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State Of The Offensive Tackle Position

Here's a look at the offensive tackle position as the Eagles enjoy their bye week and begin preparations for the second half of the 2010 season.

What They've Accomplished: The only tackle to play each game this season is Winston Justice. The 6-6, 320 pound right tackle has been solid this season, and now must protect the blind side of quarterback Michael Vick. Of course, that's nothing new to Justice. While at USC, Justice was charged with protecting the blind side of the left-handed Matt Leinart. The former Trojan is also one of the least penalized offensive linemen on the Eagles, only committing two penalties through the first seven games.

The left tackle position belongs to Jason Peters, though he's battled injuries through the first half of the 2010 season. Peters started five of seven games, and has done a solid job matched up against the opposing team's best pass rusher. An underrated part of Peters' game is run blocking, something he has done quite well at so far this year. In fact, the Eagles are second in the NFL in rushing yards off the left edge (7.83 yards per attempt).

Filling in for Peters the past two weeks has been third-year tackle King Dunlap. Aside from being the biggest player on the team (6-9, 330 pounds), Dunlap is one of the hardest workers as well. He's spent two full seasons preparing for the opportunity to play, and when he got his shot, he didn't disappoint. Dunlap got rave reviews from his teammates after his first start, a pivotal NFC showdown with the Atlanta Falcons. Matched up against Pro Bowl defensive end John Abraham, Dunlap rendered him ineffective, as Abraham rarely got within arm's length of quarterback Kevin Kolb.

What Lies Ahead: Moving forward, Peters and Justice will be charged with manning the edges of an Eagles offensive line that continues to improve week in and week out. But it's nice to know that if injuries occur, the team has solid and proven depth at offensive tackle.

*-- Posted by Josh Goldman, 10:30 a.m., October 28 *

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