An Eagles offseason that had been off to a very promising start took a pretty terrible turn today as the team announced that All-Pro left tackle Jason Peters had ruptured his achillies while training in Texas and will be lost for the 2012 season. This certainly could be a part of the reason the team suddenly got the King Dunlap deal done.
I won't spend too much time recounting what a blow this is to the team as it's pretty obvious. Losing one of the best LTs in the NFL not only hurts the teams ability to protect Michael Vick, but could also very well limit the effectiveness of LeSean McCoy next season. Peters is a huge part of what the Eagles do offensively and now he's gone.
I suppose the one silver lining, if you can call it that, is that it happened now. The Eagles have five months to figure out what to do. Whoever ends up playing LT will have the whole offseason to work with Howard Mudd and the first team. So at the very least, they'll have had time to prepare.
Here's what Andy Reid had to say about Peters' injury
"As we announced earlier, Jason Peters has sustained a ruptured Achilles tendon. He had been working out in his hometown in Texas when this occurred. He alerted [head athletic trainer] Rick [Burkholder] and they quickly put together a plan of attack for his evaluation, surgery and subsequent rehabilitation.
We all know how much Jason loves to play the game and how much he was looking forward to the start of the 2012 season. Jason is one of the best, if not the best, offensive tackle in the NFL. We don't know when he will return to the field and we will not speculate on a timeline. We are just going to let the surgical process and the rehabilitation process play itself out.
Howie and I will sort out the roster situation for the offensive line. We are glad to have King [Dunlap] back as a part of our offensive line and we will continue to scan the free agent market, also knowing the draft is less than a month away."
Now who might fill in? Todd Herremans is a candidate, but with a lefty QB it's probably best that he stays at RT given that he's the best tackle on the team at the moment. King Dunlap by default is probably the leader in the clubhouse as he's filled in for Peters previously. King has actually done a very solid job when given the chance, but we are only talking about 7 career starts. There's really no way on knowing whether he could hold up and play at a relatively high level over the course of a 16 game season.
The most likely candidate is someone currently a free agent, through a trade or the draft.
Either way you slice it though, it's not good news.