Ex-Vikings Hybrid Guard/Center Hits Waivers, Eagles Interest Swirls

Pat Elflein

Getty Former Vikings guard Pat Elflein is an interesting free agent for the Eagles to look at.

Offensive line depth has been a never-ending talking point in Philadelphia this year. So when a young guard/center hybrid player hit the waiver wire on Saturday morning, naturally the rumors hit social media like a Gulf Coast hurricane. The Vikings released four-year veteran Pat Elflein, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, and any team can put a claim in for him.

Elflein, a third-round pick in 2017, checks all the boxes as a plug-and-play starter: durability, size, strength, versatility, attitude. The 26-year-old was activated off injured reserve on Nov. 13 after sitting out all but one game this year due to a thumb injury. He played 52 offensive snaps at right guard in Minnesota’s season opener and earned a 60.0 overall grade, per Pro Football Focus.

Elflein has played three different positions in the NFL, including right guard, left guard and center. He won the Rimington Trophy in 2016 as a senior at Ohio State, an award given annually to the country’s best center. However, the 6-foot-3, 303-pounder has struggled over the past two years with his pass blocking.

Elflein allowed five quarterback pressures in Week 1 after leading the Vikings with 32 pressures and six sacks allowed in 2019, per Sports Illustrated. He has made 43 career starts (all in Minnesota) after being compared to the Cowboys’ Zach Martin and Travis Frederick coming out of college.

“You are getting a guy who will be great for your locker room and will get the rest of the offensive line on board,” an NFC West scout said of Elflein, via the Vikings’ website. “I think he could have the same fast impact on a team’s running game that Zach Martin had in Dallas. Safe draft pick to me.”

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Eagles Getting Healthier on Offensive Line

Maybe the Eagles don’t need to add any depth or confusion to their offensive line puzzle. Isaac Seumalo is returning to his starting left guard spot this week and starting right tackle Lane Johnson says he expects to “play and function” versus New York.

Meanwhile, right guard Nate Herbig is fully healed up from a finger injury and rookie swing tackle Jack Driscoll (ankle) practiced in full all week. Not to mention, left tackle Jason Peters saw no limitations for a second straight week.

“We haven’t felt like this in a long time and that gives you hope, gives you an excitement and enthusiasm around the team,” head coach Doug Pederson said. “I’m looking forward whenever that day is to be at full strength. If it’s only for a short time, it’s for a short time.”

Eagles Wearing All-White Uniforms in Week 10

The Eagles will be wearing their all-white uniform combination on Sunday. It’s a sleek design against a Giants team they have outright dominated in the Doug Pederson era, including eight straight wins dating back to Dec. 22, 2016. The most recent victory was a 22-21 come-from-behind win in Week 7.

Philadelphia leads the all-time series 88-85-2 over New York. The Giants have talked all week about being extra motivated to beat the Eagles and reverse their recent misfortunes.

“We need to win,” said tight end Evan Engram, via New York Post. “We’ve been on the losing end a lot of times recently. We have an opportunity to change that Sunday. That’s what we’re really focused on. We’re definitely really motivated to be on the winning end this time.”

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