Former Eagles Pro Bowler Tra Thomas Talks Brandon Brooks Injury and Options to Replace him
Following the season ending injury to starting right guard Brandon Brooks on Monday night, the question on Tuesday was now what?
What do the Eagles do to replace Brooks, who is considered one of the top offensive lineman in football, grading out as the top guard in all football in 2019.
Many have pontificated about the possibility of bringing back Jason Peters, and playing him at right guard, something former Eagles Pro Bowl tackle Tra Thomas doesn't think is necessary.
"The skill isn't the problem, its the wear and tear on the body," Thomas explained. "If you are getting beat up out there playing defensive ends, you're definitely going to get beat up playing offensive guard when your dealing with defensive tackles."
"Everyone just thinks you can mix-and-match and just move around - its not that easy, to just move to different positions like that," Thomas stressed. "Especially when you have been in a left-handed stance for so long, its takes a long-time to get that muscle memory to change."
There is an in-house option, who is currently on the roster. 25-year old Matt Pryor, who started the Eagles Wild Card Playoff game against Seattle and played well enough to be considered for the job says Thomas.
"I thought Matt Pryor came in and held his own," Thomas said. I thought he was really good at protection, to me I don;t feel there was a major drop-off."
Pryor is entering his third season since the Eagles chose him in the sixth-round of the 2018 draft out of TCU. He appeared at right guard in just three career games, starting one. Pryor was being looked at to fill the role of Halapoulivaati Vaitai as the swing tackle and backup guard.
Now he moves to the head of the depth chart at right guard with Brooks out for the season, a position that is more important that people think.
"Right guard is a big role in this offense, especially on the road," Thomas said. "He's the one that starts the cadence, he has to make the calls, tap, get back to balance, there is a lot going on for the right guard."
Listen to the full interview with Tra Thomas on The Sports Bash