By Sam Bush
The Eagles have asked veteran left tackle Jason Peters to take a pay cut, ESPN’s Adam Caplan reports.
Peters, 35, is scheduled to make a base salary of $10.45 million in 2017 and carries a cap number of $11.7 million, the highest on the team.
The Eagles currently have $169 million in cap commitments for 2017 and roughly $7 million in cap space.
With free agency fast approaching, they are expected to make several moves over the next month to create some financial wiggle room.
Peters is heading into his 14th NFL season. An undrafted free agent out of Arkansas, he has been named All Pro six times and voted to the Pro Bowl nine times, including this past season. (His salary jumped $500,000 by hitting a Pro Bowl escalator.) Though he led the league in false starts (10) by a rather large margin, Peters enjoyed a bounce-back year overall after an injury-plagued 2015 — Chip Kelly’s final season as head coach.
“You can ask [Peters] nicely to consider taking a pay cut. If he doesn’t, what are you going to do?” salary cap expert and former agent Joel Corry told ESPN. “You’re not going to release him and create another hole. You’d save $9.7 million on the cap, but would the ends justify the means with him? You really need him at this point.”
The Eagles gave Lane Johnson a five-year, $56 million extension last offseason with the idea that he would eventually take over the left tackle spot. But there is no sure-fire heir apparent to him at right tackle, which was evident during Johnson’s 10-game suspension for violating the performance-enhancing drugs policy for a second time. One more violation, and he faces a two-year ban.
Peters has two years remaining on his deal. He is scheduled to make a base salary of $10 million with a cap number of just over $11 million in 2018.