The Bears acquired Jason Peters to help their ailing offensive line, in lieu of the recovering Teven Jenkins, who continues to contend with a back injury. Peters, 39, is regarded by many as one of the best offensive tackles to play professional football over the past 15 years. Unfortunately, they’ll have to wait another day or two to ease in the future Hall of Famer.
In a carryover protocol from last year, Peters, as a new acquisition, is currently in five-day isolation for COVID-19 quarantine. This is not a mandate that applies to vaccinated players, who can freely join any team they want without being in a bubble. While certainly still capable on some level as a seasoned pro, it speaks to how desperate the Bears were for offensive line help that they went out and signed Peters given his vaccination status, age, and waning health in recent campaigns. The mileage of an extended career as a big man has taken its toll as Peters has missed 11 games in the last two years with various ailments, and only a few seasons ago, tore both his ACL and MCL.
It’s not clear how much he has left in the tank, but given this medical context, it’s difficult to imagine the Bears signed Peters to be a backup. This is a man who came to start and start right away. No doubt in the minds of football ops at Halas Hall, he hopefully offers a measure of stability to an active shaky offensive front. What’s working in Peters’ favor as his first Bears’ appearance is delayed, is the obvious familiarity with Chicago’s offensive scheme and offensive line coach Juan Castillo from their days in Philadelphia together.
On top of better health fortune, Peters will need both wells of prior knowledge to be the stabilizing force the Bears hope he still is.