It seemed curious on Saturday morning when Eagles head coach Doug Pederson hesitated to say Jason Peters would be their left tackle after Andre Dillard went down for the season.
Now we know why.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane, if Peters is going to play left tackle, he wants to be paid like a starting left tackle.
The Eagles signed Peters, 38, this offseason but only after Brandon Brooks went down with injury. The Eagles signed him to a 1-year, $3 million deal to be their starting right guard. That’s half of what Peters got paid in 2019 to be the starting left tackle on a renegotiated deal.
Here’s what Pederson said about the left tackle position on Saturday morning:
“In regard to left tackle, Jason Peters is obviously in the conversation. We do have some young players, Jordan Mailata, Matt Pryor, Jack Driscoll, who's a rookie obviously but playing some tackle for us. But we've got a couple of guys now including Jason Peters that we want to look at over at the left side. J.P. has done an outstanding job, coming in, playing the right guard spot. We're going to continue to look at him there, as well, but we have some options. We've got a couple of days here before, one, roster cuts, but obviously getting into the regular season.”
On Saturday at practice, Peters lined up at right guard.
Here’s how Peters’ $3 million guaranteed deal in 2020 breaks down:
Base salary: $1.8 million
Signing bonus: $1 million
Per game roster bonuses: $200K
Peters also has the potential to earn $3 million more in incentives, combinations of playing time, playoff berth, Super Bowl, Pro Bowl and All-Pro.
But apparently that’s not good enough for Peters. This has the potential to be a very tricky situation. The Eagles are already thin when it comes to veteran offensive line depth.
As of Saturday afternoon, the Eagles have $23,171,612 in available cap room in 2020. So they have the money to pay Peters, but they’re also counting on carrying over a significant chunk of that into 2021.
Peters, according to OverTheCap, is the 20th-highest paid right guard in the NFL. His $3 million salary would rank him 31st among left tackles.
According to OTC, Peters has earned over $111 million during his 15-year NFL career and nearly $100 million from the Eagles.
Coming into this offseason, the Eagles were ready to go forward with Dillard at left tackle so they let Peters walk. They kept in contact with him but expected him to be signed. That didn’t happen and then they brought him back when Brooks went down. Now, when they could really use him at left tackle, it appears it won’t be that simple.