Eagles sign ex-Giants OT Will Beatty | What role will he play?

The Eagles have signed former Giants offensive tackle Will Beatty, and released Taylor Hart, the team announced Tuesday.

News of Beatty’s signing was first reported by Adam Schefter and Chris Mortenson of ESPN. 

Beatty, 32, adds a veteran presence as a reserve along an offensive line that previously lost All-Pro left tackle Jason Peters for the season with a torn ACL and MCL back in Week 7 against the Washington Redskins. 

Halapoulivaati Vaitai stepped in to replace Peters and played at a higher level against the Denver Broncos in Week 9 than he did the previous game against the San Francisco 49ers when he surrendered two sacks. 

Tuesday’s signing makes it apparent that the Eagles did not see enough to feel fully confident in Vaitai holding down the starting job the rest of the season with the only competition coming from previously benched guard/tackle Isaac Seumalo. 

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Seumalo entered the season as the Eagles’ starting left guard, but was benched following a Week 2 loss against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Prior to the Eagles adding backup Taylor Hart in free agency two days after Peters’ injury, Seumalo was the only backup offensive lineman other than Vaitai with experience playing tackle. 

Hart was inactive for both of the games that he was on the roster for since signing with the Eagles last month. 

The Eagles previously showed interest in Beatty last season when right tackle Lane Johnson was suspended 10 games for violating the NFL’s Performance Enhancing Drug policy. 

After missing the entire 2015 season with a torn pectoral muscle, Beatty appeared as a backup blocking tight end in six games last season. 

Adding Beatty gives the Eagles the confidence in keeping Johnson at right tackle, even if Vaitai gets injured, as well as a reserve capable of stepping in at right tackle at moment’s notice. 

Matt Lombardo may be reached at MLombardo@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @MattLombardoPHL.

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