You can never have enough offensive line depth. That’s the fundamental rule the Philadelphia Eagles have lived by over the course of the last decade.
So when Ian Rappaport reported that the team was working out former first-round pick D.J. Fluker, no one seemed ultimately too surprised by the visit.
Who is D.J Fluker?
Fluker, 32, hasn’t played in the NFL since the 2020 season and has bounced around from team to team and has experience at playing both guard and tackle. He’s started 96 games between the Ravens, Giants, Chargers, and Seahawks in a seven-year span.
There are plenty of reasons why the team has worked out an NFL vet like Fluker but the two biggest ones could very well have him signed if everything goes well on his visit.
Stoutland University and a Viral Video
Whatever Jeff Stoutland touches turns to gold. At least, that is what seems to be the case for the Eagles since the offensive line coach was hired back in 2013. Stoutland has made journeymen like Evan Mathis into All-Pro players and All-Pro players like Jason Kelce into Hall-of-Fame talents.
Fluker’s viral video certainly doesn’t hurt either.
Fluker’s viral video that showed he had lost 40 pounds has enticed many people to see what Stoutland would be able to do with a journeyman veteran in the position. Fluker and Stoutland actually worked together when both were at the college level in Alabama.
And in the end, the team can’t go wrong with a Stoutland disciple for depth.
It’s also worth noting that Fluker and Nick Sirianni also overlapped during their time in Los Angeles. The Eagles do love finding players with ties to the current staff and Fluker is no exception.
Experienced depth matters in the NFL
Whenever the Eagles have a bad season, the usual cause is that the team’s offensive line gets decimated with injuries, and the young talent backing them up doesn’t have enough experience to garner much respect. That’s what happened in 2005, 2012, 2015, and 2020 over the years.
Should the team sign a player like D.J Fluker, the Eagles’ offensive line would have a veteran presence who is in great shape and can back up any of the young guards on the roster should they get hurt. Instead of the team crumbling because of a loss to someone like Lane Johnson, the Eagles would be able to back him up with a player like Jack Driscoll and not need to burn through the guards on the roster.
Fluker could also help with other Alabama prospects like Tyler Steen and Landon Dickerson at guard. Should the Eagles move Cam Jurgens to that position, tutelage from a veteran like Fluker certainly wouldn’t hurt either.
Not every visit after the draft usually ends up with a contract being signed – that’s just the nature of the business. But with the Eagles looking to meet with a veteran like Fluker, it’s a clear sign the team isn’t close to completing their final roster holes.
And whoever they want to bring from the offensive line has been well worth the risk over the last few years.
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