After this Move, Eagles then annouce a Trade with the Atlanta Falcons
and send LT Jason Peters & DE Brandon Graham to the Atlanta Falcons for their 2nd Round Pick in 2014 (#38th Pick) & their 5th Rd Pick in 2014 (#134 Overall) and 3rd Round Pick in 2015

Greg Robinson becomes Day 1 Starter at LT for the next 8-10 Years making 4-5 Pro-Bowls,during his Time in Philly

With the 38th Overall Pick in 2014 – the Eagles Select OLB Kyle Van Noy
of Utah at 6-3 245lbs

With These Deals, the Eagles got their LT of the Future, their OLB of the Future and shed Peters,Graham,Barkley off their Payroll (about $15 Million off the Books) and added more Mid-round Picks….

NFL Channel hails Paulman as the “GM of the Year”…

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 11, 2014 10:15 pm
Reply to  paulman

I like it Paul, if they could pull that off….

But I would trade down afterwards, and draft Khalil Mack, or trade down and get multiple 2nd, and 3rd Round picks, and draft Kony Ealy, and totally reload my overall roster talent.

I’m not confident in Greg Robinsons status. He has to be a day one starter, as high as he is drafted – But will he be the solid figure some think he will be? I WOULD SAY NO. and depending on what team drafts him, not many Pro Bowls at all…

Here is the guarantee of the year for you….I guarantee Kyle Van Noy, – OF BYU – will be the next Matt McCoy,….

While you pat yourself on the back as the GM of the Year……LOL!!!!

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 6:19 am
Reply to  gmcliff

SMFH!

paulman
paulman
February 12, 2014 6:55 am
Reply to  DCar

Joe Banner texted me that whenever he gets his next Job in the NFL,
That he will hire me to be his GM… šŸ™‚

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 12, 2014 11:32 am
Reply to  paulman

I think that’s great Buddy. I just have this advice for you from the Bible..

Proverbs 13:20 – The one walking with the wise, will become wise; But the one who has dealings with stupid one will fair badly.

Think about it…..:)

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 12, 2014 11:54 am
Reply to  DCar

You heard him right DCar?

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 12:21 pm
Reply to  gmcliff

He’s a funny cat! I don’t know how anyone dislikes paulman? Dude is hysterical.

alwaysphilly
February 12, 2014 7:39 am
Reply to  gmcliff

gm your a talent evaluator and I’ve got alot of names but I’d like for you to check out Larry Webster Jr. He’s from Bloomberg,6-6 240lbs only played football for one year at DE. Runs a 4.6, ex basketball player very athletic. I think we draft him in the 7th round but put him on the IR for the year, lift weights,get bigger, teach him the OLB position and look like geniuses. Also his Dad played in the NFL for 11 years. He’s my sleeper pick of the year. I like your guy from Western Kentucky to at ILB

gmcliff
gmcliff
February 12, 2014 11:41 am
Reply to  alwaysphilly

I am very aware of who he is. He obviously has good genes, but be careful when it comes to expectations of kids whose Fathers were Professional Athletes; Sometimes it means nothing.

We had Karl Malone’s Son here not too long ago, and how did that work out? and there have been even more failures. These kids have to be evaluated on their own merit.

He actually has a chance to become something, but it’s unclear until he gets into a training camp. He played a level of football that wasn’t very competitive, and displayed some talent. He played in one of the Senior Bowls, and held his own.

But he hasn’t played football for very long, and you just don’t come into the NFL, and dominate while your learning the game. He has a chance, but he will have some growing pains, and the rest depends upon him, his drive, heart, and Physical Talent……possible 6th Round Pick – UDFA

alwaysphilly
February 11, 2014 4:59 pm

What a whack job. You crack me up Paulman.

Butch007
Butch007
February 11, 2014 10:45 pm

Ok…in the games where it counted (the playoffs) the interior O-Line of the Eagles couldn’t block an inch forward. I’m tired of hearing people say Kelce and Mathis are great players…they’re not. Herremans is probably worn out or close, but Mathis and Kelce are extremely undersized and get overpowered by bigger tackles. Atleast one of the players on the interior of the line has to get moved out by a better player for the offense to be reliable in the run in critical games and against better D-Lines.

mhenski
mhenski
February 12, 2014 11:58 am

******PHILLIES NEWS

SOURCES ARE STATING THAT JON HART WILL BE BREAKING NEWS THAT THE PHILLIES SIGNED A.J. BURNETT WITHIN THE NEXT 48 HOURS

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 12:29 pm
Reply to  mhenski

F^#@ the Phillies, F^#@ Ruin 2morrow Jr. & F^#@ Lil Bron-Bron, Jon! Hamels ain’t going to ready for the opener, so they sign another AARP member, to join the Bocce club. They knew in November, Hamels had Tendonitis, & they lied, & withheld information as usual, while Ruin 2morrow spews his verbal diarrhea, & propaganda, about this $#!t team able to compete! This team will be $#!T, for 5+ years now, until Ruin, .300 Monty, are gone, the crypt keeper owners croak, & they properly rebuild! F^#@ this joke of a franchise. I didn’t renew my partial season ticket package. They won’t rob me again!

bugsyhawk
bugsyhawk
February 12, 2014 1:00 pm

Normally I agree with you about the Phils DCAR, but I don’t mind this signing at all. One year deal for a guy who pitched pretty well the last 2 years. He will be the number 3 and could win 14-15 games if they score runs. Insurance for the Cuban and Fausto, I mean Roberto.

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 1:08 pm
Reply to  bugsyhawk

bugs, does it really matter? He’s 37, & was going to retire. How much desire will he have, when he was going to retire. Dude is a glorified KK, & he’s has a history of injuries. Our f^#@ing inept, stupid GM, new in November, that Hamels was banged up, but he wastes $$$$ Fausto, the stiff, KK the ultimate 500 pitcher, & does nothing to upgrade. Win 14-15 games? Come on dude, stop it! This team is shot, & the moron is just patching up gapping holes, with cheese cloth, delusionally expecting us to compete! He really believes this, & that’s even more scarier, than his retarded ineptness!

bugsyhawk
bugsyhawk
February 12, 2014 1:16 pm

I am not saying that he is going to save the season at all and I agree with you about the situation that Ruben has got the team into. All am I saying is that this is about the only signing that I agree with this off season.

Look at the stats for the last 2 seasons: Averaging 30 starts and about a 3.40 ERA. Won 16 games 2 years ago and last year only won 10 because they didn’t hit for him. 3.30 ERA. 14-15 if they hit which will be the big question.

I still think that they are gonna be crappy, but I don’t think that this was a bad move.

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 1:59 pm
Reply to  bugsyhawk

bugs, it’s a bad move, when he’s 37 years old, was all but retired, & we could still have signed Ubaldo Jimenez, who is 7 years younger, a better pitcher, for the same amount, or less. He just wants multi-years. Like I said covering up gapping holes, with cheesecloth.

paulman
paulman
February 12, 2014 1:23 pm

With Cole Hamels now missing the first 2-3 Weeks of the 2014 Season due to Tendinitis in his Shoulder, I am now downgrading the Phils from a 78 Win Season to a 76 Win Season… Good Times this Summer down at CBP

DCar
DCar
February 12, 2014 2:00 pm
Reply to  paulman

That’s being generous paul. Got a very bad, pessimistic vibe with this AARP Bocce club. They might not hit 70.

Biglion821
Biglion821
February 12, 2014 2:29 pm

16 mllion for him? I’m pullng my kid off the football field and teaching him the split finger and slider tomorrow. Damn shame he isn’t a lefty.