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Who stays, Who Goes: Interior Offensive Line

Just about everyone on the inside is a keeper, except Brandon Brooks, though Eagles could decide to upgrade their depth, and Jason Kelce is the lynchpin
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It all starts with the anchor, Jason Kelce.

The Eagles want him to stop flirting with retirement and go steady with them for at least one more year if not longer.

Head coach Nick Sirianni sweetened the offer by sending him two kegs of beer recently, or so he said on the 94WIP morning show. What else would he send to make his desire for a return known, a charm bracelet?

As the season ground to an end, my thought was the veteran center would retire.

His family was planning a trip to Philadelphia to watch him play against the Cowboys in the Week 18 regular-season finale thinking that it may have been his final home game, thinking the longer recovery time from a game day’s aches and pains were becoming too wearisome for the 34-year-old.

Now, my belief is Kelce will return.

In our who stays, who goes series, he is probably the most important piece to mark down as staying when it comes to the interior of the offensive line.

It’s up to him, though.

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The others who stay include Isaac Seumalo, whose season ended in Week 3. Which position Seumalo returns to isn’t 100% certain. 

He could come back to left guard, though Landon Dickerson has settled in nicely there, or right guard because it looks as though Brandon Brooks will not return, probably choosing to retire after dealing with injuries that have required surgery the past few seasons.

Seumalo could also play center should Kelce retire.

Either way, he is a versatile piece that isn’t going anywhere.

Others who should stay on the interior include Dickerson – obviously – and Jack Driscoll – not so obvious after his first two seasons in the league have ended with him on IR.

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Nate Herbig is also a keeper.

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As for Jack Anderson and Sua Opeta, the Eagles could look to upgrade there, though both are well-regarded within the organization.

The lynchpin to the interior, obviously, is Kelce.

He is certainly on top of his game, earning a fourth All-Pro nod at the season’s end.

He has started 122 straight games, a streak important enough to him that he was able to return from the COVID list in the days leading up to playing Dallas. Kelce played one snap and was removed.

That’s it right there, the reasons for my belief that he will return.

One, he is still playing at a high level.

Two, games played just might matter to him and right now he has made it into 159 of them for the Eagles, which has him sitting ninth on the career games played list for the franchise.

Brandon Graham is right in front of him with 161, so those two will jockey back and forth.

If Kelce plays all 17 in 2022, he will have played in 176, which would put him in third all-time, one ahead of former tight end Brent Celek’s 175. Graham could slot somewhere in there as well.

The top two in franchise history in terms of games played are David Akers at 188, and Brian Dawkins and Harold Carmichael at 180 each.

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Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles or www.eaglemaven.com and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.