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Chip Kelly likes that Lane Johnson is a raw tackle

2013 NFL Draft Getty Images

When Lane Johnson got to Oklahoma after junior college, he was a quarterback without much of an idea of where the Sooners planned to play him.

He wound up at tackle and played it well enough to wind up as the fourth overall pick of the draft on Thursday night. That suggested the Eagles aren’t put off by the fact that he’s still in the process of learning how to play the position, something coach Chip Kelly confirmed when speaking to the media after the selection. In fact, Kelly said that the Eagles were attracted to Johnson because of how much room he still has to grow.

“I think he is ready, but he is raw,” Kelly said, via Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “We look at raw as a positive, not a negative. If he’s doing what he’s doing right now, and he’s only played like two years on the offensive line … We felt that his ceiling is probably the highest.”

Johnson’s athleticism and the promise it holds for his ability to get down the field or out wide against pass rushers must be appealing to the Eagles. While we don’t know exactly what the NFL version of his offense will look like, it’s a good bet that the ability to do those things will come in handy. Assuming his growing pains aren’t of the variety that lead to stretchers for the quarterback, the Eagles will swallow them happily for a chance to see Johnson reach that ceiling.

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20 Responses to “Chip Kelly likes that Lane Johnson is a raw tackle”
  1. seabreezes51 says: Apr 26, 2013 9:23 AM

    He won’t have a lot of bad habits to break.
    I’m happy with the pick. Today’s picks are the make and break picks

  2. eaglesw00t says: Apr 26, 2013 9:34 AM

    I think the Eagles are a much better team with Lane Johnson on it, than they would be if Dion Jordan were.

    We already have a bunch of pass rushers, and not enough linemen. Fischer was my top choice, but the more I think about Johnsons ceiling, the happier I am that we were able to get him.

    Hopefully, he is our Tra Thomas of this decade, and locks down LT after Peters is done for a decade.

  3. cmoney20 says: Apr 26, 2013 9:50 AM

    Just like the players said “Chip Kelly will revolutionize the game” Our RT will be throwing bombs to James Casey before you know it.

  4. icdogg says: Apr 26, 2013 9:51 AM

    Speaking of raw talent, I was hoping for Ziggy, but Johnson was my next favorite choice.

    What I liked about both of those guys, is that despite their inexperience, they play with violence. That is the difference between a workout wonder and a prospect that I would want to have.

    I was not a big proponent of Dion Jordan, liked him but not that much. Was glad Miami took him off the Eagles’ radar.

  5. fantom21 says: Apr 26, 2013 10:12 AM

    Raw enough to cause his fragile QB to get osakpoed!! Osakpo will eat this guy “raw”with a side of fava beans and nice chianti!! HTTR!!! #NFCEASTCHAMPS

  6. hehateme2 says: Apr 26, 2013 10:20 AM

    Sure.. you always want a “raw” prospect with the 4th pick. This guy has a lot to learn.

  7. reasonablemindsays says: Apr 26, 2013 10:38 AM

    The ignorant Redskins fans are so good at giving themselves away. The second you see a hashtag in a post you know everything they write will be worthless.

  8. andyreidisthegoat says: Apr 26, 2013 10:49 AM

    Do you want raw at 4. No. The pick wasn t jordan either. His pencil frame will be a disaster. The pick at 3 and 4 should have been shariff floyd. This guy is a proven beast in the sec. Minnesota stole this kid. He was by far the best defensive player in the draft. As a cowboys fan I am ready to jump on the eagles ban wagon after that display by jerry last night. Terrible trade to start and then a reach on a player to boot. I have seen enough from jerry. Should have taken the gift of flloyd at 18 and called it 1st rd.

  9. zwilhelm16 says: Apr 26, 2013 10:52 AM

    Redskins have one above average season and now there fans think there the class of the NFC. And last time i check there QB is pretty fragile as well considering he can hardly walk right now. Hope you fans enjoyed that one 9-7 record cuz you guys won’t be above .500 again for another 15 years.

  10. redhoteagle says: Apr 26, 2013 11:04 AM

    Lane Johnson has showed improvement each year he played tackle and can play both sides. Dude is quick and athletic…..

    Alabama is known for their O-line and RBs and remember our new O-line coach is Jeff Stoutland (Nick Saban’s offensive line coach the last 2 years).

    Stoutland ran an offensive line that did a phenomenal job in a pro-style offense as the Crimson Tide won the national championship in both of his seasons with the team. I think Stoutland and Lane is a match made in Heaven- just saying.

  11. gonavybeatarmy says: Apr 26, 2013 11:15 AM

    Chip Kelly knows nothing about the NFL.

  12. bobonmycob says: Apr 26, 2013 11:31 AM

    gonavybeatarmy says: Apr 26, 2013 11:15 AM

    Chip Kelly knows nothing about the NFL.

    Do you think before you type? Like at all? Philadelphia is a top 5 media market team meaning we are in the spot light more then 27 other teams. Howie knows his stuff and if you think for one second that the eagles took a risk on Chip and just handed him millions of dollars to play a guessing game you are very wrong. Chip will be fine in the NFL. And you will still be a clueless football fan.

  13. rkt4mayor says: Apr 26, 2013 12:29 PM

    As an Eagles fan who has been very skeptical about the Chip Kelly hiring and Andy Reid firing, I must say that I was pleasantly surprised by the way the Eagles conducted themselves in the 1st round:

    They shored up their offensive line nicely. Now we can move Herremans back to his natural guard position and have Johnson play right tackle.

    Very nice pick by the Eagles and I agree that Lane Johnson could turn out to be the best tackle in this draft.

  14. bigdinla says: Apr 26, 2013 1:01 PM

    You know how to spot a bad pick? Eagles fans like it.

  15. robbietheus says: Apr 26, 2013 2:15 PM

    I actually love this pick. We needed to sure up that line. I hope that we don’t reach on a Qb. I like Foles as the starter and so what if he doesn’t “fit” Chip Kelly’s scheme, Tom Brady runs that New England offense just fine and he’s no scrambler. Not saying Foles is the next Brady, but why reach on a Qb this year when we can get our defense right and get the offense some new toys? Ok, just tell me who in this draft is better than foles other than EJ who is no longer available?

  16. greymares says: Apr 26, 2013 2:51 PM

    @andyreidisfat: Shariff Floyd will be the biggest bust of this draft no upper body strength and poor work ethic that’s why he dropped like a bag of rocks

  17. therealtrenches says: Apr 26, 2013 3:12 PM

    Thing is, watch a YouTube of this guy; he’s such a natural athlete that there are entire plays where he doesn’t look raw at all.

    The kid’s a winner.

  18. o0omorriso0o says: Apr 26, 2013 3:44 PM

    @robbietheus

    Foles is nothing special… He is not gonna be the starter, vick will be and i truly think vick is the better qb and will play quite well in chips offensive scheme. Might not be the popular opinion but i seriously feel its the truth… Swallow it and get used to it

  19. andyreidisthegoat says: Apr 26, 2013 3:49 PM

    @greymares

    I strongly disagree. They said similar things about warren sapp.

  20. jrmalo23 says: Apr 27, 2013 12:12 AM

    #redskinsfanssuck

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