It took a while, but Isaac Seumalo finally has a new home.
One of the few remaining players from the 2016 Eagles, Seumalo signed a three-year contract with the Steelers, according to NFL reporter Jordan Schultz.
The Eagles were never involved in talks with Seumalo, who started 60 games for the Eagles and is one of only seven players to play in both the 2017 and 2022 Super Bowls.
When healthy, Seumalo is a very good player, but injuries have derailed his 2020 and 2021 seasons, when he played just 12 games in total. He bounced back to start all 20 games this year and played at a very high level.
With Cam Jurgens, the Eagles’ second-round pick in 2022, waiting in the wings to take over at center or right depending on what Jason Kelce did along with Seumalo’s expected big contract and the Eagles’ cap troubles, there was never a chance Seumalo would return to the Eagles for an eighth year.
Contract terms were not immediately available. Spotrac predicted Seumalo at $12 million a year, but given that we’re almost a week into free agency and the security guard market isn’t that busy, the deal is probably worth less than that.
Former Raven Ben Powers signed a four-deal worth about $12.9 million a year with the Broncos, but he is the only guard to date over $10 million a year. And Powers is exactly three years younger than 29-year-old Seumalo (both born October 29).
But Seumalo is very good. Pro Football Focus ranked him 10th of 79 guards who played at least 300 snaps in the past year with a 72.7 rating.
Seumalo was originally the Eagles’ third-round pick in 2016. He began the 2017 Super Bowl season as the starting left guard, but lost his job to Stefen Wisniewski four games into the season and spent the rest of the year as a backup.
He regained the job midway through the 2018 season and stayed there through 2021. After Landon Dickerson blossomed at left guard in 2021 while Seumalo was out, Seumalo switched to right guard this year and played well as Dickerson made the Pro Bowl in his second years as a starter.
Seumalo’s 60 starts with the guard are eighth in Eagles history, behind Ron Baker (106), Todd Herremans (96), Jim Skaggs (77), Wade Key (74), Jermane Mayberry (74), Mark Nordquist (65 ), Brandon Brooks (64) and Steve Kenney (63).
With Dickerson — who turns 25 in September — and Jurgens — who turns 24 in August — the Eagles have their youngest pair of full-time starting guards since 2006, when Herremans and Shawn Andrews were both 24.
With Seumalo leaving for Pittsburgh, only seven players remain on the 2017 Super Bowl season roster: Jason Kelce, Brandon Graham and Fletcher Cox, all of whom signed annual contracts last week, as well as Lane Johnson, Derek Barnett and specialists Jake Elliott and Rick Lovato.
In addition to starters Dickerson and Jurgens, the Eagles have Jack Driscoll and Sua Opeta on their roster as veteran backups. Driscoll started with 16 games and Opeta with five.
In Pittsburgh, Seumalo rejoins guard Nate Herbig, his teammate with the Eagles from 2019 through 2021. Herbig spent last year with the Jets. Both became Eagles during the Eagles front office tenure of current Steelers assistant general manager Andy Weidl.
The Eagles have now lost six starters to the 2022 NFC champions: Javon Hargrave (49ers), TJ Edwards (Bears), Marcus Epps (Raiders), Kyzir White (Cards), Miles Sanders (Panthers), and Seumalo (Steelers). backups Gardner Minshew (Colts) and Andre Dillard (Titans).
They have signed Kelce, Cox and Graham, as well as James Bradberry, Boston Scott, Rashaad Penny, Greedy Williams and Marcus Mariota.