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NFL Mock Draft 2013: Eagles projected to strengthen offensive line with fourth pick

Philadelphia surrendered more than a few sacks in 2012, and could address the situation by drafting an offensive lineman with the fourth overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

One of the bigger problems during the 2012 regular season for the Philadelphia Eagles was protecting the quarterback. The Eagles allowed the fifth-highest amount of sacks in the league at 48, and injuries to both quarterbacks, Michael Vick and rookie Nick Foles, were added components to an overall dismal 4-12 year.

As a result, Philadelphia and new head coach Chip Kelly will have the fourth overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft to begin their rehabilitation efforts, and at least two mock drafts see them starting to build a better offensive line.

In his post-Super Bowl mock draft, Rotoworld's Josh Norris sees the Eagles going with Luke Joeckel, the junior offensive tackle from the Texas A&M Aggies. Here's what Norris, who in-part believes the selection could come down to Kelly's confidence in Philadelphia's current offensive line unit, has to say about the pick:

Obviously if Chip Kelly has full confidence that Jason Peters will return to form, this pick might not happen. We still are not sure what type of offensive system Kelly intends to run, but if Oregon-like play calling is featured, the Eagles' offensive line needs to be very mobile and balanced. Joeckel is an excellent athlete for the left tackle position with great posture. He did show deficiencies against Florida, however.

SB Nation's Matthew Fairburn, who also posted an updated mock draft after the Super Bowl on Monday, agrees with Norris. Fairburn writes that the 6'6, 310-pound lineman should be a clear-cut pick by the Eagles if he isn't taken with the first overall selection by the Kansas City Chiefs:

Luke Joeckel would be an obvious choice for the Eagles if the Chiefs pass on him with the No. 1 pick. Jason Peters is a huge question mark given his injury, and Philadelphia can't afford to have the offensive line issues they had in 2012 for another season. The position needs to be addressed.

Joeckel, a native of Arlington, Texas, is the top overall prospect on SB Nation's top 100 big board.