Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE
Almost every mock draft available predicts the Philadelphia Eagles will take left tackle Luke Joeckel to solidify an offensive line that played extremely poorly in 2012 when they pick fourth overall in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Nothing is a sure thing in the draft, but almost every expert thinks the Philadelphia Eagle will take offensive tackle Luke Joeckel out of Texas A&M when they pick fourth overall in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Left tackle was a disaster for the Eagles in 2012: Jason Peters tore his Achilles and missed the season, while Demetress Bell was ineffective, eventually losing his spot on the depth chart to King Dunlap, who wasn't any better.
At right tackle, Todd Herremans missed the last eight games of the season with injuries of his own. There's no guarantees that Peters will be able to come back from the Achilles tear, as its an injury that takes a while to recover from. With all that combined with numerous interior line issues, the Eagles were fifth in the league in sacks allowed and tops in QB hits.
Needless to say, the line needs some work, and any line starts with the left tackle. There, Joeckel is widely considered the best available, so the Eagles will likely jump on him when given the opportunity. Dan Kadar of SB Nation's Mocking the Draft wasn't making a bold pick when he predicted the team would select Joeckel in his 2013 NFL Mock Draft:
This pick has quickly become a consensus, and for good reason. There is no certainty that left tackle Jason Peters can return after twice rupturing his Achilles' tendon before the season. Joeckel would be able to step right into Philadelphia's starting lineup at left tackle and stay there for years. He's a high-caliber tackle prospect who improved as the 2012 college football season progressed. Joeckel is the same caliber of prospect as players like Matt Kalil this year and Russell Okung in 2010. Joeckel, who excels in pass protection, may not be Joe Thomas, but he's close. He's a franchise player in a draft with few of them.