The Eagles answered their biggest offseason question on Monday.
Jason Peters is back.
The Eagles on Monday signed their 37-year-old future Hall of Fame left tackle to a one-year contract in 2019. The one-year deal is worth a maximum of $10 million, with $5 1/2 million guaranteed, according to Peters’ agent, Vincent Taylor of Elite Loyalty Sports.
This move makes a ton of sense. It was easy to say the Eagles should have moved on from Peters, but they didn’t have a great option to replace him yet.
It sounds risky to rely on a 37-year-old tackle, but de facto GM Howie Roseman put it best at the combine a couple weeks ago:
“He’s not a normal human being. He’s freaky. He’s a first-ballot Hall of Fame as a player and as a person. So normal rules don’t apply when it comes to Jason.”
This new deal will allow the Eagles to keep their left tackle, while also lowering his salary cap hit from over $13 million next season. That would have been the price had the Eagles exercised his option year. Instead, they found another way that will save at least several million dollars in cap space.
When healthy, Peters was actually pretty good last season. No, he wasn’t at his former All-Pro level, but 80 percent of Jason Peters is still pretty good. The big problem was that he struggled to finish games. He started all 16, but dealt with lingering injuries throughout the season and played 79 percent of snaps during the regular season.
But later in the 2018 season, Peters said he started to feel healthier as he got further away from the ACL injury that ended his 2017 season early.
Since he arrived in 2009, Peters is the longest-tenured player on the roster. If he plays in all 16 games again this season, he will move into 16th-place all time in games played with the franchise. He has played in 127 games in 10 seasons with the Eagles and has been named to seven Pro Bowls in those 10 seasons.
Had the Eagles moved on from Peters this offseason, their best option would have been to start Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Jordan Mailata or a draft pick coming in April. Mailata might be the future, but he’s still relatively new to American football. Maybe 2020 is more realistic.
For now, here’s how the Eagles’ 2019 offensive line looks: Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks (recovering from Achilles tear) and Lane Johnson. That’s pretty good if Peters can stay healthy.
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