Saturday, February 13, 2016

Herremans to RT; Mathis to LG

Sensing what many have sensed -- that their right tackle situation was a mess -- the Eagles moved left guard Todd Herremans to right tackle to replace King Dunlap.

Herremans to RT; Mathis to LG

Todd Herremans will move to right tackle. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Todd Herremans will move to right tackle. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

Sensing what many have sensed -- that their right tackle situation was a mess -- the Eagles moved left guard Todd Herremans to right tackle to replace King Dunlap.

Dunlap was only a temporary starter with incumbant Winston Justice and the recently-acquired Ryan Harris injured, but the Herremans move appears to be a permanent one.

"As far as I know," it's permanent, Herremans said. "We'll see. Those decisions aren't for me to be made."

The move was made after the Eagles learned that Harris would need back surgery and Justice's return from knee surgery was further delayed. Andy Reid said Saturday that Justice "was not all the way back but he's close." The Eagles coach has been saying Justice was close for weeks now.

More coverage
Inside the Eagles: Mudd remaking O-line
Good and bad news for Eagles
Eagles rounding into form
MTC: Man Up: Matthews, Chaney bounce back
Birds' Eye View: Who makes the cut: LBs
Buy Eagles tickets
Eagles schedule
Special Section: Daily News fantasy football preview

Justice had arthroscopic knee surgergy in February. Harris will have his back operated on Sunday, Reid said.

With Herremans now at right tackle, Evan Mathis was bumped up to first team left guard. Mathis was signed as a free agent in late July and fell under the radar as the Eagles added bigger names. He has 22 career starts -- 15 at right guard, seven at left guard -- and hasn't started since 2009.

"Ever since I got here, from day one I’ve been trying to show what I can do out there," said Mathis, an eight-year veteran.

Dunlap has played OK since taking over right tackle for Harris, but the Eagles obviously believed they needed an upgrade to protect quarterback Michael Vick's blindside.

"He runs around so much that he has blindsides everywhere," Herremans joked.

Herremans, who played tackle in college and started off at that position as a rookie with the Eagles, has five career starts at left tackle. He said he took a snap at right tackle two seasons ago. He later tweeted, "Ask and you shall receive ..." after he confirmed the move.

"I was a tackle before I was a guard," Herremans said. "It's going to feel comfortable eventually. I've just got to get in there and get reps. I guess you just see a different type of rusher. You're not blocking 350-pound guys anymore. You're going to see a little bit faster guys. It's not like speed I haven't seen before. I'm excited."

As much as right tackle has been in flux, the center of the line had a number of struggles in Thursday night's preseason game against the Browns. Rookies Danny Watkins and Jason Kelce had their hands full early in the game as Vick took a beating. Despite that, Kelce is still starting at center ahead of veteran Jamaal Jackson and Watkins is still at right guard.

"You can call it a competition if you want," Jackson said. "I don't. That's pretty much it. If he needs help I'll help him. Competition -- nah, there's no competition."

Asked to clarify his comment, Jackson said, "Just what I said -- there's no competition. Whoever's in there they're the starter. Point blank."

Staff Writer
We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog
Birds' Eye View is the Inquirer's blog covering all things Philadelphia Eagles and the NFL.

Jeff McLane Staff Writer
Zach Berman Staff Writer
Latest Videos:
Also on
letter icon Newsletter