Eagles' Jason Peters going 'full tilt' after injury

Left Tackle Jason Peters was a full participant in Friday's practice and is being counted on to anchor the Eagles offensive line.
Left Tackle Jason Peters was a full participant in Friday's practice and is being counted on to anchor the Eagles offensive line. (ED HILLE / Staff Photographer)
Posted: July 28, 2013

When Eagles coaches watch Jason Peters, they have a hard time coming up with an apt description. When they try to cite a precedent for his quick recovery from injuries, they have a hard time finding a comparison.

Peters, 31, who is 6-foot-4, 340 pounds, has five Pro Bowl selections on his resumé and a reputation as one of the NFL's top left tackles. He's a converted tight end who moves as well as any left tackle.

But Peters is recovering from an Achilles tendon that was twice ruptured in 2012. That injury is difficult to recover from, even without Peters' heft or years. Yet he was a full participant in Friday's practice, and is being counted on to anchor the offensive line.

"I'm full tilt," Peters said. "Ain't no monitoring it. I'm out there and I'm going. . . . That's the way I'm going to go. The doctors said there ain't no limits. It don't even get sore, so I'm just going to go and play it out."

Peters did not appear to show any noticeable signs of injury. Peters said he heard that about 30 percent of players who suffer a ruptured Achilles never return to the NFL, but he was confident in his rehabilitation.

"I think he's an exception to every rule," coach Chip Kelly said. "I don't think studying guys that have had Achilles injuries and saying, 'Hey, that guy would be like Jason' [would work]. I know he didn't have any ill effects when he was here during the spring, and he hasn't shown anything. He's not getting any extra treatment or anything like that."

Kelly said the coaches are in awe of Peters' athleticism, and the same athleticism he saw Peters show on tape from 2011 is present this summer. Offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland used to show college players film of Peters as the prototype.

"I don't think there is a player like him in the world, to be honest with you, someone that big, that fast, that athletic," Kelly said. "I catch myself in practice just going, 'Wow.'  He's 350 pounds, and he runs like he's a tight end."

The Eagles never seemed to recover from the offseason loss of Peters last year. His presence alone helps bolster the team. And despite all the changes during his absence, Peters sounded confident Friday that the Eagles will not be as bad as they were without him.

"I guarantee we'll win more than four games," Peters said. "That's probably the worst we could have did, when we won four last year."

Peters said he wasn't worried about his status this year after he was charged with drag racing and resisting an officer by flight in June. Those charges were dropped, but Peters was assessed a fine of $656.50 for driving with an illegal muffler, authorities told the Inquirer earlier this month.

"It wasn't nothing major," Peters said. "It was a ticket."

Peters called Kelly to explain what happened after the arrest. He said he wanted to keep the conversation private, but summarized Kelly's message as, "Don't worry about it. Get ready for training camp." When Kelly was asked earlier this week if Peters would be disciplined, the coach said no, Peters' issue was only a "speeding ticket."

As Kelly desired, Peters arrived ready for camp, though he said after practice that he was "rusty." Nothing seemed evident to the naked eye, but Peters said that when he watches the film, he'll see footwork that can be improved.

That will come with time. The key for the Eagles is that he's a full participant one year after twice sustaining an injury that could have jeopardized his career.

"It was a mind deal," Peters said. "Sometimes guys hurt themselves and it plays on them. I felt I rehabbed good and went out there full tilt."

Click here for complete coverage of Philadelphia Eagles training camp.

Contact Zach Berman at zberman@phillynews.com. Follow on Twitter @ZBerm.

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