What Sua Opeta landing on IR means for the Eagles

PHILADELPHIA, PA – OCTOBER 22: Philadelphia Eagles offensive guard Sua Opeta (78) warms up during the game between the New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles on October 22, 2020 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

Another day, another Eagles’ offensive line injury. Jason Peters appeared on the injury report today, but in news that’s actually surprising, 24-year old Sua Opeta was placed on IR with a back injury.

According to Dave Zangaro, Opeta will need surgery on a bulging disc in his back.

Today, Jeff Stoutland spoke highly of the former UDFA who joined the Eagles out of Weber State in 2019. Sua Opeta played in 24% of the Eagles’ snaps this season, garnering a 57.6 PFF grade and allowing 1 sack. He jumped Nate Herbig in the depth chart despite a very strong start to the year by his teammate.

With Opeta now out of the equation, it means we will see Herbig back in the starting lineup for the foreseeable future. He actually played in every single snap during the opening half of the season, giving up only two sacks and drawing praise from all angles. The decision to switch him for Opeta was a confusing one, but Herbig will have a shot to earn back that spot over the next few weeks.

Depth at guard is now extremely low. In a worst-case scenario, the Eagles would likely be forced to roll rookie Jack Driscoll out in place of the injured Lane Johnson and give the guard spots to Pryor and Herbig, so that all three are playing in their natural positions.

Luke Juriga is listed as the primary backup behind Jason Kelce, which is something worth noting after Kelce’s close shave last week. Jamon Brown is (somehow?) still on the practice squad despite his terrible Eagles debut, but beyond that, there really is nobody else.

It’s time to let the young guys off the leash and hope they can build some consistency as the season winds to a close, with the Eagles set to field their 10th offensive line combo in 11 weeks.

Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire