When the Eagles selected rugby league player Jordan Mailata in the 7th round of the 2018 NFL Draft, they knew they were selecting a player with no knowledge of the game of football, but had so much raw potential that they took the chance on him.
On his first ever real football play, Mailata allowed a sack. Ever since that play, Mailata has been looking like a real offensive lineman (albeit facing 3rd and 4th stringed defensive linemen). In fact, his play has improved so vastly, that former NFL offensive lineman Ross Tucker says that Mailata will be an all-pro, and a carbon copy of future Hall-of-Famer Jason Peters.
I no longer think 21 year old Aussie LT Jordan Mailata is going to be a starting LT in the NFL.
I think he's going to be All-Pro.
Borderline obsessed with this dude at this point. This is crazy.
Eagles are going to go right from Peters to Peters Jr.
— Ross Tucker (@RossTuckerNFL) August 31, 2018
Tucker isn’t the only former offensive lineman that has had their eyes opened by watching Mailata, former Eagles offensive lineman Brian Baldinger has been watching him closely, and only has nice things to say when it comes to the Aussie left tackle.
.@Eagles #JordanMailata has shown phenomenal growth in a short period of time. Can’t wait to watch him over the next year. Great coaching going on in So Philly. #BaldyBreakdowns pic.twitter.com/8lO8Vda5wF
— Brian Baldinger (@BaldyNFL) August 24, 2018
Not impressed because the former players weren’t really outstanding offensive lineman themselves? Well former Eagles Pro Bowl LT Tra Thomas also sees Mailata’s potential.
I agree Baldy! https://t.co/wrkagZECZY
— Tra Thomas (@72TraThomas) August 24, 2018
Tired of hearing former players rave about him? Lane Johnson chimed in after last night’s preseason finale and said it’s going to be down-right scary when he has more knowledge underneath his belt.
Lane Johnson is amazed by Jordan Mailata and now far the Aussie rookie former rugby player has come in 4 weeks.
“He’s a freak of nature. He’s just a baby. It’s gonna be scary what he’s gonna be able to do in the next few years.”
— Geoff Mosher (@GeoffMosherNFL) August 31, 2018
If he pans out at all and becomes just a serviceable offensive lineman, Howie Roseman is going to look like even more of a genius to Eagles fans and the rest of the league. Anything more than that and it would just be icing on top of Roseman’s cake.