Amid all the comings and going for the Philadelphia Eagles roster this offseason, one sizable loss has gone somewhat unheralded.
Not in the eyes of center Jason Kelce, however, as he doesn't believe there's any replacing guard Isaac Seumalo, who signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers this offseason following seven seasons in Philly.
"I think he's one of the best guards in the NFL, and I think he has been," Kelce told reporters Wednesday. "I think he's one of the most consistent players I've ever been around, one of the most consistent people I've ever been around. So we're not going to replace Isaac, there's going to be someone new in there, and they're going to have their attributes that they're going to excel with, and I'm looking forward to seeing who does a really good job with that."
It's likely to be second-year lineman Cam Jurgens who will be tasked with filling the spot vacated by Seumalo, who put pen to paper on a three-year, $24 million deal with the Steelers in March.
Seumalo's coming off what was likely his best season, as he started every regular-season game for only the second time in his career, largely due to injury. The 29-year-old saw his 2020 and 2021 campaigns end on injured reserve due to knee and Lisfranc injuries, respectively.
A Pro Bowl alternate last season, Seumalo was an often overlooked contributor on one of the very best O-lines in football. Now he'll be looked on to quickly improve a Steelers line that's struggled in past years.
Kelce believes the NFL's other Keystone State squad found a gem in free agency.
"Isaac is a really, really special player," Kelce said. "I know we've said that here for a long time, and I still don't think people really truly grasp what he did for our room. And me personally, I think he's probably the smartest player I've ever been around. Really, really gifted physically, mentally, across the board. So I think the Steelers are getting a steal, that's a good pun, I guess."
Whether it's Jurgens, rookie Tyler Steen or anyone else, Kelce has confidence that somebody will step in and step up next to him and opposite Landon Dickerson. Over the years, that just seems to be the case in Philly and a monumental factor in the franchise's success. Finding a suitable successor to Seumalo will be pivotal in the Eagles hopes for repeating as NFC champions, regardless of the amount of attention it garners.
"We have a number of contenders, I mean the Eagles are always drafting people and bringing in talent on the offensive line, and it's something for me as an offensive lineman that I sure appreciate, because it's a unit, and a lot of times it's only going to be as good as its weakest link," Kelce said. "We've had a lot of really good players, and we've been able to weather injuries, and guys have gone on and had success elsewhere, so I look forward to being in the room, going through this offseason, training camp, and season, and figuring out what this unit's about."
Still, the five-time All-Pro didn't hesitate to underscore Wednesday that the Eagles were dealt a big loss this offseason, and the Steelers added a stellar talent.