As the 2010 season came to an end, the Eagles saw an increasing need for an offensive tackle to lineup opposite of Jason Peters. Peters was holding down the left side, but with a left-handed quarterback like Michael Vick, this is not the blindside.
After it appeared that he was developing as an offensive tackle, Winston Justice proved to be inconsistent down the stretch. Vick lost confidence in his protection and began to make poor judgments. To stop this from happening, the Eagles need to solidify their offensive line and very well may look to do so in the first-round of the 2011 draft.
One player that fits the bill is offensive tackle Gabe Carimi out of the University of Wisconsin. At 6-7 325 pounds, he’s a big body and excels in run blocking. He’s known to be the kind of guy that hits until the whistle blows, and the Eagles could use a player with that kind of attitude on their line.
As a pass blocker, Carimi is good with his hands and uses his large wing span to his advantage. However, he has a lot of room to improve in terms of his footwork. He’ll have to learn to be quicker if he’s going to be able to stop the talented speed rushers that exist in the NFL. Although he’s been able to rely heavily on his athleticism in college, he’ll need to work on his technique to be elite in the NFL.
The good news is that the Eagles have a very talented offensive line coach in Howard Mudd who can help any potential prospect the Eagles bring in to improve their game, including Carimi.
Below, check out highlights of Carimi against first round defensive end prospect Adrian Clayborn. Carimi does a good job overall, but you can see the players where he gets beat are typically speed rushes around the outside.
The Eagles tend to move around in the first-round of the draft and not pick where they’re originally slated. However, Carimi is a talented prospect that should be around at the 23rd overall selection if the Eagles stay there.