Eagles add to depth on offensive line

The offensive line was a major strength for the Philadelphia Eagles last season.

It's a position where you can never have enough depth. And the Eagles added to their depth with the recent signing of Andrew Gardner, a 6-foot-6, 308-pound tackle.

Gardner, who was added to the Eagles' 90-man roster, was taken in the sixth round of the 2009 NFL draft by the Miami Dolphins. The 27-year-old Gardner played at Georgia Tech and had been a part of the Houston Texans for the past three seasons.

Gardner, who has played in just eight career NFL games, also has been on the practice squads of the Baltimore Ravens, Minnesota Vikings and Cincinnati Bengals.

The Eagles boast a deep crop of tackles anchored by All-Pro Jason Peters, Lane Johnson -- who just completed an ultra-successful rookie season -- Dennis Kelly, Michael Bamiro, Matt Tobin and Allen Barbre.

Gardner was named to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference team as a freshman at Georgia Tech and wound up starting 48 games. He was named Honorable Mention All-ACC as a sophomore and then earned All-ACC honors as a junior and senior.

Amazingly, Gardner becomes the eighth Eagle who once played for the Houston Texans. The other players are DeMeco Ryans, Roc Carmichael, Donnie Jones, Bryan Braman, Jeff Maehl, Connor Barwin and James Casey.

Earning his way onto the 53-man roster seems to be a longshot, but this safety valve could be advantageous if they suffer an injury or two.

As of now, it looks as if the Eagles' starting offensive line will consist of Peters and Johnson at tackle, Todd Herremans and Evan Mathis at guard and Jason Kelce at center.

Mathis has reportedly asked for a new contract, yet nothing has materialized. He could also be traded.

Barbre can play both tackle and guard, but there are positions to be won elsewhere. Gardner is certainly capable of competing strongly for one of those spots.