Who Gets First Crack at Left Tackle?
It was reported over the weekend that Eagles right guard and former left tackle, Jason Peters, wanted to be paid more money to move back to the tackle position after Andre Dillard was lost for the season due to injury.
On Tuesday at Eagles practice, it was Matt Pryor getting the first crack at replacing Dillard, not Peters, playing left tackle.
"Matt Pryor will begin the work over there," Eagles head coach Doug Pederson explained. "Jordan Mailata will be getting some work over there. Driscoll is working some right side as well. So, we're going to continue that rotation."
Pederson said that he wasn't sure where the report came from that suggested that Peters wanted to be paid more money to change positions, but did say that Peters has done a very good job at his new position.
"Jason Peters for us has done an outstanding job at right guard," Pederson said. "He's comfortable at right guard. We have some options at left tackle that we're working through over there."
"It doesn't undermine anything. The fact that Jason has really embraced a new role for him, he's done it well. He's playing at a high level in what we've asked him to do there and he's comfortable."
As you guys know, it's hard to disrupt too many positions with that offensive line. We've got a few more days here before we really get into regular season week to find out who that left tackle will be. But got some options over there."
So would Peters move back to tackle if Pederson and the Eagles asked him?
"That would be a private conversation, one between me and Jason," stated Pederson "I probably wouldn't reveal that to you guys."
Pryor has never played left tackle at the NFL level, but does have experience at right guard. In fact in last seasons Wild Card game against Seattle, Petrs started at left tackle and Pryor at right guard. So why not switch them back to those spots?
"The fact that he's come in here and done a great job for us at right guard, he's solidified that right guard," Pederson explained. "He's worked well with Lane when Lane has been out there. He's working great with [C Jason] Kelce. Kelce has a comfort level there with him.
"The thing is if we end up moving too many spots, especially this late into camp, it can disrupt some timing up front. Those guys need to be in sync. For us to go out and put our best five up there, that's the plan, that's where we're going, that's where we're headed. We're going to get them all ready to play."
One other option would be to move right tackle Lane Johnson over to left tackle and use on of the guys playing left tackle, Jack Driscoll, Pryor and Jordan Mailate over to the right side, something Pederson shot down today.
"Well, if you did that, who are you putting at right tackle?" Pederson asked. "Are you going to put Driscoll over there, Pryor, Mailata over there? There are so many moving parts. That's why it's so important for us as a team moving forward that we keep guys in their spots, work at their spots, and we figure out one position as opposed to figuring out two or three.
"Obviously, we've had these conversations in the past with Lane. But Lane is our right tackle. He's comfortable there."
With the Eagles facing a very good Washington defensive front in the opener, including No. 2 overall pick Chase Young and veteran Ryan Kerrigan, left tackle will be a very important position for protecting Carson Wentz's blind side.