The story of how bears signed Jason Peters is classic
Jason Peters told the Philadelphia Eagles he plans to play an extra year at the end of last season. It was clear that the future Hall of Famer didn’t want to come out the way they did. Missed eight games with injuries and playing for a 4-12 team. Still a competitor, he wants to come out on a higher note, preferably with a chance to compete for a Super Bowl. This is the main reason he signed with the Chicago Bears.
However, Peters was under no illusions. At 39, he’s old by offensive tackle standards. So the teams weren’t really going to knock on his door with offers. He had to be patient, stay in shape, and wait and see if any opportunity presented itself. Sure enough, it came to fruition when the Bears lost rookie tackle Teven Jenkins to back surgery. Suddenly their left tackle point was in serious danger. Offensive line coach Juan Castillo therefore decided to call an old friend.
The best part is when Peters finally got it.
Peters’ house is in Texas. He and Castillo have a relationship that goes back several years. The Bears offensive line coach was the one who convinced the Philadelphia Eagles to trade the left tackle in 2009. He felt the Buffalo Bills had misused him as a tackle. A record that turned out to be correct in the following years. Castillo therefore decided to call on his old friend again to help him. Peters’ reaction? Invaluable.
Having been around the league long enough, he undoubtedly could have guessed what it was. The Bears were having tackling issues and needed his services. Soon after, the two sides reached an agreement. Now the big man is trying to get rid of the rust as quickly as possible before week 1 in Los Angeles.
Jason Peters can still help the Bears if they are healthy
This is usually the key for guys his age. Only four tackles, including himself, have ever played an NFL game at age 39 or older. None have made it through a full season in good health. So Peters faces a tough battle against Father Time in this one. Especially with the league stretching to a 17-game schedule. Healthy even last year he showed he can still be a more than competent tackle.
All the Bears can do is hope he doesn’t suffer major setbacks. In the meantime, it would be wise for them to continue to develop Larry Borom. The 5th round rookie’s pick was moved to the left tackle at training camp after the team saw how good he looks when it comes to pass protection with his footwork and his speed. They may need him this season if Jason Peters is short on time.
The good news is that the position at least seems settled.
Chicago has been through most of the preseason with guys like Elijah Wilkinson and Lachavious Simmons being their main starters. The results were, as might be expected, difficult to observe. With Peters in the mix and Germain Ifedi finally back from a hip injury, some stability should follow.