I keep hearing it. I keep reading it.
“It doesn’t matter where Jason Peters plays because he’ll only last a few snaps.”
“J.P. is playing left tackle? For how long, a quarter?”
“So I guess Pryor is the option at LT when JP gotta leave the game in the 3Q?”
These are all real tweets and there were a ton more, and I think people are getting a little carried away with the “J.P. is always hurt narrative.”
Because it’s not accurate and it’s not fair.
This whole J.P. is always hurt thing conveniently ignores the fact that just about everybody on this roster has been hurt at some point the last couple years.
And J.P. has played a lot more football for the Eagles than a lot of other guys who aren’t constantly mocked for their injuries.
When everybody else gets hurt, everybody says the training and medical staff should be fired. When J.P. gets hurt, everybody says he’s too old.
Would you ideally like a left tackle who never misses a snap? Sure. But not many players on this team at any position don’t miss a snap.
The last few years, Brandon Graham, Malcolm Jenkins, Fletcher Cox and Jason Kelce have been official ironmen, but it’s not like Peters has never been out there.
Peters, who moves back to left tackle this week after starting training camp at right guard, has started 29 of 32 regular-season games the last two years. Only 10 left tackles in the NFL have started more games, and 22 offensive tackles overall have started more.
So he’s in the upper third at his position.
Including the playoffs, J.P. has started 32 of 35 games the last two seasons. Only six Eagles have started more — Kelce, Jenkins, Graham and Cox have started all 35 and Zach Ertz and Brandon Brooks have started 34, and Brooks missed the playoffs last year and is out again indefinitely.
Nobody ever says “LANE JOHNSON IS ALWAYS HURT.” But Peters has actually played more games than Lane the last two years.
When Brooks gets hurt, he’s a warrior who’s doing all he can to get healthy and make it back before the end of the year. And that's all true. He is.
When Peters hobbles off the field and gets taped up and guts it out and makes it back onto the field for the next series, he’s old and broken down.
See the double-standard?
Let’s look at the last couple years:
2018: Peters was one of only eight Eagles to start all 18 games. He only missed more than six snaps in four of those games. He was one of 26 NFL tackles to start all 16 regular-season games.
2019: Yes, J.P. missed three games in the middle of the season with a knee injury. But over the last eight games of the season, he played 664 of 672 snaps — that’s 99 percent.
The irony here is that Peters is here because Brooks is hurt and he’s at left tackle because Dillard is hurt.
Brooks and Dillard will both miss more games this year than Peters has missed combined since 2013, his first year back from the Achilles injury.
Where is the outcry about them always being hurt?
There’s a lot at play here.
In a way, Peters is a victim of his former greatness. He’s not the all-pro he used to be. He just isn’t. And you can’t expect him to be. He’s 38 years old now and when he plays like an above average left tackle instead of a Hall of Famer, it’s easy to dismiss him as washed up.
The Jason Peters I saw last year, especially down the stretch, is still one of the top dozen left tackles in the league.
And if he’s not out there every single snap? If he misses a couple games here and there? If he shows his age once in a while?
We should all be able to live with it.
Because I’ll take Jason Peters 85 percent of the time than a whole lot of other guys 100 percent of the time.