Eagles Add Center Tennant, Release Vallos

The Eagles have made a roster move at center, signing Matt Tennant and releasing Steve Vallos.

Tennant (6-5, 300) was originally a fifth-round pick by the Saints in 2010. He played his college ball at Boston College. In 2010 and 2011, Tennant appeared in six games for New Orleans, but did not start any of them, according to Pro Football Focus. He was let go and claimed on waivers by the Patriots before this season. New England released Tennant once previously, but ended up re-signing him. Tennant did not dress for any games with the Patriots.

Here’s the NFL.com write-up on Tennant from when he was drafted:

Strengths: Tennant possesses a nice blend of size and athleticism. Displays impressive initial quickness and agility to reach his blocks at the second level. Is a real technician with great field awareness. Exhibits good hand use and gets his arms extended and locked. Body control and balance are also impressive.

Weaknesses: Has a good frame but lacks good bulk for the position. Does not possess the power to consistently deal with the bull rush when pass blocking or blow interior lineman off the ball in the running game. Is not a great knee bender.

The Eagles clearly feel like they have to upgrade the offensive line, but their options are limited right now. They’ve handed the starting left tackle spot back to King Dunlap, demoting Demetress Bell for the time-being. They also worked out veteran tackle/guard Chris Williams, but he signed with the Rams.

The Eagles have been scrambling at center ever since Jason Kelce tore his ACL in Week 2 against the Ravens. Kelce had surgery yesterday but is out for the season.

Dallas Reynoldshas started the last four games, but he’s been shaky. Vallos spent training camp with the Eagles, but was cut before the season started. He was re-signed after the Kelce injury, but didn’t dress the last two games.

There’s a chance Tennant could push Reynolds, but considering we’re already in Week 8, he’ll have to make up for lost time.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.

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  • UncleCarm

    This is the biggest problem with Mudd’s system: it is not plug and play. Our folks who had training camp are having trouble with it. How are they going to find someone to step in and help in any positive way?

  • http://twitter.com/THEKID_ Mike Jehle

    Who ever thought a 5th round pick from Da ‘Natti going down with injury would cause this much trouble…Reid makes some bonehead picks, but Kelce was a true gem.
    Still don’t like Reid or his plan…but credit where credit is due.

    • poetx

      what’s wrong is that instead of installing certain plays to take advantage of Peters’ and Kelce’s uncommon athleticism, they made that the ENTIRE offense.

      we cannot base block. and the offense apparently has no regular running game on which to rely when we don’t have a center who can pull on sweeps and block safeties, or an LT who can punch an elite DE, then run upfield and mirror block a CB.

      sure, you want to maximize what you’ve got, but that building that level of scheme dependency upon specific players is nuts because of just this reason. now peters had a much more diversified skillset than kelce. he could drive block with the best of them and pancake opposing defensive linemen. but kelce, for all his talents, was still subject to getting blown off the ball on straight ahead runs, or getting bullrushed by DTs.

      when, in the eagles history with andy reid, have they EVER been able to consistently line up and convert 3rd and short without all kinds of triple-dipple-reverses with a guard pulling this way and a center pulling that way? it’s maddening.

  • JofreyRice

    Nice. If Steve Vallos can’t push Dallas Reynolds, then he shouldn’t be on an NFL roster. The pre-draft buzz on Tennant, here and other places, paint the picture of a player a lot like Kelce; quick, smart, and a little on the weak side. Reynolds is really bad, and there is no “continuity” on the line to disrupt, so I’m hoping Tennant displaces him as the starter sooner, rather than later.

  • jabostick

    I know it’s been a while since he’s played and not ideal for Mudd, etc etc, but I don’t see what the harm would’ve been to bring in Jamaal Jackson over the bye for a look.

    • alasi

      It would mean that they made a mistake in releasing him.

  • mj1

    Damn right they made a mistake. before jackson’s injury he was considered one of the best centers in the league.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mjacobs45 Matt Jacobs

      You couldn’t be more wrong. Jackson was in the bottom 5-6 his entire career

  • mj1

    they just need to squash this blocking system because its built for a running team and we have never been a running team. its just doesnt make any sense!