Head coach Doug Pederson on Friday confirmed NBC Sports Philadelphia Eagles writer Dave Zangaro’s report that Isaac Seumalo has been getting first-team reps at left guard (see story) but wouldn’t confirm that Seumalo will replace struggling Steve Wisniewski in the Eagles’ starting lineup.
He didn't deny it, either.
“We’re obviously evaluating everybody right now,” Pederson said.
Seumalo, a third-round pick in 2016, started the first two games at left guard last year before being replaced by Chance Warmack, who gave way a week later to Wisniewski.
The veteran out of Penn State played well down the stretch and through the playoffs but has not played up to the same level so far this fall.
The entire offensive line has struggled so far and has allowed more sacks the last three weeks (12) than it allowed the last nine games of last year (11).
“I’m just going to say this,” Pederson said. “We’re constantly evaluating everybody. This week we’ve rotated some guys around. Isaac’s played left guard, he’s played some center.
“Just giving guys opportunities to see (what they can do). We haven’t made any changes as of yet.”
Seumalo is the only offensive lineman the Eagles have taken in the first four rounds in their last five drafts, and it’s clear the Eagles eventually want him on the field.
That could come as soon as Sunday afternoon, when the Eagles face the Vikings at the Linc.
“He’s now in his third year, and his confidence level is extremely high right now,” Pederson said of Seumalo.
“He’s healthy. He’s playing physical. He had a really good training camp. He had a good offseason. There’s a lot of positives going with Isaac right now.”
“We’re all comfortable as a staff. (Offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland) is very comfortable with him. … Versatile athlete who we like his progress, his progression, where he’s at, and we’ll see what happens.”
Complicating matters is that center Jason Kelce isn’t totally healthy, and Seumalo and Wisniewski both back up at center.
Kelce is expected to play Sunday, but Pederson said he needs to keep an eye on the veteran two-time Pro Bowler.
“(He needs) rest,” he said. “He’s a veteran player who does a lot for us. Just want to make sure he’s 100 percent.”
So there are a lot of different combinations, with Seumalo and Wisniewski both capable of playing either guard spot or center and Warmack also still on the roster.
Pederson said earlier this week that Jason Peters, who hurt his quad in the Tampa game, is still feeling the effects of that injury. He’s expected to play Sunday, but the whole left side of the line is kind of unsettled going into Sunday.
“With the amount of injuries and trying to get guys to Sunday (we’re) just trying to mix guys up and just rest,” Pederson said.
“So we continue to evaluate and we’ll make changes as we need to.”