Jason Peters will remain an Eagle, likely until he retires.
The future Hall of Fame left tackle will continue to suit up in midnight green until 2019, as he inked a three-year, $32.5 million deal with $15.5 guaranteed Wednesday. The move is expected to be structured in a way that gives the Eagles a little more breathing room as they sport the league’s least salary cap space.
With his run-blocking expertise and ability to protect Carson Wentz’ blind side, the Eagles will do whatever it takes to keep him on the field until his age-37 season.
“I think with his size, his athleticism, strength — gosh, the way he comes off the ball would be a great asset really anywhere along that offensive line, but guard could be a potential spot down the road,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said.
Whether or not he plays guard in the future, the Eagles are more or less stacked at offensive line at present. Peters joins stout veterans Jason Kelce and Lane Johnson anchoring a line with great depth at guard — as Allen Barbre, Brandon Brooks, Isaac Seumalo, Chance Warmack and Stephen Wisniewski all add insurance and skill protecting the Eagles skill players.
“I think it’s huge to have your offensive line intact that way, especially a guy like Jason Kelce in the middle,” the coach said. “He’s the field general for that group and he’s a smart guy and he gets the guys going in the right direction. And he and Carson have a great relationship in IDing things defensively: protections, runs, things of that nature. And now having Jason [Peters] anchored there on the left side just gives you a comfort factor on your backside being a right-handed a quarterback. I know the feeling, back in the day, having those Tra Thomases over there or the Jon Runyans on the right side. To have those anchors on the edges gives you more comfort as a pocket passer and someone that can just take advantage of those guys being the core of your offensive line.”
Wentz, in his second season, will be able to rely on consistency and familiarity up front, two attributes that will undoubtedly help him grow into a franchise player as his career in Philadelphia continues.
The quarterback was able to play behind Peters for the entire season, impressive for a large physical player who is in his mid-30s. It seems the team may have found a good formula to keep him and other important veterans healthy and on the field.
“I know that the way we handled him last year, he started 16 games for us; he was a Pro Bowl left tackle,” Pederson said. “Those are some of the same things we’ve got to continue to do this year with him, same way with Brent Celek and other guys on the team. We were able to manage their reps and keep them healthy for 16 weeks. So, we’ll try to keep that same formula going.”