Eagles have an under-the-radar battle brewing on the offensive line

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – DECEMBER 05: Philadelphia Eagles guard Landon Dickerson (69) during the National Football League game between the New York Jets and the Philadelphia Eagles on December 5, 2021 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)

The Eagles go into OTA’s with a talent-filled roster. Superb starters are mixed with dependable backups; hungry young prospects mixed with veteran savvy. With a team as loaded as the Eagles, there are always bound to be exciting positional battles throughout the roster. But one in particular is flying under the radar.

The Eagles are likely to have a battle at right guard. It’s a position that that team is looking to solidify following the retirement of Brandon Brooks, and the healthy returns of both Jack Driscoll and Isaac Seumalo.

The Landon Dickerson Solve

There is a consensus that because Seumalo is healthy that he should be placed back into the left guard role he’s played since 2016. The issue is that not only do the Eagles have a solution at the position, but the replacement was far better than Seumalo ever was.

Landon Dickerson was drafted in round two of 2021 to be the heir apparent to Jason Kelce. Except Kelce didn’t retire this offseason, and Dickerson absolutely dominated alongside Jordan Mailata on the left side. Pro Football Focus may have graded Seumalo’s 2021 season (three games) better than Dickerson’s, but it’s clear by the end of the season, the Alabama product was playing at a far higher level than Seumalo ever had.

With Dickerson’s emergence at left guard and the selection of Cam Jurgens in this past draft, it’s bumped Seumalo to competing for the right guard spot. The issue? Someone is already dominating at that spot too.

Money Matters

Seumalo is in the final year of a three-year extension and carries a cap hit of over $7 million, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be back.

Jack Driscoll, on the other hand, becomes a free agent after the 2023 season. The fifth-round pick out of Auburn is on a rookie deal and could be lining up for an extension that would probably be cheaper than Seumalo’s.

The position battle this camp could very well determine who gets the extension and who talks in free agency.

Who Wins?

Depending on who you ask, Driscoll has been far more consistent than Seumalo. While Seumalo has been very good in spurts, he’s also had moments where he has really struggled to perform at a high level.

In reality, it’s also fair to say that whoever wins the battle at right guard, will ultimately be fine because of the work of OL Coach, Jeff Stoutland.

The Eagles have plenty of depth along the offensive front, so having one of Seumalo or Driscoll coming off the bench as backup isn’t exactly a bad thing. The question really stems from what the Eagles are trying to do offensively.

As training camp gets closer and closer, the positional battles along the team will be heavily scrutinized. But the one position battle everyone will eventually be talking about is the one at Right Guard. And while the loser could very well be an excellent backup option, he could also be shipped off for an early-season trade to bolster a different position of need as well.

Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire