By Peter Gleason

If you are among those who are wondering why Eagles Supreme Leader Chip Kelly didn’t move in the offseason to supplement the offensive line after he cut guards Todd Herremans (above) and Evan Mathis:

“The price tag of what was available in free agency was more than we were willing to pay,” Kelly said prior to Wednesday’s practice at the NovaCare Complex.

After letting both Herremans and Mathis walk, the Eagles turned to Andrew Gardner and Allen Barbre to take their places at right guard and left guard respectively. With Gardner lost for the season with a foot injury, the only remaining options are Matt Tobin, Dennis Kelly and Julian Vandervelde.

“I thought it was good,” Kelly said of the team’s offensive line depth. “But I also don’t think you can just take players for the sake of taking players. We didn’t have an offensive lineman drafted with a third round grade.

“If we take them, we wouldn’t have Jordan Hicks right now. There’s always after the fact you can say this or you can say that. We’re not going to reach and take things just for the sake of taking things.”

The fact is the aging guards who were cut —Herremans, who was benched this week by Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, and Mathis, who found a spot in Denver — would have made much of a difference.

Kelly admitted that adding to the offensive line could be a possibility, even after re-signing Julian Vandervelde this week, explaining that ideally the team would employ nine offensive linemen but finding a roster spot is a challenge due to the injuries to Kiko Alonso and Mychal Kendricks at inside linebacker.

“If you get an injury somewhere you have to compensate somewhere else,” Kelly explained. “In the ideal world we’d like to have nine offensive linemen on the 53 but right now we can’t do that.”

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