In a press conference at the start of the 2017, offseason General Manager Howie Roseman, made it clear that the Eagles are looking to “Build from the ball out”. Meaning, they are looking to sure up the offensive and defensive fronts and create continuity in the process.
Roseman made good on his promise as free agency kicked off, with the addition of OG Chance Warmack, followed by resigning of OG/C Stephen Wisniewski. As the 2017 NFL draft approached, it was expected that the birds’ would select a young talent to add to the mix, which never happened. Instead, the Eagles brass decided to bring in two prospects to help the defensive front (DE Derrick Barnett and DT Elijah Qualls), in addition to trading for DT Timmy Jernigan, prior to the draft.
As it stood, the Eagles offensive line, was filled with strong players that made up its depth, but as we all know, Howie loves to add competition to the mix. Enter, Tyler Orlosky, a Center out of West Virginia University. The 6’3, 300 lbs, prospect, was considered the 3rd best center in this years draft process, so when he wasn’t selected it was a bit of a surprise. Why he wasn’t drafted, is any ones guess..but after being signed as a UDFA, he could end up being a steal for Philadelphia.
As far as skill set, Orlosky has everything you are looking for in a center, or guard for that matter. His throw back style of play, is only rivaled by his almost perfect technique in the middle of the line. He uses his great size well, and is a better than average athlete, when being asked to pull, or get out in front of a runner. What stands out the most when watching the tape on Orlosky, is his football knowledge. He always seems to know what the defense is calling and is capable of making all the line calls..something that could be critical in Pederson’s Offense.
A 2-time All-Big 12 player, as a junior and senior, he comes with a lot of game experience as he was a 3 year starter, and was thought of as a true leader by his team, earning captaincy votes in the process.
His thick base is helpful in the run game, and his strong arms help keep defenders off of his body in the pass game. Considered a true draft diamond, Orlosky has the skill set to be a contributor on this team and would serve as great depth as he learns the NFL game. In many cases, there are UDFA prospects, that need tons of work, to even be considered a practice squad player, in this case, Orlosky, is a prospect who has all the tools, to slot straight in and compete for a spot on the team during Training Camp.
There is no question that he faces an uphill battle to to make the roster, but if he plays to his potential, the Eagles could be looking at a real steal. With the talent he brings to The City of Brotherly Love, there is no question that the birds’ could have lucked out with this under the radar singing, a signing that’s could be a fixture for years to come.
Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports