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From his couch in Queen city back into NFL, Jason Peters now a Seahawk

by Gregg Bell, The News Tribune | September 14, 2023 at 8:00 p.m.
Dallas Cowboys offensive tackle Jason Peters of Queen City, Texas, waits on the sideline before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022, in Jacksonville, Fla. The Seattle Seahawks signed veteran offensive tackle Jason Peters on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023, with the team having concerns about the health of both of their starting tackles. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough, File)

SEATTLE -- Queen City, Texas, native Jason Peters was putting on his shoulder pads for his first Seahawks practice. It was another, countless practice of his seemingly endless football life.

A new locker neighbor came over to the 41-year-old former Philadelphia Eagles All-Pro and Super Bowl champion.

"Hi, I'm Noah Fant. I play tight end," Peters' new teammate and neighbor on Seattle's offensive line said. "Nice to meet you."

Then the 41-year-old and 25-year-old went outside to practice next to each other.

That's the state of the Seahawks at tackle entering NFL week two.

Seattle put Abe Lucas on injured reserve Tuesday. The team decided its starting right tackle's "old knee," as coach Pete Carroll has called it, needs at least the minimum of four games on IR to get back to playing condition. The earliest Lucas could return is Seattle's Oct. 22 game against Arizona.

Lucas to IR came soon after Carroll made it sound as if starting left tackle Charles Cross won't play either for Seattle (0-1) Sunday when they take on the Lions (1-0) in Detroit. Cross was carted off Lumen Field during the Seahawks' opening game last weekend with an injury to the big toe on his right foot.

"They're both hurting," Carroll said of Cross and Lucas. "It's going to be hard for them (to be able to play Sunday). It's going to be a challenge."

So here comes Peters, off his couch in east Texas.

And here comes Raiqwon O'Neal. Carroll confirmed the Seahawks were signing O'Neal, the undrafted rookie tackle from UCLA, off the practice squad of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It's conceivable Peters and O'Neal could be protecting Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith from raging Lions and trying to nail down silent line calls in the deafening noise of a sold-out Ford Field Sunday.

Or it could be McClendon Curtis, another undrafted rookie tackle who can also play guard. Seattle signed him, too, on Wednesday, off the Las Vegas Raiders' practice squad.

Welcome to the Seahawks' current offensive line.


Jason Peters was home in Texas

Peters was at home in Queen City, Texas, 25 minutes south of Texarkana, last weekend doing what tens of millions of Americans were doing.

"I was watching football," he said Wednesday. "This is my first year not being there in the opener, in 19 years."

Why did he leave home to fly across the continent to crank it back up again? Why was he practicing Wednesday for the first time since he played his last game, his only start last season for the Dallas Cowboys on Jan. 8?

"Twenty (seasons) sound better than 19, don't it?" Peters said.

"Seattle's got a good team, man. Feel like you can make a run in the playoffs. And get to the Super Bowl, be honest. They got a good team. I watched them last year.

"Why not come for 20 and get a ring?"

He -- and his new team coming off a 30-13 loss at home to the Los Angeles Rams -- are a long way from that.

As all the other Seahawks began practice around him Wednesday, Peters was down on the grass on his back. A trainer was extensively stretching Peters' torso and back that haven't been in a three-point stance in eight-plus months.

Is it conceivable Peters, after just three practice days with the Seahawks this week, could be their left tackle against Detroit?

"You would think you would give him a couple weeks to get ready to go," Carroll said. "I don't know if we can afford to do that."

Peters said he could play this week. Uh, maybe.

"I mean, maybe this Sunday," he said. "Maybe, a couple weeks."

He's not worried about learning the Seahawks' offense. After 19 years of NFL offenses, it's just the same stuff in different terminology, he said.

"I've just got to get a feel for the pads," Peters said. "I haven't had them on since January, so that's going to take some time."

As Carroll said, the Seahawks don't really have that.

"He's such a remarkable player. Look at his film from last year, you can't tell how old he is," Carroll said of Peters' Cowboys tape. "He's a long-term left tackle. But the flexibility is there, and his feet move beautiful. A handful of plays, he looked pretty darn good today. He looked quick and light on his feet."

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