Jason Peters and Carson Wentz lived parallel lives there for a while.
Peters tore his ACL in October of 2017 and Wentz tore his knee about six weeks later.
Both spent countless hours with the Eagles’ trainers, in the weight room, grinding tirelessly to try to get back for the 2018 season.
They did get there. But they just weren't quite the same.
Peters was back by Week 1 and Wentz by Week 3, but neither played the way they had before their injuries.
Peters started all 18 games but missed 238 snaps or an average of 13 per game. He missed plays in 11 of those 18 games and for the first time since 2006 he failed to make the Pro Bowl in a season in which he played more than seven games.
Wentz missed the first two games while rehabbing the knee and the last three plus the postseason with a back injury and although his stats were fine, he never had the explosion and fluidity that had him in the MVP race late in 2017.
Me and him were just talking yesterday about the knee,” Peters said. “You can’t beat science. When they say 16, 18 months, that’s what it’s going to take to try to come back. I came back I want to say eight (months) was training camp for me and 10 was the season and it just wasn’t as strong as I could get it, but I made it through the season not damaging it anymore.
Peters spoke after practice Tuesday with NBC Sports Philadelphia’s John Clark.
He said part of his motivation this year, which will be his 17th in the NFL, is to shut up the people who doubted him while he struggled through last season.
No doubt,” he said. “I finished up last year in the playoffs against the Saints and went out the last series, but we could have made another run to the Super Bowl. I just played all year last year hurt, you know, trying to just grind it out. I gave up a couple plays here and there and you know how it is in Philly: ‘He ain’t got it no more.’ It’s just a big comeback year for me. Just to show everybody I still got it. I shouldn’t have to. But I had a down year last year with that knee injury. … You know how it is. Every year you’ve got to have a good year here in Philly or you’re going to get down-talked.
Wentz and Peters both have plenty to prove.
Peters, who made the Pro Bowl all nine years from 2007 through 2016 that he played, wants to prove he’s still one of the NFL’s dominating left tackles.
And Wentz is trying to prove that his magical 13-game stretch to open the 2017 season wasn’t a fluke, and that he can lead a team deep into the playoffs like his pal Nick Foles.
Two torn ACLs, two healthy superstars, two guys with a lot at stake.
Neither former Pro Bowler missed a snap during training camp because of an injury and both look fantastic with opening day 18 days before the season opener.
He’s smooth," Peters said of Wentz. "A whole lot smoother. Me as well. Coming off the knee injuries it takes a year plus to be 100 (percent) and I feel good, he feel good, he’s real smooth, he’s getting the ball out, throwing the ball as well as I’ve seen him throw it since his rookie year. The deep ball is real nice going to D-Jack. Every time I look up it’s a touchdown.
The Eagles won a Super Bowl without Wentz or Peters. They’re both doing everything they can to make sure they don't miss the next one.
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