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Are the 2018 Eagles better or worse along the offensive line?

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Are the 2018 Eagles better or worse along the offensive line?

After suffering a season-ending injury last October, Jason Peters is expected to reprise his role as the Eagles’ left tackle in 2018. But the way Halapoulivaati Vaitai performed in Peters’ place, there were some suggesting the team should’ve traded or even released the nine-time Pro Bowl selection.

Are the Eagles better or worse with Peters on the offensive line at this point? By now, you should probably know the answer.

Better

Left tackle

This may be considered controversial. Peters is 36 and coming off a pair of torn ligaments in his right knee. There’s no guarantee the future Hall of Famer will return to his once dominant form, or even perform at a high level.

Yeah, yeah. This isn’t the first time Peters has been written off. They said the same thing when he ruptured his Achilles twice during the same 2012 offseason, then he was back to his dominant self in 2013. They said he was in decline after an injury-plagued 2015, and he’s played some of the best football of his career ever since, which is saying something.

Nothing against Vaitai – though perhaps he’s now a tad overrated since aiding the Eagles’ Super Bowl win. Peters is an athletic marvel, and even at 75 percent, he’s better than half the left tackles in the NFL.

Worse

???

You tell us. Everybody is back, minus 33-year-old emergency left tackle Will Beatty, who signed midway through last season and didn’t play a meaningful down. The oldest returning O-lineman besides Peters is center Jason Kelce at 30.

Even if Peters can’t play, the Eagles still have Vaitai, so they can always go back. At worst, the unit should look roughly the same, not accounting for any new injuries.

The same

Continuity

One area where keeping things the same is almost always a positive is along the offensive line. The ability of these five players to work together in concert is such a crucial aspect of the job.

It’s also something the Eagles shouldn’t have to worry about for the foreseeable future. Kelce, right guard Brandon Brooks and right tackle Lane Johnson have played alongside each other for two years. Stefen Wisniewski has a full season under his belt at left guard. And whether it’s Peters or Vaitai at left tackle, both worked roughly half a season next to Wisniewski. If anything, continuity might be improved.

That extends to the bench as well. Vaitai has experience at right tackle. Swing guard Chance Warmack played alongside an array of guys on either side of the line, but always next to Kelce. The top seven in this group are perfectly capable of adjusting on the fly if necessary, while maintaining a level of familiarity.

The unknown

Isaac Seumalo

When an offensive line’s greatest unknown is the backup center, that’s usually a good sign. That being said, Seumalo is a curiosity at this point, and it’s impossible to know whether he can be trusted in his new role.

A third-round draft pick in 2016, Seumalo looked OK in spot duty as a rookie – good enough that the Eagles awarded him the left guard job out of training camp last year. Two weeks into the season, he was on the bench, and lately he’s practicing primarily at center.

It’s unclear whether the Eagles would even turn to Seumalo in a pinch. The 24-year-old is very much on the roster bubble. But assuming he does make the squad, he’s scary until proven otherwise, no matter where he is on the field.

Better or worse?

The Eagles had the best offensive line in the NFL last season. Occasionally, in a situation like that, there might be reason to project regression on the horizon, no matter how good the individual players are.

Yet Johnson, Brooks and Wisniewski are all under age 30, and Peters is back in the mix. The Eagles also invested late-round draft picks in Matt Pryor and Jordan Mailata, which should strengthen the back end of the roster. This group easily looks BETTER.

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Brent Celek would rather retire than play for Cowboys

Brent Celek would rather retire than play for Cowboys

Need another reason to love Brent Celek?

Probably not — the standing ovation he got at the Sixers game in March just hours after being cut by the Eagles gives you a sense of the connection he has with Philadelphia fans.

But appearing Friday on 97.5 The Fanatic, Celek did the one thing guaranteed to get you in any Eagles fan's good graces — diss the Cowboys.

"Hell no. Do you think I would play for the Cowboys? Philly is my home," Celek said. "If they offered me 10 million, I still wouldn't go."

While Celek said back in March before being cut that he wasn't planning to retire, it sounds like his mind has shifted. He has a hard time imagining himself playing anywhere besides Philadelphia.

"I think I'm leaning more toward retirement," Celek said. "I've had a few offers, but none of them are worth leaving a city that I have been in for 11 years where I won the Super Bowl in my final year. It wouldn't feel right to put another uniform on."

Like seeing Brian Dawkins in a Broncos uniform, it would be bizarre to watch Celek suit up for another team. 

If he does find a new home, we know it definitely won't be Dallas. 

You can listen to the full interview with Celek here

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Mets pitcher records 1st MLB hit off Scott Kingery, jokes on social media

Mets pitcher records 1st MLB hit off Scott Kingery, jokes on social media

When someone gets a bloop single or a broken bat hit, they’ll often say “it looks like a line drive in the box score.” Does the same apply when your first major-league hit came off Scott Kingery lobbing pitches over the plate?

Thursday, in the midst of the Mets' 20-run victory, the Phillies used position players to record the final nine outs of the game. Roman Quinn pitched first and regularly registered in the upper 70s with his offerings, but Kingery on the other hand …

In the eighth inning, Mets reliever Jerry Blevins was called on to hit for just the fourth time in his 12-year MLB career and he delivered with an RBI single off the soft-tossing rookie infielder. 

After the game, Blevins took to social media to make a joke about his first hit.

Mets fans had some fun with the moment, too.

While Dodgers fans, just didn’t get it.

The Phillies went on to win the second game of the twin bill, aided by a solo home run from Kingery. The Phils also gained a half-game on the Atlanta Braves in the standings, so we can have a laugh at this one.

Congratulations, Jerry, it’s a line drive off Kershaw in the box score.

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