Over the last two seasons, Eagles fans have seen left guard Evan Mathis go from a little-known free agent signing to one of the best players on the team. While Mathis hasn't been to a Pro Bowl, he has helped anchor the Eagles' offensive line through good times and bad. On Wednesday, Mathis received some national attention when he was selected as a member of USA Today's famed All-Joe Team.
The All-Joe Team highlights players who are among the best at their position but don't always receive the proper credit. This year's list was compiled by Nate Davis, who selected Mathis because of his toughness and flat-out ability.
"He missed three snaps in 2012," Davis wrote. "Every other starter on Philadelphia's line missed all or part of the season. His availability aside, Mathis is simply one of the NFL's top guards."
Mathis joined the Eagles during Training Camp in 2011 and was expected to battle for a job. But Mathis did much more than that – he won the left guard spot during the preseason and emerged as one of the best in the NFL. According to Pro Football Focus, Mathis has been the best guard in the NFL two years running. The site, which tracks every play from every game, noted that Mathis has only given up one sack during his time in Philadelphia.
The All-Joe Team is limited to players who have never made the Pro Bowl and features at least one player from every team. Previous All-Joe Eagles include tight end Brent Celek and offensive lineman Todd Herremans (2011), running back LeSean McCoy and defensive tackle Antonio Dixon (2010) and wide receiver Jason Avant (2009) among others.
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