Will Cam Jurgens be the Eagles’ right guard in 2023? originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
PHOENIX — It seems very possible, likely even, that Cam Jurgens will be the Eagles’ starting right guard in 2023.
Nick Sirianni just wasn’t ready to go there yet. Not in March.
“We’ll see,” Sirianni said at the NFL owners meetings on Tuesday morning. “We’ll see where we go with him but excited he’s on our team and excited that he adds major depth to our team.”
The Eagles used a second-round pick (No. 51 overall) on Jurgens out of Nebraska last year and then Jurgens basically had a redshirt season as Jason Kelce’s backup.
Now that Kelce is returning for his 13th season in 2023, that center job still isn’t open. And a second redshirt season for Jurgens might not make much sense, especially after starting right guard Isaac Seumalo left in free agency for the Steelers.
Things seem to be lining up for the 23-year-old Jurgens to step into that right guard role until Kelce retires.
“We’ll just see what’s the best situation for Cam and for the team,” Sirianni said. “But we have a lot of confidence in Cam and we’re excited that he can play multiple positions. So to say leader in the clubhouse at this particular time, we still have a lot of things to go through before we have to make any decisions.”
After converting from tight end early in his career at Nebraska, Jurgens played only center on the offensive line for the Cornhuskers. The Eagles’ plan was to have Jurgens cross-train during his rookie training camp but then Kelce needed a relatively minor elbow surgery that kept him out all summer.
Those first-team reps at center were valuable for Jurgens but it also put him a little behind in the cross-training department. Still, once Kelce returned for the season, Jurgens got “a good amount” of reps at guard during the season in practice.
While Jurgens might not look like a prototypical guard, his build is very similar to Seumalo. The Eagles listed Seumalo at 6-foot-4, 303 pounds and Jurgens is 6-3, 303. And Jurgens actually has longer arms than Seumalo, which should help him play further away from the center position.
The Eagles really value versatility in their offensive linemen, especially their backups. Sirianni pointed specifically at Jack Driscoll, who has played guard and tackle during his three seasons with the Eagles.
“We like that versatility in your guys and we feel like Cam has that,” Sirianni said.
There’s a chance the Eagles could add an offensive lineman with one of their six draft picks next month. But if not, the top contenders for that right guard spot are Jurgens, Driscoll and Sua Opeta.
But only one of those players was a second-round pick last year. And you’d have to think the Eagles will give Jurgens every opportunity to take that position.
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