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Eagles view left tackle situation as a positive

Howie Roseman stood before reporters in Indianapolis for the NFL Scouting Combine with a clear plan for the Eagles' offseason: Retool and inject youth.

However, when it comes to left tackle, the plan isn't quite as clear.

That is because the Eagles have two left tackles who are capable of starting in the NFL. One being Jason Peters, a living legend who is all but assured a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and the other being Andre Dillard, the now second-year pro who the Eagles traded up to select in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Although the Eagles went out of their way to get Dillard, it was understood that he was to sit and learn behind the future Hall of Famer during his rookie season. It was also clear that Peters was to eventually pass the torch to the up-and-comer. Dillard sat and learned, but he also started four games (three at left tackle, one at right tackle) when Peters was sidelined due to injury.

Turning the page to 2020, however, it would seem that there would be a smooth transition to Dillard becoming the full-time starter at left tackle, but all indications are pointing to Peters wanting to return for a 17th season, creating an interesting situation for the Eagles.

But what most would view as a complicated dilemma, the Eagles view as a net positive. At the end of the day, the more quality offensive linemen you have, the better off you'll be come the regular season.

"It's an O-line deficient league and I think we feel fortunate that we have these good options and it's not the flip side, where we're trying to figure out what we're going to do going forward on our offensive line, that we have a lot of good options to choose from," Roseman said Tuesday.

Roseman and Head Coach Doug Pederson were unified in that the team won't close the door on Peters if he decides to give it another go in 2020. However, the nine-time Pro Bowl selection is soon to be an unrestricted free agent, giving him full control of where he wants to play next season.

Roseman said Tuesday that the Eagles are keeping an open mind when it comes to Peters along with all of the team's pending free agents.

"Obviously, when you're talking about Jason Peters, you're talking about a Hall of Fame player, a Hall of Fame person, someone who's really special to us and played at a really high level last year," he said.

Peters donning midnight green in 2020 provides a number of positives for the Eagles. Besides being another talented offensive lineman at their disposal, he also provides leadership qualities that are not easily found around the NFL. Roseman and Pederson spoke about Peters' significance Tuesday.

"Those guys are special people and special players and you don't have a lot of those during the course of your career, so you try to make decisions first that are best for the football team and at same time, have respect and appreciation for what guys have done and what guys have done going forward and are going to be part of the organization for a long time," Roseman said.

During his brief time in the lineup, Dillard showed enough to make this an interesting decision for the Eagles. But is having a plethora of talented offensive linemen a good thing in the long run? If you ask the Eagles, yes.

"Andre getting that experience at left tackle was huge for him," Roseman said. "We're very confident in his abilities to be a really good player, but it's a good problem for us to have, that we have a lot of these offensive linemen that we think are good players and that can play."

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