Eagles

After signing 1-year extension, Jason Peters expects to retire as an Eagle

After signing 1-year extension, Jason Peters expects to retire as an Eagle

As Jason Peters returned to the NovaCare Complex this week for mandatory minicamp, the future Hall of Famer expressed his desire to retire as an Eagle.

After signing a one-year extension, Peters is convinced that's going to happen. 

"Yes," Peters said just off the field Wednesday. "No doubt.

"I don't think I'm going to go that much longer. Three-year extension. I'm going to give them everything I've got."

Peters, 35, is coming off his ninth Pro Bowl season and seventh with the Eagles. In recent history, it's been very rare for great Eagles to end their careers in Philadelphia (see story), but now that Peters is locked up through 2019, he has a real chance. 

His one-year extension, which includes an $8 million signing bonus and is worth $32.5 million over three years with $15.5 million guaranteed, according to a league source, offers him more contract stability, something he admitted he wanted earlier this week.

Does Peters think he'll play out all three years on his deal? 

"I'm year-to-year. I feel good," he said. "I feel like I got more than three years. But it's just a three-year extension and I'm going to keep going, trying to chase a ring."

Last season, Peters was able to play all 16 games thanks to the way his health was managed by first-year head coach Doug Pederson. Peters estimated the coaching staff saved him from taking over 200 extra reps throughout the season. It led to a bounce-back year for the Pro Bowler. 

Peters arrived in Philadelphia in 2009 after five seasons in Buffalo. He entered the league as an undrafted tight end from Arkansas but has built an impressive Hall of Fame résumé as an offensive tackle. He's been a Pro Bowler in nine of the last 10 years, missing just 2012, when an Achilles injury forced him to miss the season. 

The personal success Peters has achieved in the NFL is undeniable, but team success hasn't followed. 

He never made it to the playoffs with the Bills and has been to the playoffs just three times with the Eagles, suffering wild-card losses in 2009, 2010 and 2013. Peters has never won a playoff game, but he's hoping Carson Wentz will be his ticket to get a ring. While he couldn't say if he'd want to stick around if Wentz hadn't arrived, having a franchise quarterback certainly provides some stability. 

What does he think about his chance to win a Super Bowl? 

"I think it's good," he said. "We've got a good team this year. Good quarterbacks, good skill position, good line, good defense. We got a good chance. We just got to put it in place Week 1."

Peters' signing an extension will obviously push back the date for when Lane Johnson ultimately takes over his post at left tackle. But Peters said he'd be willing to move to guard at some point if the team wanted him to and Pederson brought up that same possibility earlier in the day (see story)

For now, having Peters at left tackle and Johnson at right is their best bet. While the Cowboys' offensive line is considered to be the best unit in the league, Peters thinks his offensive line is close. 

"We're right there with them," Peters said. "We don't have a lot of first-round picks, but we're right there tit-for-tat with them."

Peters made sure to thank Eagles owner Jeff Lurie several times on Wednesday. He has an extremely close relationship with the billionaire owner, saying the two are "best friends." 

While Peters and Lurie could be cast on a TV remake of "The Odd Couple," Peters seems indebted to the man who brought him to Philly and pushed to make sure he stayed here. Peters said the two talk about football and life. 

Those conversations will get to continue at the facility for another few years. And maybe Peters really will get to retire as an Eagle. 

Why is he so loyal to Philadelphia? 

"The fans, the organization," Peters said. "The fans deserve a Super Bowl, playoffs, make the Linc rock, get home-field and go from there. Like I said, the city of Philly deserves it."

How Eagles could shut down Vikings' receiving duo

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USA Today Images

How Eagles could shut down Vikings' receiving duo

When you think about the best wide receivers in the NFL today, names like Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, and DeAndre Hopkins come to mind and rightfully so, but the Minnesota Vikings have a pair of wideouts who have given opposing secondaries fits.

This season, Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs have been the perfect complement to each other. Thielen finished the regular season with 91 receptions (eighth-best in the league), 1276 yards (fifth-best) and his 20 catches for 20 or more yards tied for fifth-best overall. As for Diggs, he finished with 64 receptions for 849 yards.

Together, Thielen and Diggs accounted for 54 percent of the Vikings' receiving yards this season. They also combined for 12 touchdowns. In the Vikes' miraculous playoff win over the New Orleans Saints, they accounted for 66 percent of the passing game. They have been the safety valves for Case Keenum all season long.

Minnesota offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur has the rare luxury of lining up either one of them on the inside or outside on any given play. Both are excellent route runners — whether it's doing deep or intermediate routes or crossing routes, and both are excellent blockers.

So how should Jim Schwartz defend against these two? Some believe help over the top on Thielen and playing single coverage on Diggs is the way to go. We may see that concept occasionally in the NFC Championship Game but I have a feeling Schwartz will come up with some variation we have not seen before. The Eagles are not going to completely shut these two down, but their damage can be minimized. Ronald Darby, Jalen Mills, Patrick Robinson and the other DBs will put in a full day’s work shadowing these two.

Howie Roseman honored for his tremendous offseason

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AP Images

Howie Roseman honored for his tremendous offseason

As the Eagles practiced on Thursday afternoon, just a few days before hosting the NFC Championship Game at Lincoln Financial Field, vice president of football operations Howie Roseman stood next to owner Jeff Lurie and watched the team he created. 

Of the 53 members on the Eagles' roster heading into this championship game, 25 weren't on the active roster last season. Roseman had a very busy offseason, molding the Eagles into a Super Bowl contender. 

For his efforts, the 42-year-old Roseman, who began with the Eagles as an intern in 2000, has been named the NFL Executive of the Year by the Pro Football Writers of America. 

Roseman helped turn over a roster that went 7-9 last season into a team that went 13-3, earning the first-overall seed in the NFC. He built the team with enough depth to survive major injuries to Carson Wentz, Jason Peters, Darren Sproles, Jordan Hicks, Chris Maragos and Caleb Sturgis. 

Never afraid to make a trade, Roseman came back from his time away from football operations more aggressive than ever. He claims his year away from GM duties while Chip Kelly took over was both humbling and eye-opening. 

For this season, Roseman traded 25 spots in the third round to bring in veteran defensive tackle Tim Jernigan, traded away Jordan Matthews and a pick to bring in cornerback Ronald Darby and pulled the trigger on a midseason move to bring in Pro Bowl running back Jay Ajayi. 

In free agency, he signed Alshon Jeffery, Chris Long, LeGarrette Blount, Nick Foles, Patrick Robinson and Chance Warmack. He brought in several of those players on one-year prove-it deals, and for the most part, the team has gotten more than their money's worth out of them. 

He also helped hire VP of player personnel Joe Douglas to revamp the scouting department. That hire of a top personnel man was one of the conditions when Lurie reinstated Roseman to power following Kelly's dismissal. 

Roseman and Douglas spearheaded drafting a class that included Derek Barnett in the first round, an injured Sidney Jones in the second and some other contributors in the next five rounds. 

Aside from just bringing players in, Roseman has been able to manipulate the salary cap better than anyone in the league. It's been a strength of his since his arrival in Philly, so that should be no surprise. 

You could actually argue that Roseman's 2016 was more impressive. That's when he laid the groundwork for this playoff season by moving up and drafting Carson Wentz. But 2017 is when it all came together.