WHEN you have a weapon that nobody else has, you’re almost obligated to cram it down your rival’s throats. It’s almost a requirement to put on vulgar displays of power, and abuse the privilege of the small window that exists until the arms race equalizes. Or maybe that’s just me.
Such is the case with OT Jordan Mailata. No other team in the NFL has anything like Mailata. So we need to be about the business of letting the other 31 teams know that we have him, they don’t, and then educate them on exactly what that means.
Ostensibly, Mailata was brought here to play Offensive Tackle, but that’s not what got him noticed. Prior to being drafted by the Eagles in 2018, he’d never played a down of pro, college, or even high school AMERICAN style, football. In his entire rookie season last year, he never stepped foot on the field. Even on Special Teams.
In 2017 He caught the Front Office’s eye as a rugby player in Australia. (Which lets you know how thorough the Eagles Scouting department is.) He was damned near unstoppable with the ball in his hands, displaying a level of athleticism that is unheard of in 346 pound men who don’t play in the NFL.
To be fair, I can’t say I’ve seen it in the NFL either. Which is why I say give him the ball. Adopt and adapt the tactic of using, practically abusing, all of our unfair advantages. I’d like to see him report as tackle-eligible for a few plays, lining up as an H-Back. Then get the ball into his hands, in short yardage situations.
There’s no need to do anything crazy. Short pass here, a Toss Run there. There’s that Middle Shovel Pass that Chiefs TE Travis Kelce made popular a couple years ago.
And of course we could just motion him into the backfield and hand the damned thing off to him.
Oh yeah, and let’s not forget, he’s actually a blocker! If he lines up at H-back, things like the H-Back Iso are there for the taking.
It would be a way to get Mailata into live action, while LT Jason Peters is still here to mentor him.
And you know what the best part would be? When teams didn’t know if they needed to fight off his block or cover him. Spread out, to account for him. Or pack in, to cause a pile-up? It would be hard for opponents to be effective in short yardage defense, if they were second guessing themselves the whole time before the ball is snapped.
We can do that to them. We already have the player. All we have to do, is do it. We have an unfair advantage here. We need to use it.