When the Eagles lured legendary offensive line coach Howard Mudd out of retirement this offseason, they granted him complete control of the offensive line. Mudd's philosophy involves lighter, versatile and athletic offensive lineman. Guard Evan Mathis fits that bill perfectly and was signed by the Eagles to a one-year contract on Sunday.
A third-round draft pick of the Carolina Panthers in 2005, the 6-5, 302-pound Mathis has played for the Panthers, the Miami Dolphins and the Cincinnati Bengals. Mathis chose to come to Philadelphia for two reasons - the winning tradition of the organization, and the presence of Mudd.
"I asked Coach (Paul) Alexander, my O-line coach in Cincinnati, about Howard and he said he's the best O-line coach in football, so that goes a long way," Mathis said.
Mathis said that he is most comfortable playing left guard, but he has experience everywhere and he'll play wherever he is asked to play. The Eagles gain a veteran lineman who is quickly able to adjust to any scheme. More importantly, they have a player who hasn't allowed a sack in his last two seasons (25 games played), according to Stats Inc., and is ready to compete for a starting job.
"I don't want to let anybody get to the quarterback, or the running back for that matter," Mathis said. "That's our job."
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