Could Philadelphia Eagles Have A Health Issue On The O-Line?

By Joseph Hickman
Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Line
Howard Smith – USA TODAY Sports

Is anyone else worried about the offensive line? I know I am. I wrote about how I was nervous that Jason Peters was coming back from his two torn Achilles. Nobody seemed that nervous at the time except for me. Now, some injuries are starting to build up on the line even though they could be just minor. Peters is still out with what the Philadelphia Eagles are calling “minor hamstring injuries” and is expected to be back soon. Jason Kelce is out with muscle fatigue, and he suffered a torn ACL and a partially torn MCL during a game last September against the Baltimore Ravens. Even Todd Herremans missed some time last week because of a right knee injury.

I am likely overreacting, but anytime I see Danny Watkins on the field, I get nervous as hell. I just can’t help it. The Eagles’ offensive line was extremely banged up last season as we all know. Four of the Eagles linemen are coming off surgeries: Peters, Kelce, Herremans and guard Evan Mathis. The crazy thing is that Mathis was the only lineman to start all 16 games last season. So, yeah, health could be an issue. I know modern medicine is well advanced, but sometimes players are not fully healed in a calendar year. It sometimes takes two full years, especially for players coming off major injuries the size of Peters’ and Kelce’s. If you’re looking for an example, look no further then Ryan Howard, Philadelphia sports fans.

So do you think that I am overreacting? Like I said before, likely I am. My reasons are obvious, and the answer would be Chip Kelly‘s offense. For Kelly to run his very fast-paced offensive system that relies on speed and agile lineman to work as a cohesive unit, they will need to be healthy and be in the best shape of their careers. Football Outsiders Almanac keeps offensive pace for  every NFL team. The New England Patriots were the fastest at 24.5 seconds per play. The Wall Street Journal took a sample of Oregon‘s pace during a game last season, and their average was 23.2 seconds, according to Sheil Kapadia of Birds 24/7. Now that is why I am worried. Okay, fine, I am worried because I see Watkins on the field.

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