Potential Cowboys LT Jason Peters Is 40. Is He Still Good?

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jason peters

On Wednesday, it was reported that veteran left tackle Jason Peters visited the Dallas Cowboys team facility in Frisco. Throughout the day, Cowboys fans were eagerly waiting for an alert to pop up on their phones saying Dallas and Peters have inked a deal. But that has yet to happen.

So while we wait for more news to come out, here are three things to consider about the Cowboys potentially adding Peters to the roster:

Does Peters have anything left in the tank?

It’s a fair question. Peters is 40 years old and has played 17 seasons in the NFL. 

But his health, surprisingly, wasn’t an issue last season with the Chicago Bears. Peters started 15 games in 2021 on a Bears team that went 6-11. Chicago’s weakest unit was its offense, which ranked 27th in points per game at 18.3. 

But Peters wasn’t the reason for Chicago’s struggles. This offseason, they fired their general manager Ryan Pace and head coach Matt Nagy.

If you want to evaluate Peters’ 2021 season for yourself, here’s a video featuring 850 of his snaps from last season:

Peters’ best days are certainly behind him. He’s a nine-time Pro Bowler, a two-time All-Pro and a future Hall of Famer. But his last Pro Bowl appearance came in 2016 and he was last an All-Pro in 2013.

But the Bowie County, Texas native still has lots of strength in his 6’4, 328-pound frame. Peters is also a smart and instinctual player; you need both traits to prolong a 17-year NFL career into your 40s.

Where does Peters fit on the depth chart?

Peters would be an instant upgrade at left tackle. If he does sign with Dallas, it’s unclear if he would start Week 1 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. But he’s a smart player and it likely wouldn’t take him long to learn a new offense.

The Cowboys current starter at left tackle is Tyler Smith. But up until Tyron Smith’s injury last week, Tyler had been competing for the starting job at left guard with Connor McGovern. So a majority of Tyler’s snaps this preseason have come at LG, though he was an LT last season at Tulsa.

Tyler is also dealing with a recent high-ankle sprain which has slowed down his transition to LT.

Adding Peters to the roster would make him the starting LT once he’s ready, and it would add depth back to the interior offensive line because Tyler could slide back to LG.

The Cowboys’ current depth at LT is also concerning to say the least. Behind Tyler is fellow rookie Matt Waletzko, who only played in the preseason finale as he’s dealt with a shoulder injury all training camp, and Josh Ball who was drafted in 2021 but didn’t get a single regular season snap last season. 

Relying on three players with no NFL experience to play one of the most pivotal positions on an offense is a recipe for disaster. So signing Peters would add some much-needed positional depth. 

Adding a veteran presence is always a positive

It’s been noted throughout training camp how helpful veterans like Tyron and Zach Martin have been in the development of the younger players on the Cowboys offensive line. Between Peters, Tyron and Martin, they have 36 years of NFL experience.

Having that much knowledge and leadership in the locker room would greatly help the development of the Cowboys young offensive linemen.

So it’s time for Jerry Jones to bust out his checkbook and make Peters a Cowboy. 

Peters also only made a tick over $1 million last season with the Bears, and the Cowboys have the sixth-most cap space available in the NFL at $12.7 million. So money should be a non-factor in contract negotiations with Peters.

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